About brettharned

I'm a Project Management Director for Happy Cog in Philadelphia, PA.

#pmchat

Are you on twitter? If not, sign up now! Twitter is a great resource for project managers. You’ll find experts sharing their advice, articles, blog posts, event information, and more. Plus, there is a weekly “event” on Twitter called PM Chat where project managers from all industries gather and talk about specific topics. Tomorrow’s topic will be Digital Project Management, and I’ve been asked to co-host.

So, log on to Twitter tomorrow and look for questions and responses from @pmchat @brettharned (me) and @G0GetterVette (co-host) and also follow the #pmchat hashtag to watch other responses come in. Here’s a sampling of questions:

1.) What kinds of projects do you manage?
2.) How is managing digital projects different from other industries?
3.) How important is project leadership in your industry? (Technical knowledge vs. soft skills)
4.) Are the PMs in this industry PMI-certified? Do companies require certification? What can compensate for lack of experience?
5.) What tips can you give to new PMs who want to go the digital industry or to experienced PMs who would like to jump into the digital industry?
 
Your responses have to be short…it’ll certainly be a challenge, but it’s fun and a good way to hear quick points of view on varying topics. So join us tomorrow at Noon Eastern/11am Central on Twitter.

 

Communication Tactics

I’ve got another question for you:

At what points in projects do you face communication issues? And how do you resolve them?

This time I’m going to provide an answer: An issue that I have often encountered happens early on projects, even before work starts. We can win a project with a client and they sign a contract, but as it turns out in some cases, the client’s lawyers either hand off or sign a version of the contract that isn’t the same scope that was initially presented to them. So, we can get into our work at a reduced scope (based on negotiations), and by the client’s expectations, we are under delivering or planning for less work right from the start. What a bummer.

So how have we adjusted our practice to make sure that our team and our clients are on the same page when it comes to the contract or the scope document? In an initial internal kickoff meeting, we will sit down with the document internally and review it. That will help us to plan our work. In a separate call, we will sit down with our clients and review the scope document in detail. I’ve found that this simple communication tactic helps to clear the air and set expectations early on. It’s simple and doesn’t take a long time. On top of that, we’re re-stating what’s in a signed document, so there is never any argument about scope. We get it out in the open right away. That’s a relief for everyone.

So what are you doing to keep communications flowing with your team, partners, or clients?

When Digital PMs Stop Being Polite and Start Getting Real

2014-08-01 11.34.00 amI’m really looking forward to joining my friend Rachel Gertz on a Louder Than Ten Q&A on August 15 at 3pm EDT. This project that Rachel and Travis Gertz have come up with is great, because it provides another platform for digital project managers to talk more about their work and share and exchange ideas in real time. Sure, Twitter and bloq Q&As are great, but a live chat with interactive audience questions takes it to the next level. It makes it more timely, relevant, and fun.

Of course we’re going to talk about digital PM topics, but we’ve both agreed to just being real. Anyone can talk about tools, process, and blah blah blah…and we do. But this time, we’re going to dig deeper and talk about what makes us tick, not just as digital PMs, but as people. How do you deal with the pressure of projects, personalities, conflict? What makes you you? And how does that impact your work? The tough stuff. The Real stuff.

So, RSVP, submit a question or two, and get to know us. It’s all about this community, man. We’re waiting here with arms outstretched.

You’ve Got Issues

I’m working on a little something and I’d love to hear from my friends (you). It’s simple. Just answer this one question in the comments below.

What is the one issue that you face often on projects?

Maybe there are two or three. Share them, please. And, if you have the time or the inclination, share how you resolve the issue. If I’d like to use your response for my project, I’ll get in touch.

Thank you!

An update on #dpm2014

2014-06-03 11.48.29 amThe past few months have been very busy and extremely rewarding. I’m happy to have three more Digital PM Workshops under my belt. I’ve had the opportunity to meet a ton of friendly, talented digital project managers in Austin, Portland, and Minneapolis. At the same time, I’ve been working with the Bureau of Digital Affairs team to plan the 2014 Digital PM Summit. I’m elated with the plans so far! Continue reading

New Project: A Guide To Project Management

ImageI’m thrilled about a new project I’m working on: A Guide To Project Management. This is the type of project I’ve been thinking about for a while. I’ve thought about how it might be fun to take some of the ideas I’ve written for this blog and expand/update them with new ideas. So how did it happen? I had been talking to Nathan Gilmore at TeamGantt about the Digital PM Summit, which they are generously sponsoring. In one of our conversations, he asked if I’d be interested in working on a project with them. I was honored to be asked to write the series, so I jumped on the opportunity. Continue reading

The Digital Project Management Conversation Continues

A few years ago I thought no one cared about project management, or at least taking about how we operate successful projects. That’s basically why I started this blog. I wanted to start a conversation, or at least be a part of it. But things are changing, and it’s great. Over the past year or so, I’m seeing some amazing contributions to the discussion about how we manage our projects. People from all over the web industry—with specialties in design, development, and PM—are speaking and writing about better ways to get work done. We’re seeing conferences and talks pop up all over about the topic, and industry publications are devoting more space to topics relevant to project management. That’s right, folks, project management is here to stay, and net magazine is a publication that’s willing to publish articles and opinions about it. Continue reading