“Remember, Scrooge, Time is Short …

... and suddenly you're not there any more." - The Ghost of Christmas Present, enjoying a memento mori moment A repeating theme in my feed reader has been the drive to "work different"; clunky grammar aside, we need to change the way we communicate and collaborate, increase our focus on innovation, and spend less time in pointless meetings. On that latter point, I read this article on my latest flight; Mankins talks about the galling amount of time spent in…

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Opportunity within End-Of-Year Performance Reviews

I'm working this holiday week to get the majority of the written work completed for my 2013 Performance Reviews; I realize it's something that folks do not enjoy doing, but I see it as an incredibly important effort. I like to think my organization and I are doing a fairly good job of communicating on a regular basis, but the structure and the formality of the annual Review process ensures that we are "on the same page" regarding the critical…

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Where does Innovation come from?

Like most organizations, we are talking a lot internally about Innovation - the Great Ideas that will transform the company and deliver top-line revenue and high-value earnings growth. The trick, of course, if figuring out how to make that Innovation happen - as if you could plan it out in advance, on schedule to make your quarter-end. It's not that easy - but then again, maybe it's not that hard. Check out this video from Steven Johnson - another terrific…

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Four tools to bridge from Raw Productivity to Sustainable Results

I've noticed a definite trend in the "best practices" wing of the Productivity building; it goes by many names and takes on a few different forms, but the idea is rooted in a few simple concepts: Focus on the Critical Few: Multitasking does not work - plan for doing three things per day, and allocate your time accordingly Done is Better than Perfect: Learn to recognize "good enough", perfection is the enemy of progress. Ignore Details Early On: Get a skeleton out…

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Idle Time is a Good Thing for IT

Lots of good conversations recently about managing IT, Finance, and other constrained resources for projects. We have implemented tools to model available time; when trying to understand what new work can get added to the pile, it helps immeasurably when you understand how much time you have available, plus what else has been committed. This has become a powerful process for managing chronically constrained resources - but one side effect is that other folks on the team can find themselves…

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