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The Week That Was In Project Management, Productivity and Leadership Feb W3-15

The Week That Was In Project Management, Productivity and Leadership Feb 23 March 1 2015

Quite a few things happened in last week. Here is quick recap to see the week that was about project management, productivity and leadership.

How to be horrible leader – 50 bad leadership traits


Todd Neilson in this leadership article talks about ‘How to be horrible leader – 50 bad leadership traits’. Of course, his idea is not to point out bad leaders but to help you avoid bad leadership traits, avoiding bad effects like low team morale, lack-of-team-spirit, etc because of some of ominous characteristics possibly exhibited by leadership. Let me take liberty of highlighting some of the 50 traits Todd mentioned in his article.

  • Belittling and condescending communication to staff (low morale)
  • Not empowering staff members to succeed (no authority but responsibility?)
  • Delegation – interrogating them for every decision they make take
  • Not acknowledging their contribution, restricting salary raises
  • Not providing executive level visibility to staff
  • Forgetting common occasions. (Your staff gives you a Birthday/Christmas card or gift and you never do the same for them)
  • Using coercive power or use of ill tactics to negatively motivate/pressurize them with fear
  • Clearly demonstrating partial judgment or favorism to incompetent members
  • Disregarding the health and welfare of your staff
  • Lack of planning, poor execution and accountability, but expecting others to execute.
  • Criticize others but cannot take criticism from others


Assessment: What’s Your Personal Productivity Style?


We all have different cognitive styles like innovator or adoption among others. Knowing one’s cognitive style helps s/he to manage his/her personal time better, improve performance; knowing cognitive style helps individual become more productive. Carson Tatle in this HBR article has designed assessment to help us understand our own style—how we think, learn, and communicate best. As we take this assessment it guides us with productivity tips that like-minded people have found most effective.

Here is the link to productivity style assessment.


Difference Between Successful and Very Successful People

Greg McKeown, the linkedin influencer has posted an article on professional social networking site linkedin highlighting differences between successful and very successful people. Some of the points he has mentioned are

Very Successful people are highly selective and says NO to almost everything

For instance as quoted by Warren Buffet “The difference between successful people and very successful people is that very successful people say no to almost everything.”

Highly successful people rest well so they are charged enough to deliver peak performance

Highly successful people do not consider play/sport as waste of time, rather they think that play is essential for promote creativity

Very successful people are excellent listener on the contrary the perception that they are ready to jump with answers

For more such differences do visit this linkedin article.


8 Steps to Turn Around an Underperforming Employee and Get A Struggling Employee Back On Track

In this article Minda Zetlin talks about important career management aspect and leadership traits wherein instead of firing an underperforming team member and making his life vulnerable check if you can do few things beforehand. Some of the things you should be doing are (as Minda Zetlin puts)

  • Focus on two issues/Improvement areas maximum at any given time
  • Be specific but restrain from being overtly specific; try and understand the reasons of failure/lack of progress/desired improvement
  • Get their commitment on specific improvements
  • Instill a confidence in them, let them be aware that you are on his/her side to help him/her improve


Questions Every Project Manager Should Ask to Ensure Project Success (Project Management)

Project Management

In this ZilicusPM blog post where we deliberated about why it is important for a project manager to keep asking questions and seek clear, satisfying answers to ensure project management success. Project manager needs to ask questions persistently right from the beginning of the project throughout the lifecycle of the project till closure of the project. Having clear answers helps project manager know project objectives, course better. The answers may not be satisfactory but s/he can find appropriate way to avoid project failure. Some of these questions PM should ask are

  • What are the business objectives to be achieved with delivery of this project?
  • How are these business objectives aligned to organization’s overall business strategy?
  • What are the limitations and assumptions associated with this project? (in terms of cost, resources, time, and scope)
  • Is there any other project dependent on this project or vice-versa? How are they expected to be delivered in tandem?
  • How are we going to evaluate realization of benefits?
  • How will be stakeholder informed/communicated whenever major deliverables are delivered?
  • What is the business case for this unplanned change – how it is aligned with overall business strategy, desired business benefit?
  • Okay, if we decide to do this change, how will it affect our course and ability to meet desired project objectives?
  • Are we able to deliver project in a manner to meet project objectives?
  • Are we able to deliver project in a manner to deliver business benefits?

About Zilicus

Zilicus offers the best project portfolio management tool ZilicusPM, with robust project management tools capabilities and easy ways to track project management KPI,

Know more about project portfolio management, Gantt chart, best project management tool, project management office, project management tips, project planning guide, project risk management, project scope management, effective project management, project manager guides and know more about Project Portfolio Management Software, Project Management Software Guide.


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I am a co-founder of Zilicus Solution and I write about project management, collaboration, productivity, project management software, cloud computing, requirement management and business empowerment.