Lighthouse at night, (c) 2009 Martin Belam. Via flickr. (CC BY SA 2.0)

If Your Boss Doesn’t Want You Preventing Problems, What Is Ethical To Do?

E. Forrest Christian Change 3 Comments

Last time I recommended that if you are in an environment where the management rewards “firefighter” project managers rather than PMs who prevent them from ever occurring, you need to let some fires start. (“You Have To Let the Project Break So You Can Prove Yourself By Fixing It“) I wasnt saying start them on your own but simply don’t …

Men of Fort Story operate an azimuth instrument, to measure the angle of splash in sea-target practice. 1942. (reversed)

You Have To Let the Project Break So You Can Prove Yourself By Fixing It

E. Forrest Christian Change 7 Comments

Why do project managers have to create crises on projects to prove that the risk management steps you took are paying off? It’s very common in project environments. The project manager who scrambles to get things done, who stays late to get things fixed, who has problem after problem that gets the attention of management but who then gets things …

Belgian royal conservatory's dome, interior with sun. (c) E. Forrest Christian

IT Models as Transitional Objects

E. Forrest Christian Computers/IT Leave a Comment

David Wastell, who was Senior Lecturer in information systems at University of Manchester, points out that information systems development (ISD) projects are learning endeavors, a movement from one state to another. This learning therefore creates organizational anxiety. He says that models and other IT project deliverables can function as emotional transitional space, using the Tavistock use of the term. ISD …

Traffic signal at Tamil Nadu. (c) 2011 Thamizhpparithi Maari (CC BY SA 3.0)

Replacing Management With Project Management Is Disastrous

E. Forrest Christian Computers/IT, Managing Leave a Comment

CIO (Australia) Magazine had an interesting article last month by Sue Bushell on Information Technology (IT) organizations and their spectacular failure to the business [“Just Deserts”, 2005 May 5]. Bushell quoted Kathryn Cason of Requisite Organization International Institute on the problems of IT being caused by the organizational structure itself: The fact that IT has primarily been pushed into a …

Marine Sgt. at New Orleans, La. By Howard R.Hollem. Library of Congress collection via Flickr.

How to Break Through the “Impermeable Clay Layer” of Middle Managers

E. Forrest Christian Change, Managing 3 Comments

In the last post on implementation, APFG commented that the middle layer in the company is where you have most of the problems. Since almost everyone says this, let’s take a look at why. Let’s admit that it is not always true: the middle layer in a company isn’t always the source of the problems. There are often people at …

Woman Reading, ca. 1890. From National Media Museum—Kodak Gallery Collection (UK), on Flickr.

Bibliography of articles on project risk management and escalation of commitment

E. Forrest Christian Reviews - Articles, Risk Management Leave a Comment

I wanted to note some interesting articles that I found useful in my work with IT over the past few years, including Risk Management and Escalation of Commitment. These articles deal with Project Risk Management. Admittedly, I focus on RM for IT projects, so this is heavily skewed towards development and implementation projects that are computer-related.