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How Much is Too Much? June 30, 2009

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Knowing when to break the rules and adjust the scope of your responsibilities to meet the needs of the project —

Read my latest guest post at “How to Manage a Camel”:

http://projectcentric.co.uk/how_to_manage_a_camel/projectmanagement/how-much-is-too-much/

Expect Success June 22, 2009

Posted by Jason in Insider's View Relapses.
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Congratulations are certainly in order for any business still surviving—if not thriving—now that some industry sectors have begun to level off and become less volatile. The government’s largesse doesn’t hurt either. Apparent success notwithstanding, most of the firms that I have spoken with recently are still “seeing how the next few months work out.” Unfortunately, this is counter to good business practices. In fact, those firms that have managed to make it this far must be doing something right, even if some simply do not know what it is. The best firms, however, have actively implemented decisions that are most likely to foster positive outcomes. Contrary to those that struggled through the last year, who wish they would have been better prepared for the downturn, the best managers are now making preparations to recover. Are you in this group? (more…)

Choose to Notice June 21, 2009

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Seth Godin just posted about a game called “Spotto” :

http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2009/06/spotto.html

It is just one of many “I spy” type games in which you are looking for some object (usually while on those boring car rides) and shout out something – “Punch Buggy” or “Slug Bug” being always poplular.  The point is that once we choose to notice something, that thing seems to be everywhere – at least more common than we would have guessed previously. This is one reason to explore the world outside of your professional focus. (more…)

Quality of Clients June 17, 2009

Posted by Jason in Insider's View Relapses.
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I just finished reading John Bachner’s article “Open Letter from a Client Representative” in the May issue of CE News.  It relates a hypothetical letter from a dissatisfied client and provides several points regarding the desired role of the engineer from the client’s point of view. Of course, correspondence from a client like this is rare. Many firms may attempt to gauge their performance with post-project surveys or interviews, but this valuable insight often is foregone in favor of moving on to the next project. (more…)

FAA as PM June 13, 2009

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The FAA has recently been working on a plan to consolidate many of its meteorologists into two locations in Maryland and Kansas City.  This may seem somewhat benign to non-pilots, but represents a significant potential for safety degradation.  The National Air Traffic Controllers Association has called the plan “foolish” and “reckless”.

As a pilot myself, I look at the plan a few different ways.  (more…)

Two Laws June 10, 2009

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Please read my latest guest blog at “How to Manage a Camel”:

http://projectcentric.co.uk/how_to_manage_a_camel/projectmanagement/guest-blogger-two-laws-you-must-know/

Exciting to be Boring June 3, 2009

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What characteristics are recognized as being common attributes of CEO’s and other business leaders?

Charisma?

People skills?

Vision?

Interestingly, not necessarily.  (more…)

Constructech: Stimulus Dollars June 2, 2009

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The following is my guest column in Constructech’s June 2009 issue:

With the rapid changes in federal and state legislation, it is hard enough for designers and builders to stay on top of current events, let alone begin to anticipate what may be around the next bend.  In many cases, it may be sufficient to continue performing the same services for the same clients, dealing with new regulations or funding after the fact.  More…(pdf)

Read more about infrastructure, residential, and commercial construction at www.constructech.com