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Showing posts from September, 2010

Should I study for the PMP exam?

I've been considering studying for the PMP exam.  So today in the bookstore I browsed a few PMP exam prep books.   Having just finished a master's in organizational leadership that has quite a focus on teams, I decided to look for areas of overlap.  Places where the PMP aspects of building a team and helping the team perform would be an easy read for me given my recent experience in gradual school.

I found a few pages in the exam prep books - less than 10 total.  They briefly covered Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, Tuckman's Stages of Group Development,  Vroom's Expectancy Theory of Motivation, etc.  All very good stuff.  Having spent a year studying this 10 pages or less, appeared rather brief for an exam guide that wishes to prepare a project manager to optimize a project's performance.

In one guide the process of Manage Project Team is defined:

"3.5.5 Manage Project Team

Manage Project Team is the process of tracking team member performance, providing feed…

Creativity - can you get it from a Handbook?

I enjoy reading about creativity, I hope that some of it rubs off on me.  Here's a new book I just bought, very creative, a colorful book, full of ideas and exercises.  I hope that I can work through some of the Actions & Movements discussed in the book in my next 37 days.


"Life is a Verb; 37 days to wake up, be mindful, and live intentionally" by Patti Digh

And while browsing the bookstore my wife found this book.  The title gets your attention.

"The International Handbook of Creativity" edited by James Kaufman & Robert Sternberg

However one has to wonder about the publisher, Cambridge, did they even read the book, did the editors read the chapters?  Is there one ounce of creativity in the lot of them?  Watch the video of the thumb through - then watch the video of Life is a Verb - which one would you buy? I did a video - but it got lost in the recycle bin of Google's blogger site.  So just cruise over to Amazon and check out each book...


And here …

Want "super Wi-Fi" - move to Korea

I've just read that the FCC chairman is claiming that 'Super Wi-Fi' is coming to the US.  This is great news.  But is it realistic?  Don't we currently have the fastest Internet around?  We are #1 - right?

No - recent facts are that the US ranks 16th globally in Internet speed.  (source: State of the Internet Q1 2010 report by Akamai).  Yes, South Korea is #1 (12 Mbps average speed).


While I welcome the new super Wi-Fi that is being proposed - the longer wavelengths will have much better penetration and reach.  I believe fast internet is important to our economy and I believe we could do better.  The examples are available, the data is known (read the Akamai report).  Obama’s stimulus package ($789 Billion) allocated $7.2 B for broadband funding.  I don't know if the money has been spent yet, but it would not show up in the Q1 2010 report.

On a side note - I find it ironic that CNN used a picture of kids holding up their OLPC XO laptops that use peer to peer netwo…

Golden Gates Paper Bridge - Group Initiative

The Golden Gates Paper Bridge Group Initiative

This group initiative is from the UNC-Charlotte's Venture Group Initiatives Manual.

I've used this initiative to discuss team work, leadership, followership, understanding the client and may other issues that arise during the debriefing.

In one training at SolutionsIQ the teams were given the requirements (build a bridge of 12" span - but when the customer acceptance was done the boat that had to pass under the bridge had towers and antenna that exceeded the specification height.  The teams had to negotiate with the Product Owner on the physical acceptance test - a toy boat passing under the bridge.

One team created their own "Unit-Test" - the box.

Golden Gates 

(Facilitator Info)

Materials:
60 sheets of paper per group, paper clips per group, approximately 60 feet of string, tape for the string, copies of rules (next page) for each group, a ruler, flip chart for debrief.

Set up:
•  Lay down string in two parallel lin…

Personal Agility - How we planned the Month of Chassing Snow.

In a blog post by Michele Sliger - Personal Agile she has asked her twitter base if people are using Agile techniques to manage their personal lives.  Does the Agile mind set creep into personal lives?  I would hope so, and expect it if the philosophy is sound.

Here is my experience.  Written about the trip my wife and I planned to take when the Banking Meltdown, had dried up most of the software projects back in the winter of 2009.  I walked into my director and suggested that I could take a month without pay and that might be a good thing.  He didn't bat an eye lash - yes, when would you like to leave, are you really coming back?  Yes, I did wish to come back, I enjoyed working for SolutionsIQ.  The timing was great, it was January, 2009 and there were no new projects coming into the pipeline, layoffs were looming and I wanted a sabbatical.  A chance to go ski the best snow between Seattle and Denver.


We have packed up the camper and headed out for a month long ski trip.  We do…