Project Management

Time to Bring on your Impact Player

Impact PlayerI was comparing my client’s business to a football team the other week.

I’d just been through a DISC personality profiling team day which shows your mix of red (directness), yellow (ideas), green (teamwork) & blue (analysis). I’m a strong equal mix of red & blue, the former useful for running a business, the latter from years of working in finance.

To illustrate it, the DISC profile on our trainer… Continue reading →

Finally, we’re forecasting growth

forecasting growthA recent report commissioned by Bibby Financial Services and reported in Bdaily has shown that 71% of Yorkshire’s smaller businesses are forecasting growth over the next 3 months.

Many firms have been trading cautiously but since late last year there’s been a strong wave of confidence envelop the country.

There has been a strong rise in recruitment with a quarter having already taken on more staff and half saying they… Continue reading →

5 Ways to Sort out your Spreadsheets

Sort out your SpreadsheetsYou’re not alone. Every company I’ve worked for uses Excel too much.

Business systems get updated periodically, every 5-10 years and in between times, Excel fills in as an easy quick way of getting an answer. But that quick ad hoc answer becomes the long term solution.

You’d expect integrated systems at a company like Orange. But when I worked there, they used huge complicated spreadsheets to do their budgets.… Continue reading →

5 Ways a Graduate can Help your Sales Director

help your sales director

If you’re not generating as many leads or opportunities as you’d like, it may be worth considering help of a different kind.

A graduate could help your Sales Director by approaching their problems from a different angle. Perhaps they help to focus on customer analysis.

Maybe your company isn’t up to date with technology; using a single business system where all staff use the same data which can be drilled… Continue reading →

5 Ways a Graduate can Help your Finance Director

help your finance directorA graduate can help your Finance Director by addressing some of the problems which they don’t have either the time or ability to deal with.

These are issues that will help you run the company better and in some cases you are having to handle yourself.

Perhaps the Finance Director has been with the company since it began and their skills don’t extend beyond preparing the accounts. Maybe they don’t… Continue reading →

Make Decisions Small and Regular

make decisions smallSmall businesses are quick on their feet and can make decisions small and regular. It’s a big advantage you hold over larger organisations who have long drawn out decision making processes.

What may take them weeks to act on, can be done immediately by a smaller company.

Taking big decisions adds risk, slows down activity and reduces flexibility. Save it until you’re larger.

This may sound like I’m a bit… Continue reading →

Book Review – ReWork by Jason Fried

ReWorkReWork by Jason Fried is all about modern business practices. How to work smarter with less. How to get more from your people.

I knew I’d like the book and I wasn’t disappointed.

His company, 37 Signals has created Basecamp the project management tool my graduates use on client projects. I also use HighriseHQ as my Contact Management solution.

It is very easy to read, divided into small sections each… Continue reading →

Tracking Britain’s Most Brutal Race

trackingThe Spine, Britain’s most brutal race took place recently. a continuous run within 7 days along the 268 mile Pennine Way. The competitors had to cope with wind, snow, plenty of rain and mist as well as lethal icy paving. The worst part was sleep deprivation. Only 30 completed out of 75 starters.

A lot of the time they were travelling through the night. One competitor covered 258 miles… Continue reading →

7 Key Elements of Successful Projects in Small Businesses

successful projects

Successful projects are as much about planning and structure as they are about delivery. Larger organisations will look to Prince 2 as the basis for the project.

However it is far too unwieldy for smaller businesses. Yet if you strip Prince 2 back to the basics there is a framework that would be flexible enough for a simple project. My Mentored Graduate Programme incorporates all the elements despite there… Continue reading →

5 Project Failures and What I’ve Learnt

project failuresSo many projects set up with good intentions end up not delivering the full benefits. Mine included. I’ve had a host of project failures to my name.

I figure it’s fine to make a mistake, but I should learn from it. Which is why I thought it worth sharing 5 project failures I’ve made and what I’ve learnt from those mistakes.

1. Wrong scope

I’d been at a client for… Continue reading →