Telephone Communication – Critical Skills for a Project Manager

I buzzed the entry phone, introduced myself, and waited, feeling slightly uncomfortable gazing at the box on the wall. Then I heard a voice “Hello! Please come in!”. Instantly, I relaxed. He sounded like a really nice man, and the visit was clearly going to be a pleasant one. The voice spoke just four words, but from that I made massive assumptions about its owner’s nature, personality, and attitude to me. Now, this was an entry system, but the principle is just the same on the phone. You can’t see people, so you infer everything from what they say, and ...

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PM Census

Census Time – Want to know more about other project managers?

Wouldn’t it be interesting to know exactly what a £55K a year project manager does in, say, a utilities company? Where do they work in the organisation? What kind of responsibility do they have, both budget wise and span of control? What kind of training do they do? Are they members of a professional body? Did they get a pay rise this year? The same goes for a £80K programme manager working in the public sector or a £100K PMO Manager working in professional services. And how about change managers and business analysts? What do they do? How much are ...

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Agile Pirate Mentality - Radtac

Arrrgile and Pirate mentality!

In a recent retrospective one of the team said we should continue the ‘Pirate Mentality’.  What did that mean?  Well in this case we had made some brave decisions in the team and chose to deal with the consequences later.  This was good as the team had taken ownership of an issue and dealt with it within the team, later other teams adopted the solution created by the team. But it got me thinking, putting aside the fact piracy has some undesirable traits (violence and illegality), are there any more Pirate traits that could have synergies with an Agile Team? ...

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Project Management Graduates – Networking Advice

Last Thursday evening Arras People had a stand at a Careers Fair for UCL’s Construction & Project Management faculty in Central London. There were about 150 – mainly postgraduate students who will be graduating next September and looking for work within these fields. Arras don’t tend to have graduate placements because hiring organisations tend to sort this type of recruitment out themselves directly with the universities. Yet we know there are never enough placements for everyone who graduates in any given year and that can be a tough call when you’ve just spend a lot of time and money studying. ...

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Q&A Project Management Careers: Salary Levels

I’m currently looking for new opportunities in different parts of the world – I have a few countries I’m particularly interested in. How do I find out what salary level I should be aiming for in different countries? The trick is with this is to think like a native. How do you know that your current salary level is right for the country you currently work within? You probably think about the sector you work in; the type of company you work for; the years’ experience you have and what the market may be like at any given moment in ...

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Happiness at Work

It’s Friday, Are You Happy?

This has come at the perfect time – it’s Friday and it’s one of the biggest surveys ever into the happiness of project managers at work. It’s being spearheaded by Jocelyn S. Davies, an Adjunct Professor at the Center for Excellence in Project Management at the University of Maryland. I met Jocelyn a few years ago when I was co-editing the Handbook of People in Project Management and Jocelyn wrote a chapter about positive psychology and project management. We’ve kept in touch because her work is fascinating and I’m really intrigued to see what this survey will show us. They’ve ...

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