“Guess correctly three times and they’ll call you an expert” – said a wise man. In the age of Internet and other mass-media guessing has become especially easy, as every correct prediction could be inflated beyond any proportion while small uncomfortable facts (such as the bankruptcy of companies created by famous business consultants) are downplayed to oblivion.
We are surrounded by Gurus of every possible expertise, offering their enlightened opinion on everything we want to know about, but does it make our life easier? Can we trust the majority of Gurus’ opinions? Should we listen to them at all? Continue reading →
Last week I’ve been talking to a friend who was just editing the final exam for his course “Decision-making in Disaster management”. Living aside the nice feeling of talking to people from the academic environment, there was actually something in our conversation that troubled me to the level of feeling a need to share it with the readers of my blog. Continue reading →
There is nothing new in the fact that timelines established for the projects are rarely met. Actually, we got so used to this part of workplace reality that we consider it a problem only in the most outrageous cases – when the project’s cost exceeded every budgeting expectation or when it outlived its usefulness by becoming irrelevant.
Is there a way to improve this situation? Before we are able to answer this question, we need to understand what prevents us from following the schedule in the first place. Continue reading →
AnyaWorkSmart is back online and will continue with discussion of every aspect of Management that can be improved by fighting Biases. I decided that the first post of the year should deal with a situation where the negative influence of Biases is most critical – our attempts to judge others based on their appearances and actions. Continue reading →
“I’ve been interested with cognitive biases and misconceptions for some time already, reading all available material on the subject, including your blog. However, I noticed that just knowing about biases doesn’t really help to get rid of them. Last week I was talking to a friend about politics and was suddenly faced with a sad reality of failing to see through “Halo effect” bias. What happened was that as we were discussing with my friends a politician who recently achieved infamy by openly demonstrating unwanted behaviors in his private life, I made a statement that someone who behaves this way in his social life has no chance of filling his office properly. It seemed logical to me when I said it, but when my friends pointed to a fact that there is no known correlation between someone’s personal and professional life, I immediately understood that my statement was caused by “halo effect”. This situation made me wondering: is there any benefit in learning about biases, if it only helps you to understand what you already did wrong? Continue reading →
Can you put a non-engineer to lead an IT development team? How effective would be a financial product development team when managed by someone who has no previous experience with financial systems? When looking for someone to fill an executive position in an aviation sales department, should you be looking for someone who has more experience with aviation, a better salesman or A BETTER MANAGER?
I think it’s easy to understand what I’m getting at: there is an eternal argument going on in every possible industry – when looking for Managers, should you prefer people from the same industry or people with good managerial skills but without any previous knowledge of the industry. Continue reading →
You can sometimes hear people complain about their Managers asking too much questions. It somehow seems to them that as Managers are supposed to be experts on what’s going on in the department, they should know everything without asking. The same perception problem arises when Managers interact with each other during meetings, talking only in statements, fearing that asking a question would somehow make them look less competent in the eyes of others. Continue reading →
When I was first asked to participate in a joint effort of PM bloggers to simultaneously publish a series of posts about their field, I asked myself a very simple question: what would be the single most basic thing about Project Management that I would consider critical for everyone to know? Continue reading →
When you start thinking about it, the concept of “best practice” seems very logical – it’s supposed to be the best way to achieve the desired results when dealing with a certain task, which was already proven as such by someone else. Basically, you can call it an OPTIMALWORKING PATTERN.
Of course, if you keep thinking about it, you’ll notice several potential problems, both in the concept itself and in how it’s used in reality. Because, as we all know, when any abstract concept is applied to a real situation, problems tend to arise. Continue reading →