Tag Archives: PMI

Recent Travels & New Ideas

Last month I had the pleasure of presenting at the annual meeting of PMI (Project Management Institute) Great Lakes chapter. The meeting took place at the Management Education Center in Troy, Michigan.

The topic, Agile in Action, was one that I know well, as I’ve presented it at the PMI-NEFL Oceans of Opportunity conference in September 2015 and online at the Microsoft Project Virtual Conference in February 2016.

So what does “Agile in Action” mean?  Let me ask you this first: Are you using Agile in the workplace?  Yes?! Well…maybe; well, we use it …sometimes. Agile is one of those methodologies that seems to make sense on the surface but does not always translate easily into real-life situations. This presentation took the audience from Agile ground zero to using actual Agile techniques that could be taken back to work immediately.

As part of my presentation, the following Agile topics were discussed, and included lots of hands-on exercises.

  • Agile approach versus traditional scheduling
  • What is a User Story and how is it used?
  • What is Planning Poker and how is it used?
  • Risk vs Value management
  • Advanced burndown chart interpretation

Those of you who know me well, know that I’m never in one place for long. Next I’ll be presenting Agile in Action and Best Practices in Schedule Development for the PMI Northeast Florida Conference on April 7th and 8th, 2017 in Jacksonville, Florida.

Did you see me at the PMI Great Lakes chapter event? Drop me a line and let me know what you found most valuable!

Or are you planning to attend the PMI Northeast Florida event? I’d love to hear what you most want to learn about.



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Western Michigan PMI Board Listens to Members

As a Director under the VP of Marketing, I had the opportunity to be part of the Western Michigan PMI (WMPMI) chapter board retreat at the end of July. The goal of the retreat was to  make decisions that will make the chapter more valuable to the members. It was nice to see that the board has truly heard what is important to the members such as:

  • Excellent programs and speakers
  • Networking opportunities
  • Good food with the option to purchase a drink of choice
  • Opportunities to maintain credentials and earn professional development units(PDUs)
  • Easy to navigate website
  • Better ways to appeal to and attract sponsors
  • Formats that bring in new and younger members
  • Keeping members current with trends in project management

The most interesting parts of the meeting was where board members would point out that we should stop trying to solve the problem before we identify the problem and have a direction. Just like other project teams I have been on, everyone has an idea, but until you know what your focus is, the ideas are not really useful.  Sometimes even the most experienced project managers struggle to stay focused.

I am excited about many of the things that came out of the retreat and things that all of the members should look forward to:

  • Adjustments to ensure dinner meetings have great food and great speakers
  • Clear chapter message that covers all areas – programs, marketing, education, etc
  • Solutions to problems that organizations want their project managers and potential project managers to be skilled at and ready to handle
  • Better ways to interact with and communicate with our community and the value of project management

Sorry I can’t spoil any surprises, but stay tuned to chapter e-mails and the website for updates (www.wmpmi.org).

Overall it was great to connect up all areas of our chapter to come together for a common purpose – value to our members. I’m happy I took the day to attend this retreat and I’m sure when our members or potential members join us in the fall, they will see how the hard work of the board has paid off.



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