Bridge the Gap Consulting

A Retrospective After Writing 100 Blog Posts

Bridge the Gap Consulting

This is blog post #101. I didn’t have much of a goal when I started blogging. The idea of sharing ideas, frustrations, losses and wins seemed like a good idea. In many ways, it’s been therapeutic!

2020 52

The Grind of Project Success

Bridge the Gap Consulting

In my last post, I talked about “ Project Get Fit ” that may or may not be on your 2020 resolution list. You set goals, you make a plan, and you execute. Sounds simple, right?

2020 52

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What Boeing Reminded Us About Email

Bridge the Gap Consulting

Now, I’m not ripping on everyone at Boeing. I’ve met and worked with folks from Boeing in my career and they are good people. Some employees, though, made some poor communication decisions regarding the 737 Max that have now gone public.

2020 52

Is "Project: Getting Fit" On Your 2020 Resolution List?

Bridge the Gap Consulting

“I want to get in shape, so I got a gym membership. What should I do?” ” I thought about what she was asking for a second. Many questions started popping into my head.

2020 52

Task Management For Project Managers

How can project planning that stretches over months or years remain relevant and account for new ad-hoc activities that arrive every day?

Project Management Lessons from Santa Claus

Bridge the Gap Consulting

I have one kiddo that still believes in the magic of Santa Claus. His little friends and our neighbors are also young enough to believe jolly ol’ St. Nick will be dashing through the snow and the skies on his annual trip around the globe next week.

2019 52

Warning: Dates On The Calendar Are Closer Than They Appear

Bridge the Gap Consulting

If you drive or ridden in the passenger seat of a vehicle and looked at the side mirror, you may have noticed the little sticker that says “OBJECTS IN THE MIRROR ARE CLOSER THAN THEY APPEAR.” ” When changing lanes, we check them (most of the time anyway).

2020 52

Issue-Free Projects Are the Exception, NOT the Norm

Bridge the Gap Consulting

I enjoy being part of project management panel discussions. Just when you think you’ve heard it all, someone asks a question or talks about a situation that blows your mind! In a recent panel discussion, one such comment came up.

2019 52

Being Thankful, Project Management Style!

Bridge the Gap Consulting

Tis the season for being thankful; the time of year when we take a step back and appreciate that which is around us. From family, to friends, to career, it’s time to take stock of what we’re thankful for. I’ve been in project management for over 20 years.

Selecting a Project Management Tool IS a Project

Bridge the Gap Consulting

Recently, I have seen a more online posts asking questions about what project management tool(s) a company should buy: What tool does everyone recommend? My company would like a project management tool? What should we get? I’d like your opinion on a project management tool that is cloud-based and easy to use. PM tool recommendations please! Within 24 hours, there are a number of responses. They range from asking for more information, to recommendations, to sales pitches.

2019 40

Managing The Project Budget - Developing Your Project Management Skills

This eBook describes the process of managing the project budget and its associated costs.

What is Your Project’s Competition?

Bridge the Gap Consulting

Competition is all around. Your business is competing for clients and market share. We compete against co-workers to be on a new team or get a promotion. Pro sports teams compete to be the best in their divisions. We may even encourage our kids to compete hard and win. Everything seems to be a competition. Even in the most collaborative of environments, some competition is prevalent. But what about your project? Sure, you negotiated with all types of managers to get the right people.

Misery Training

Bridge the Gap Consulting

I’m running in a 50+ mile race in September. It will be the hardest thing, both physically and mentally, I have ever done. Race start is at 5:15AM and on average takes over 12 hours to complete. There is 25,000 feet of elevation change and a number of rivers to cross and mud to trudge through. When I tell friends I’m doing this, they say it sounds miserable. When I research posts about the race, I hear past participants talk about the misery they were in.

2013 40

What is Your Project Management “Bullpen”?

Bridge the Gap Consulting

“Every project manager in your PMO must become expert level in each process group and knowledge area to be successful.” ” That’s interesting, I thought. I replied back on the professional message board that though I agree every PM needs to understand and show competence in each process group, I don’t agree with the concept of being “expert level.”

One Skill That Cannot be Become a Commodity

Bridge the Gap Consulting

Technology will continue to evolve and take repetitive tasks away from humans. This was highlighted on a call with a sales person recently. They were demoing a finance software. Every question was met with: It does that automatically. You don’t have to do a thing. The system does it for you. No, trending analysis is done and delivered to you daily. Our embedded AI will tell you what’s needed. With a couple clicks of a button, the platform did everything we needed and then some.

Top 5 Project Management Report Templates

These FREE most popular templates will help you perform your role more efficiently.

