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Resolutions are so last year! How IT Project Leaders are pledging success in 2019

Back to work, eh? So, how are your New Year’s Resolutions working out? Personal and professional? Probably, if you're like most people I talk with, you’re having a mixed bag of results. Now that's sort of OK with the personal stuff. If your resolution was to eat more healthily and hit the gym but yo...
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  1520 Hits

Eliminating the IT Project Unpredictable – It’s More Judgement Than Luck

"Well that's a bit random!" said a Project Manager I was sat with recently as his project threw up one of those curved balls that only seem to happen at 4.59pm on a Friday, just as you're about to clock off for the weekend. The project had cutting edge visibility so the "random" occurrence in questi...
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  1272 Hits

Fail Fast, Fail Often, Fail Well: The Key to IT Project Success

“I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” – Michael Jordan. An IT Project Manager I know, let's call him Richard, h...
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  1810 Hits

The Roast of a Project Manager

Have you seen the TV show "The Roast Of …"? Basically, it's like 'This Is Your Life' (if you remember that back in the day) but instead of celebrities coming on and praising the subject of the show, they turn up and spill the beans on their bad habits and worst moments. The most recent one I saw fea...
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The 7 Killer Traits of a ROCKSTAR Project Manager - A CIO's Checklist

A CIO sprang this on me this week. "David, what makes a great Project Manager?" It's one of those questions that you answer instinctively - great organiser, they deliver projects within deadline and budget, good communication skills, etc, etc. All true but I was a little disappointed by my instincti...
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Resistance is fatal. How to drive change in a change resistant environment

 “To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often,” so said Winston Churchill. He clearly never had to manage an IT Project in an organisation resistant to change. I think we've all experienced some of our darkest hours doing this. I was chatting to a PM friend this week and he joked that ...
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  1212 Hits

An IT Project Manager's guide to a good night's sleep

If you've ever had a sleepless night over an IT Project, you can take some solace from the fact that you are certainly not alone. In fact, if you haven't suffered any anxiety that has woken you in the middle of the night in a cold sweat you should think yourself really lucky. That or worry that you'...
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  1508 Hits

Are You Passionately Curious? It's IT Project Management's Success Secret, And Size Matters

Why do some projects stir a passion within you and others leave you less revved up? Could unlocking the secret lead to fewer IT Project failures? It's true, isn't it? The more passionate about a task you are, the more likely you are to succeed. Even doing the dishes can be a chore or a fun twenty mi...
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  1225 Hits

Five Steps To Prevent Confirmation Bias Impacting Your IT Project Success

Are you guilty of confirmation bias?
Are you guilty of confirmation bias? It's a psychological habit where you filter your reality until it resembles something more aligned with your existing beliefs. I think we're all a bit guilty of it from time to time. For example, you think that your co-workers are lazy so all you see is them slop...
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Better IT Project Team Cohesion, Better Decisions, Better Strategies - Set Up A Camcorder

I just witnessed an IT Project team undergo a massive positive transformation ... all thanks to a video camera and an innovative CIO. The team was going through one of phases. You ever have these? Nothing was wrong ... but nothing felt right. They were delivering IT Projects on time but not feeling ...
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  1650 Hits

How Asking What If Could Predict Your IT Project Curved Balls

I have a new favourite way to pass free time. It's a webcomic called "xkcd" by Randall Munroe, an American cartoonist, author, engineer, scientific theorist, and the creator of the most addictive website ever! Especially the site's "What If" column, where Randall attempts to scientifically answer ou...
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  1756 Hits

If, buts and maybes. Mind your IT Project language

Can certain words cast a negative shadow on Project Management thinking?Originally published on I walked into a Project Management Office recently, and on the wall, in large letters above the Project Leader's desk was the phrase 'No "Ifs", "Buts" Or "Maybes"'. At first, it looked like one of...
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Recent Comments
Guest — Jerry Ferguson

Doesn't If = Risk?

Whilst I agree with the sections of the article on 'But' and 'Maybe', I do have an issue with the 'If's being 'a negative shadow o... Read More
Tuesday, 23 January 2018 14:08
Guest — David Cotgreave

Davids response - Doesn't If =...

The point Jerry makes is a very good one – by definition risks are something that may happen and therefore can be directly replace... Read More
Tuesday, 23 January 2018 15:21
  1913 Hits

How to fail well in IT projects

Previously published on  Failure Is the new success. Here are five ways that you can embrace failure and enjoy its unexpected benefits. Knowing when to say enough is enough and kill an IT Project must be among the hardest skills to learn. I'm not sure any of us ever totally master it either....
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  1597 Hits

Why You Should Stop Saying Sorry In IT Projects

Why You Should Stop Saying Sorry In IT Projects
I was in a client's office kitchen with a project manager I was working with who with was making us both a cup of tea. He was standing in front of the drawer that contained all the cutlery when a colleague entered in search of a fork.  "Excuse me, John, can I just get in the drawer please." Joh...
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Every IT project fail is a step to success

I have come to a conclusion this week ... most IT Project challenges are not solved by theoretical, intelligent design. Now, I make a living delivering project success through proper planning, processes, governance, etc. ... in other words theoretical, intelligent design - so let me explain what I m...
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  1805 Hits

Collaboration. If it’s good enough for Paul McCartney...

There was a time when collaborations between music artists were a rarity. Queen and David Bowie, George Michael and Aretha Franklin, Lionel Richie and Diana Ross ... they stood out. It was quite exciting when your favourite artist teamed up with someone else because the outcome was always something ...
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  1799 Hits

Planning for your vacation or your IT project. Pack the right essentials

As I write this we have just entered the second quarter of 2017, Spring is looming, the daffodils are blooming and the year is zooming by. I don't know about you, but my thoughts have already started to turn to the summer and specifically the annual family holiday - our chance to relax, unwind and c...
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  1437 Hits

A poor workman blames his tools - is this true in IT project management?

"It's a poor workman who blames his tools." I heard this, for the first time in years, during the analysis of why an IT Project had failed to deliver. It got me thinking. Is it true? Is Project success more a product of the skills of a project team than the tools that they use? Or is it the case tha...
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Fake news! How untruths, half truths and lies really hurt IT projects

In recent weeks, I've observed that there seem to be three ways of communicating 'news' in IT Projects. i) To communicate the news, update or information half as big as it is in reality. ii) To communicate the news, update or information twice as big as it is in reality. iii) To communicate the news...
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  1962 Hits

IT project management boring? Are you sure you’re doing it right?

IT project management boring? Are you sure you’re doing it right?
Project Management is the second most boring job in the world, according to a recent study. When you factor in that working in IT also makes the top ten you would be forgiven for imagining that all IT Project Managers must be constantly nodding off on the job. Who did they ask? It reminds me of a re...
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  3987 Hits

Latest Blog Posts

October 2021
I smiled this week as a colleague said, “Failing to plan is planning to fail” and then grimaced at delivering a cliché that makes us both cringe. Like most clichéd, ...

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