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How a project plan is like a musical score

An orchestra conductor uses a musical score to direct a piece of music. Every instrument has a different part to play. It’s in the way that these parts work together that music is created. Each instrument has its own part. The sheets of music that each musician uses tell exactly when, and what, to play. […]

How is project management like conducting an orchestra?

Conductors of great symphony orchestras do not play every musical instrument; yet through leadership the ultimate production is an expressive and unified combination of tones. – Thomas D. Bailey How is project management like conducting an orchestra? In many ways. A project manager does not need to be the subject matter expert to be able […]

Stolen Computer Found

The news was all good when the US federal government announced that they had recovered the stolen computer – and all the data it contained. Although many of us suspected that if a stolen computer would be found – it would be this one. The Bush administration did NOT need one more reason for people […]

US Veterans Information Stolen

Recently, the US national news services have reported that a laptop computer with the identifying information for 26.5 million US veterans was stolen from a government employee’s home. The US agency that the employee worked for is the Department of Veterans Affairs, under the Department of Defense. Although the theft was reported immediately by the […]

Project Managers as Leaders

The biggest failure that I can see – with the limited knowledge we have right now – in FEMA’s response to Hurricane Katrina was a failure in leadership.   Now that a new director has been appointed at FEMA, we’ll see if he has what it takes to succeed.   How do we know if […]

FEMA Leadership

Let’s look at the qualifications of the most recent three FEMA directors. The current FEMA director is Mike Brown. Before joining FEMA as a lawyer, he was an estate lawyer and worked for 11 years managing and adjudicating horse shows. He became FEMA head when his boss, Allbaugh, left and recommended him to the president. […]

FEMA Director

A friend of mine, James Huggins, asked this question about project managers being subject matter experts. “While they don’t need to be SMEs, how much DO they need to know about the context, culture, processes, technology, etc.? As an example, can ANYONE be head of FEMA? Or does it need to be someone with a […]

Steaming Mad

I’m a bit surprised by my reaction to Hurricane Katrina, the category 4 hurricane that hit the Gulf Coast of the US on August 29, 2005. I am angry. I’m angry that the evacuation plans did not include everyone. I’m angry that the infrastructure has not been updated and maintained. I’m angry that the most […]

Self Coaching?

© Diana Lindstrom 2005 All Rights Reserved I wrote a Letter to the Editor of PM Network magazine – one of the three publications from PMI (Project Management Institute). Here it is: John Sullivan’s article, Coaching Yourself, in the April 2005 issue of PM Network, misses one very important point. If self-coaching worked well for […]

Do Project Managers Have to be Technical SMEs?

© Diana Lindstrom All Rights Reserved Now that I’ve taken a European-type holiday, I’m back. A lot has happened in the world during the holidays – and since. Joining the billions of people across the globe, I am saddened by the loss of life caused by the tsunami in the Indian Ocean. Back to project […]