Turn Your Retrospective Into a Celebration

Bridge the Gap Consulting

A peer of mine (who wishes to remain anonymous) has been a Scrum Master for a number of years and previously worked at a company that valued organizational agility and agile methods. Unfortunately, her role ended but was able to find another position with a company that has been wanting to be “agile” for some time. This company likes the thought of Scrum, but putting it into practice has been hindered by slow adapting managers, stakeholders and a few team members.

2019 40

To PMP, or Not To PMP

Bridge the Gap Consulting

Almost daily, there are questions posted in various project management groups asking for information about the Project Management Professional (PMP) certification. How do I obtain it? Is it worth it? Will it make me a better project manager? Will my job pay me more once I get certified?

Bad News Doesn’t Get Better With Age

Bridge the Gap Consulting

Have you ever heard a child give good news? It can be almost comical. They’re really excited. They trip over words. Lots of hand motions. Smiles galore. This is the best day ever! Conversely, have you heard them give bad news? They first try to hide it from you.

Goodbye 2019, and Thank You

Bridge the Gap Consulting

Time to put on the party hat, fill your glass with bubbly and toast in the new year! Welcome 2020! A new year, and decade, is upon us. Every year I make it a practice to look back and note the accomplishments, failures and lessons from the past 12 months. 2019 was one for the books!

2020 10

Walk a Mile in Your Customer's Shoes

Speaker: Steven Haines, Founder and CEO, Sequent Learning Networks

Product professionals use phrases like "voice of the customer," and "user experience" so often that it can be easy to lose sight of their actual meanings. How can we, as product professionals, learn to keep customers and users at the heart of our work? Join Steven Haines, globally recognized thought leader and author, as he guides us through a memorable journey demonstrating how you can walk a mile in their customer's shoes. He'll explore how, by developing true empathy for your users, you can ensure you're creating the features and products they actually want.

Sometimes What Sucks Builds an Unstoppable Team

Bridge the Gap Consulting

I normally wear a size 12 shoe. For this occasion, however, I was talked into a size 13. The sales person told me to go bigger because of what I was doing. As I looked down at those size 13’s, I could feel my ankles had swollen and my toes were now starting to bang against the front.

2019 52

Look for the Request Behind the Complaint

Bridge the Gap Consulting

Let’s face it, we all know that person, or people, who it seems do nothing but complain. Beautiful, sunny day and they say it’s too hot. Cool fall morning and it’s too cold. The coffee is not the perfect temperature! Why do you have to drive so fast!? Do you have to drive so slow!? Why are those kids so loud!? It never ends. In the working world, we have them too. In project management, they’re everywhere! Stakeholders, team members, vendors, functional managers!

2019 40

We Are Triumphant Despite _!!

Bridge the Gap Consulting

As project and program managers, we frequently face adversity. It can come from the team, management, stakeholders, and outside the company. It’s everywhere! Because you’re also leading one of the company’s initiatives, you need to be triumphant despite those adversities that are thrown in your path. It’s our job to take issues in stride and move forward. I was reminded this week of a huge white board a former co-worker had outside her cube.

Engage in Intellectual Combat

Bridge the Gap Consulting

One of the joys (or maybe lack thereof) of traveling is the wide array of conversations you overhear at airports and in airplanes. Given we’re a captive audience in an airport Starbucks line or sitting middle seat on a three hour flight, the conversations within earshot are plentiful and sometimes, very colorful. As I crammed into the isle seat of the CRJ, preparing for a quick 38 minute flight home, I got to overhear one such conversation.

How To Take Action on Customer Discovery

Speaker: Nick Noreña, Innovation Coach and Advisor, Kromatic

We all want to build successful products - and that means satisfied customers. Before anything else, you must understand what problems you can solve. The best way to do that is to get out of the building and start asking questions. But how can you make the most of those conversations, and ensure that you walk away with productive insights? Join Nick Noreña, educator, entrepreneur, and currently Innovation Coach and Advisor at Kromatic, as he covers how we can effectively action our findings from customer discovery conversations.

Take Time for Important Stuff

Bridge the Gap Consulting

I looked across the table at this guy as we ate breakfast at a little cafe. He drove me bat-s**t crazy sometimes. He constantly argued, never wanted help to do anything, told me multiple times a day I was wrong, talked loud and at times wouldn’t listen to a thing I said. But, I also loved this guy with all my heart. He’s my 9 year old son. Since he was 5, he has wanted to go to Paris.

