Tuesday, May 30, 2006

The Eighth Step - Right Concentration

The last step in the Eightfold Path focuses on concentration, which leads to meditation. Meditation is part of most religions, but can meditation be applied to work?

I have a problem solving technique I use that falls in line with this step. When I have a problem that needs a creative solution, I start by reviewing the information I have on the problem. I'll then retreat to a quiet place and get comfortable. I take some time to quiet my mind by concentrating on my breath. When I've cleared all my thoughts, I then start reflecting on the problem. Do I have the right problem identified or is there more to it? Do I understand the root cause of the problem? What are the options?

I usually find the answer isn't far away, I just needed some quiet time to figure it out. At this point I head back to my desk and start working on the solution.

So that's the last of the Eightfold Path and its relation to project management as I see it. I don't know what I'll write about next, I'll have to reflect on it for a while.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Six Sigma and Project Management

I recently wrote an article for the Center for Business Practices talking about how Six Sigma can be applied to a project management environment. Read it here.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

PMI EMEA Congress

I've just gotten back home after traveling to Madrid to attend the PMI EMEA Congress. The turnout this year was great! They had over 700 attendees. Madrid was a beautiful city, lots of old world charm. The tapas and cervecas were always good.

The topics were across the board from an introductory explanation of how to calculate slack on a network diagram to advance techniques for conducting reviews during software development projects (waterfall and agile). One of my favorite papers, by Dr Al Zeitoun my friend Janet Burns was titled "Cocktail Napkin Project Management" providing a simple approach for project management for people that aren't professional project managers.

I think it's time for me to go study a cocktail napkin or two. Cheers.