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Saturday, May 18, 2013

How to Handle Conflict

Conflict in the workplace is a very personal thing, and it can be frightening, paralyzing. We live comfortably with differences, and we can handle disagreement. Conflict, though, is a dread.

When belligerence erupts in my face, directed very personally at me – with no doubt that I am the one deserving of condemnation, contempt and insult – I burn with humiliation.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Project Politician

The project manager is the designated expediter of unrealistic expectations. That calls for superb political skills, and an extra gear for creativity.

If this thing is a real project, the stakeholders with the hammer – the ones high in the sponsoring organization – are sure there’s a pot of gold somewhere in that fog of uncertainty, and they’re often impatient for the project manager to deliver it to them.

They are both the investors and the customers of the project. You can’t expect them to pour unlimited resources into the effort, and it’s not their job to figure out how to get the desired result. But they sure do want that payoff.