2019 40

Prepare Your Project for Death

Bridge the Gap Consulting

That’s right, we’re not supposed to talk about death, even when talking about projects! But let’s be honest, some projects are destined to fail. Some are destined never to even start. So why is it then, when we have an initiative “coming off the rails” or the market suddenly shifts, there seems to be a push to keep a project alive? Instead of charging the paddles and clearing the area, we should be talking about how to move it to the next life.

Will a Project Management Certification Help Your Career?

LiquidPlanner

Let’s say you’re well-qualified in your technical skills—be it Java, programming languages, infrastructure, networks or system administration.

What Is a Project Management Communication Plan?

ProjectManager.com

Communication is strange. It should be so easy. You say something, someone listens and understands. But it doesn’t always work out that way, does it? So, what do we do to make sure our words are heard and the message we’re trying to convey is comprehended and acted on correctly? That’s a tall order.

Make an Impact with Analytics and Journey Maps

Speaker: Kirui K. K., Co-founder and CEO of Tanasuk Africa

If you want to offer a better user experience, it can be tempting to track each and every data point in your product. However, this can quickly get complicated and overwhelming as you collect more and more data. How do you know which metrics will help you improve? Kirui K. K., Co-founder & CEO Tanasuk Africa, wants you to know that analytics don't have to be complicated to make an impact - no matter the size of your company. Join him as he explains how to create a customer journey map, then use that map to figure out the metrics you need to know - and how to use them.

How to Prioritize Work When Everything Is #1

LiquidPlanner

All projects—especially large, complex projects—need clear priorities. Easier said than done. You can count on technical projects, no matter how well-planned, to involve change orders, re-prioritization and the regular appearance of surprises. It’s just the natural order of things. But still.

2018 852

The 10 Project Management Knowledge Areas (PMBOK)

ProjectManager.com

What do you need to know to succeed at project management? Everything! While there’s some truth to that joke, it’s not helpful to the student or the experienced professional who is looking for a way to understand the myriad responsibilities of being a project manager.

2019 403

How to Write a Business Case

ProjectManager.com

A business case is the way you prove to your client, customer or stakeholder that the product you’re pitching is a sound investment. Below, we illustrate the steps to writing one that will sway them.

2019 355

Ask a PM: How to Get Proper Estimates

LiquidPlanner

Dear Elizabeth: I work in a technical team as a project manager. We do a lot of projects that are innovative (for us), and my development colleagues always seem reluctant when it comes to project planning. They won’t give me timescales that will help me plan.

Your Post-Launch Toolkit for Understanding Your Users

Speaker: Brittney Gwynn, former Director of Product, Simple Health

If you've ever launched an MVP, you know that the journey has only just begun. How do you figure out what to do next? You know that you need to look at how different user segments react, but how do you quickly distinguish signal from noise so you can iterate and improve? Join Brittney Gwynn, former Director of Product at Simple Health, as she explains how you can use early customer feedback, usage data, and continuous experimentation to optimize your journey to product-market fit. Whether you're at a brand-new company, or looking to innovate within a more mature organization, or anywhere in between, you'll come away with a new skill set, ready to make the most of your launches.

How to Create a PERT Chart

ProjectManager.com

A PERT chart can help you manage your project. But what is a PERT chart and how does it assist project managers when they’re working on larger, more complex projects? What Is a PERT Chart? PERT is an acronym that stands for P rogram E valuation and R eview T echnique.

2019 390

Sprint Planning 101: How to Plan Great Sprints

ProjectManager.com

Ask a dozen people what agile is and you’ll get a dozen different answers. But it’s best defined by scrum as a model. Scrum is a way to manage a project within an agile framework and is made up of three roles: product owner, scrum master and team.

2020 266

Sample Project Plan For Your Next Project

ProjectManager.com

There are many steps that are taken just to get a project approved. The project has to have a goal and then a criteria for defining its success. But once you’ve sold the project with a strong business case and presentation to your stakeholders, the fun really begins.

How to Make an Action Plan (Example Included)

ProjectManager.com

Whether at home or at work, we all have goals. And to get there, we need action plans to get us started and keep us productive. What Is an Action Plan? What is an action plan? Generally, it’s a proposed strategy or course or action.

A Simple Framework for Complex User Goals

Speaker: Hannah Stegen, Customer Service Manager, Crescendo

How can you measure and affect your users' behavior if they're not doing something that's easily measurable? You can monitor usage, activation, retention, and more, but those metrics don't always align with every one of your goals for your users. Hope is not lost, however: with the right framework, you can still make sure your users are on track. Join Hannah Stegen (she/her), Customer Success Manager at Crescendo as she explains how you can monitor even the most complex user journeys by breaking them up into Attitude, Intention, and Behavior.