Wednesday, February 07, 2007

project management and play time

I'm in training again at work, this time for project management. Another two and half days of training. Nice part is that it's an interesting class and the instructor is engaging. He gave us tips and tools to planning and work flow, writing up scope, work breakdown structure, and flow charts. I'm sure there are other names for these same things. I could see how I could use some of this at work and at home. I mean, that's why I'm in the Prosperity workshops to "project manage prosperity". I coudl see some of the things that I do already and things that I could do more of.

The key question from today and the prosperity workshop, how do you define success? At the end of it all, how do you know you have achieved success? It forces you to think about and imagine what that means, what does it look like, and per the monthly assignment from the prosperity workshop what does your dream look, taste, feel, smell, hear like? Success has to be tangible. A dream can be airy and fluffy, but success has to be something I can have and say yes, this is success.

Tomorrow we get to do the good stuff: the monitor and control and closure of projects. How do you test that you're still going in the right direction or that you have to adjust your plans or maybe take a different strategy? How do you kill a project that really isn't going anywhere? People hate death. And they hate killing. But it really is a necessity of life. You don't necessarily have to know how to kill a person or a life, but you have to be able to kill. Kill a project, kill a dream, kill a direction, kill a habit. It was a lesson I had had before, but it didn't really become clear til I saw it today in the people who in the training with me.

People in the university don't like to end anything. Things at the university can linger and linger and linger, part of that is because people tie their usefulness with something they're working on and if they don't have anything they can work on then well, they must not be useful. But are you really useful doing something that doesn't really amount to much of anything except spinning wheels. Most people there had been at the university for much longer, but I could see what "hanging" on does to a person. It's really a slow death. A point where you can't even finish this thing because you don't know what you'd do without it. If you want to be effective, if you want to be more efficient, you've got to kill those things that are just draining you. Set yourself free as it were.

Anyway, back to planning...

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