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43: Gentle Intervention

Friday, December 6, 2013

The Project
I have just finished chapter 6 (implementing program management) but had to go back and make a few changes to earlier chapters to keep everything consistent. Just starting on chapter 7 (managing a program) and I’ll end up having to make changes to chapter 6 so I don’t duplicate anything. There’s a nice symmetry to all this.

Many things can cause conflicts on a project: schedules, budgets, technical opinions and administrative procedures to name but a few.  The project manager has to deal with these conflicts to keep the project on track and I have known some project managers that take the approach of confronting problems head on.  

The Way  
The wise project manager takes a more gentle approach.  If there is a problem, he tries to identify the cause of the difficulty.  If someone is being difficult, the wise project manager is assertive about the issue but does not over-react.  He is gentle with them and explains what he wants to achieve.  But if that doesn’t work, he still does not over-react, he steps back and yields knowing that their resistance will relax.  The wise project manager realises how much how little can achieve.  

The softest thing in the universe,  
Overcomes the hardest.  
That which has no substance,  
Can penetrate where there is no space.  
I thus understand the value of being motiveless.  
Teaching without words.  

42: Creative Energy

Friday, November 29, 2013

I really needed some creative energy today as I’m going round in circles with chapter six (implementing program management) and can’t figure out how to phrase things. Gave up and went down to The Bridge Inn for a pint of Yellowhammer before lunch and the problem is diminished – I’m taking the afternoon off and forgetting about it!

Creativity in projects often comes from the interaction between opposites.  If everyone on the project is in total harmony and agreement things will be very peaceful but there will be no spark.  Getting the team round a table and discussing an issue or a challenge can often lead to sparks flying but that can prove to be a very creative process.  

A poor project manager will try to force others to do what they want and will ultimately be undone by it.  The wise project manager acts in a facilitation role rather than trying to drive the team.  

The Way  
In order to lead the wise project manager learns how to follow.  In order to prosper the wise project manager learns to run the project simply.  The natural balance of nature and of the team will ensure the right outcome.  Follow others, live simply and encourage the creativity of the team.  

Men dislike that which is helpless, insignificant or bad,  
But this is how kings and lords describe themselves.  
When things diminish, they will increase.  
When things increase, they will diminish.  
What the ancients taught, I will also teach.  
That which is strong has no control over its death.  
This will be the basis of my teaching.  

Announcing Reviews in Google Places for Business

Monday, November 25, 2013

People come to Google to search for information about local shops and restaurants so they can make the best plans and purchases. That’s why as a business owner, you want to make sure you put your best foot forward online. With a quick search, locals -- or even people new in town -- can read reviews from your regulars to find the right place for a romantic dinner, a prize-winning turkey, or the perfect (last-minute) present for Mom.



Today, we’re introducing Reviews in Google Places for Business. Now you can learn what your customers are saying about your business on Google and across the web, in one place. If you have a verified business listing, you will now see your customer ratings and reviews in the easy-to-use review inbox.

Read and respond to customer reviews in the reviews inbox

Easily respond to customer reviews
Reviews also allows you to start a conversation with your customers by directly responding to comments left by users on Google. Are your customers happy with your service? Thank them for the kind words so they recommend you to their friends. Do they mention some areas for improvement? Ask them for suggestions so they visit you again.

And if you feel your business deserves more good reviews, or if you are missing feedback on your work, all you need to do now is to encourage your customers to post reviews on your Google+ page.

Business owners using the new Places for Business interface can now find the Reviews tab when they log into their dashboard as usual.

Not verified yet? Seize the moment and get started now at www.google.com/places.

 

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