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30 April 2018

Creative Thinking: Unleashing The Other Side of You

David A. Zimmer Print

Creative Thinking: Unleashing The Other Side of You

In solving problems, many times we drive to the root cause trying to fix the underlining issue believing the situation will be resolved. As we have seen in other articles concerning thinking, this result is not always what we need. As we saw in systems thinking, pushing on one aspect of the problem only exacerbates issues in other areas of the system. Creative thinking is another method of approaching a problem which might bring about a different outcome, in some cases, a superior one to the root cause analysis.

20 February 2017

Systems Thinking: Understanding Consequences of Thought

David A. Zimmer Print


Systems Thinking: Understanding Consequences of Thought


We have all heard of Critical Thinking. While thinking critically, we analyze the current situation, whether it is a problem to be solved, a riddle to be unraveled, or a decision to be made and break it into smaller pieces – we project managers call that decomposition and thinkers call it reduction – to understand what we need to understand. We assume by understanding the parts, we’ll understand the whole. Many times, the assumption is correct, yet we can still miss important aspects of the situation.

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21 January 2016

Strategic Thinking: Creating the Future from the Present

David A. Zimmer Print


Strategic Thinking: Creating the Future from the Present

Can we see the future? Can we predict the future? Those who think strategically come the closest to what we would call predicting the future. Strategic thinking takes the present and creates a future through vision, decision, planning and doing. Strategic thinkers communicate a vision and motivate a team to produce a new reality.


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18 January 2016

Visionary Thinking: Alternative Futures

David A. Zimmer Print

Visionary Thinking: Alternative Futures

Visionary Thinking Components:

Visionary thinking consists of the following components:
  • Creativity (creative thinking),
  • Futuristic, progressive ideas,
  • Directional path(s) to the future state, and
  • Tangible concepts others can grasp and accomplish.
Check any book discussing leadership and one core competency always mentioned as needed by leaders is vision.  A good leader has a vision.

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13 January 2016

Think About Thinking: 9 Thinking Modalities

David A. Zimmer Print

Think About Thinking: 9 Thinking Modalities


Have you ever thought about thinking? Probably the most impactful statement said to me in my life was from a gentleman whose name I don’t remember.  He remarked, “You think the most important thing in life is faith. I think the most important thing in life is to think. Most people never think about thinking. Think about thinking.” I still think the most important thing about life is faith, but I sure have thought a lot about thinking these past 30 years since he made that comment.

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12 January 2016

Is it QA or QC? What’s the Difference?

David A. Zimmer Print

Is it QA or QC? What’s the Difference?

PMBOK® Guide Definition:

Quality Assurance (QA): The process of auditing the quality requirements and the results from quality control measurements to ensure the appropriate quality standards and operational definitions are used.

Quality Control (QC): The process of monitoring and recording results of executing the quality activities to assess performance and recommend necessary changes.

Practical Definition:

Quality Assurance (QA): The processes of comparing the project activity results against the Quality Plan requirements to determine if the outcomes are within the acceptable quality tolerance ranges and creating the plans to align out-of-spec results within the tolerance ranges.

Quality Control (QC): Monitoring the project work results to determine if they comply with the quality standards set out in the Quality Management Plan.


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01 March 2015

WBS: Work Breakdown Structure or Wild Bovine Secretion

David A. Zimmer
David A. Zimmer, PMP
Chief Project Professor
American Eagle Group
Print

WBS: Work Breakdown Structure or
Wild Bovine Secretion

PMBOK® Guide Definition:

Work Breakdown Structure (WBS): A hierarchical decomposition of the total scope of work to be carried out by the project team to accomplish the project objectives and create the required deliverables.

Work Package: The work defined at the lowest level of the work breakdown structure for which cost and duration can be estimated and managed.

Work Breakdown Structure Component: An entry in the work breakdown structure that can be at any level.

100% Rule: The total of the work at the lowest levels should roll up to the higher levels so that nothing is left out and no extra work is performed.

Practical Definition:

Work Breakdown Structure (WBS):  A deliverable-oriented, hierarchical decomposition of the project. Deliverables (work packages) create the results of the project so the project objectives are met.

Work Package:  The project deliverables defined so they can be accurately scheduled, resourced, and budgeted. They are described as the “nouns” of the project – tangible project results. Also known as work packets.

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