Project Practitioners > Time Management

Posts Under "Time Management"

How Regular Exercise Helps You Balance Work and Family (article recommendation)
By Cinda Voegtli
Don't think of exercise "yet one more thing to fit in" to our busy days. Regular exercise actually can play a direct role in reducing our sense of conflict between work and home responsibilities. So says this nice article from that aims to shift our thinking about exercise relates to the ability to achieve both quality work and home/family life. From the author: "New research by my colleagues and I...demonstrates a clear relationship between physical activity that is planned, structured, repetitive, and purposive – to use Caspersen and colleagues’ seminal definition of exercise – and one’s ability to manage... Read More»

4 Ways to Shorten a Project Schedule
By Alan Zucker
Every project manager can construct a good project schedule. Great project managers can take that same body of work and deliver it more quickly without reducing scope or compromising quality. The great PMs can cut 10%-25% from a schedule by understanding how teams work and where there are opportunities within the project plan itself. Parkinson's Law states, “Work expands to meet the time available for its completion." The project corollary is that tasks are not completed before their planned finish date. Project planning has deep roots in engineering principles. Henry Gantt (developer of the Gantt Chart) worked with Frederick Taylor... Read More»

Sanity check: What is MOST important for your time in the next week?
By Cinda Voegtli
Step back from the trees and bushes and weeds of each project -- and contemplate the overall forest. See the big picture, not just the details. The goals, not just the tasks. The results needed, not just efforts at hand. The risks, not just the work plan. Specifically, ask yourself this: For us to accomplish what ultimately matters, what is truly MOST important for me as the PM to do this week? Questions such as the following will help feret out places for high-leverage attention: Is there a particular upcoming critical target date, a major milestone? (Then who do I... Read More»

17 Great IFTTT Recipes for Project Managers
By DeAnna Burghart
IFTTT (stands for "IF This, Then That") is an automation tool for linking apps, devices, and an ever-growing list of Internet of Things gadgets. These recipes will make it easier to manage your project communication automatically. Read More»

Personal productivity (and stress reduction!) - minute details that can make all the difference
By Cinda Voegtli
When things-to-do are coming at us from all directions, and seemingly nothing is under our control, I've found there ARE some factors I can control - and I am more productive and less stressed when I regularly manage to do so. The key for me has been knowing what disrupts my best thinking and what stresses me out; determining strategies for avoiding or mitigating those things; and then sticking to my resolve to do so. In a nutshell -- I have have gotten really clear with myself about my own personal rhythms and acknowledged them as important to my emotional... Read More»

Time Management Mythology
By Brian Irwin
I recently heard a story told that recounted the experience of a teacher who was demonstrating the concept of volume. The teacher filled a glass jar with rocks and asked her class if it was full. The class responded enthusiastically and with certainty—yes! She then took sand and poured it into the jar and it filled the space between the rocks. She then asked, “How about now, is the container full?” Once again, with a little less certainty this time, the class responded, yes! She then poured water into the jar which filled the space between the sand, thereby occupying... Read More»

Do Templates Really Save Time?
By DeAnna Burghart
Since ProjectConnections is in large part a template repository, that’s the sort of question that would normally raise eyebrows. But I couldn’t help asking it when this cartoon popped up in my Feedly feed last week. The joke here, of course, is the time that was spent compiling the chart. But at the same time, this is a great reminder about proportional effort in your process improvements. Read More»

Think and Work Differently
By Margaret de Haan
For any of you that have ever read anything that I have posted in the past, you know that I always lean towards doing what makes sense rather than what is written in some book. Each organization, culture, team, and Project is different, so why assume that anything and everything is cookie-cutter? With all of the specific steps in many of the methodologies, to follow them to the letter would make Projects so process heavy that you would never get anything done. Sure, documentation and process are required to avoid total chaos, but isn’t our role as Project Managers primarily... Read More»

Blurred Boundaries, or Dodged Responsibility?
By DeAnna Burghart
"What we've lost, above all, are stopping points, finish lines and boundaries." I see this assertion here and there on a regular basis. Like most modern workers, I gravitate to these remarks, nod sagely, and comment on how that's just like my own workday. Oh, yes, I bounce all over the place, and work long hours, and never get away from the phone. But if I'm really honest with myself, I have to wonder if it's truly new behavior. Is multi-tasking really the result of a uniquely hyper-competitive, hyper-digital environment? Read More»

A quick reminder: Agendas are important
By Sinikka Waugh
Sometimes, I'll admit, I get a little lazy. No, "lazy" isn't the right's more like I get a little too "comfortable." I'm comfortable with my project team; I'm comfortable with the work being done; I'm comfortable with our interactions; I'm comfortable with where we're headed; I'm comfortable with my own understanding of what's coming up and what we're supposed to be focused on; and I'm comfortable with my own ability to shoot from the hip. So sometimes, when I'm "comfortable," I come into meetings with an agenda in my mind, rather than published ahead of time. But just recently,... Read More»

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