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April 26, 2018 In this edition:
Is your team bogged down in bureaucracy and minutia? They wouldn't be the first. If there's even a whiff of "I can't," or "we've never," or "that's just the way it is" in your group, it's time to step back, take a look around, and be sure they (and you) have the room needed to do great things.
Cinda
» Featured Article
» From the Blogs
» Great Teams Do Great Things
» Corporate Subscriptions



Featured Article
Engagement Through Ownership
Geof Lory

Geof Lory Over the past several years our team has grown substantially in size, and the work has gotten more complex and interdependent. As complexity grew, we added more structure to our communication and started relying on technical tools to facilitate interaction between team members. We were well down that slippery slope when we took on a large endeavor with a short deadline that just about broke the team.

After a thorough retrospective, the general feeling was that the poor communication that caused the problem could be fixed with better structure and clearer roles and responsibilities -- i.e., more bureaucracy. After a few months in that model, it was clear we had not identified the real problem. Our problem was not one of structure, it was one of ownership, engagement, and accountability. For that, we needed a different approach, something deeper than just reorganizing and redefining roles.

Top-down decisions may feel like you're freeing your team to work, but you're hamstringing their engagement »



From the Blogs
The 5x50 Productivity Formula, by Chris Cook
Project managers are always looking for ways to be more productive and generate more with less. Resources, including time and money, are scarce and even finite. No one on this planet gets more than 24 hours in a day. From billionaires to middle managers to boots-on-the-ground laborers, each one is allotted the same amount of time. Here are five habits you can do every day for 50 minutes each that will increase your productivity 30%.
Great Teams Do Great Things…
…when we let them. These tools and articles will help you get out of your team's way, keep them motivated, help them understand expectations, and stand up for them (and the project) even when it feels impossible.

Move Boulders, Don't Throw Pebbles
Why PMs need to sit back, bite their tongues, and learn to like the squares (for now).

The Continuing Epidemic of Disengaged Employees
Companies with higher employee engagement scores also enjoy better customer satisfaction scores, higher quality, lower employee absenteeism and turnover, and increased profitability. We know how to solve this problem. We have known for decades.

Responsibility Allocation Matrix – SPECIAL
This Premium resource is free to registered Members until May 10, 2018
RACI has its place, but this Responsibility Allocation Matrix takes project responsibilities and commitments to a whole new level. Detailed and role-focused, it asks all project team members to consider their key project tasks, the inputs they need, and the outputs they expect to deliver, for a more complete look at the cross-functional dependencies in your plan.

Team Member Introductions – MEMBER
Team dynamics will ultimately define your team's success. The process outlined in this guideline will accelerate your team's "getting to know you" process so they will become more productive with less time trying to figure each other out.

Powerful Project Visions for Developing Projects in Half the Time – MEMBER
What do you do when your company has to have a project completed in an unreasonable timeframe, or else? You get your cross-functional team together and hash out a one-to-two page consensus vision of what can realistically be done in the time available. Teams aligned to powerful product visions can finish projects rapidly. Using real project examples, this paper discusses how to arrive at a Vision, what it must contain to deliver a super-urgent project on time, and how to combat the number one reason for project slippage: changing product definitions that force teams to deal with a moving target.

5-Step Tactical Influence Plan – PREMIUM
Tons of project responsibility but no direct authority? It's nothing new -- but it sure can get old. Instead of feeling frustrated and stuck, take charge in a different way -- by using a simple 5-step process to think through how to influence one or more people in each challenging situation.
Corporate Subscriptions and Licensing
Want your team members to have their own access to templates and how-to resources for their project work? Need to share documents and deliverables beyond your project team? We make it easier with affordable corporate subscriptions and licensing. Detailed information regarding corporate options is available online. Give your whole team, or even the entire organization, cost-effective access to our comprehensive online library of resources. You already know how helpful it's been for you. Now it's time to share with everyone else. Find out more »

Not sure if corporate terms apply to you? Check out our licensing terms at the top of our Terms of Service page, in refreshingly ordinary, everyday English.


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