Are we too busy with the urgent to focus on the important?


Published on

This was a thought provoking talk on project leadership that is aimed to help one to lead oneself and others more effectively in a project context.

In this talk, Susanne Madsen discussed the differences between management and leadership and how it relates to a project manager. Delegates learned to avoid fire fighting, unhappy clients and project failure and instead use the project they are currently working on to propel themselves to the next level.

Through powerful strategies, Susanne showed how one can increase performance, become a project leader, and differentiate oneself from the competition.

No matter one's role or level of experience there were powerful lessons to be learned from this talk:

Understanding the differences between management and leadership
Applying the strategies that will make you a project leader
Building effective relationships with stakeholders
Building a highly motivated team
Continuously improving and innovating
Expanding comfort zones
Asking for feedback
Focussing on the 20% of activities that add to 80% of results

Published in: Business, Technology
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Are we too busy with the urgent to focus on the important?

  1. 1. Susanne Madsen Project Management Leadership - Are we too busy with the urgent to focus on the important?
  2. 2. Susanne Madsen § 17+ years experience as a project and programme manager § Managed programmes of up to $30m § PRINCE2 and MSP Practitioner § Corporate and Executive Coach § Trainer, Speaker, Consultant § Published book “The Project Management Coaching Workbook – Six Steps to Unleashing Your Potential”
  3. 3. Management Leadership LeadershipManagement § Task-oriented § Skills-based § Events and processes § Methods, calculations § Authority § Rational thinking § Knows it all § Tell § Push § People-oriented § Attitude and behaviour § Visionary § Inspirational § Motivational § Values others § Empowers others § Ask § Pull
  4. 4. III IV II I PEOPLE FOCUS Leading through people Inspire people to follow Pull TASK FOCUS Leading through tasks Authority based Push PRO-ACTIVE Focus on the project's strategic vision REACTIVE Focus on immediate issues Pro-active task management - Risk management - Planning - Quality Assurance Pro-active people management - Relationship building - Leading and motivating the team - Proving vision and direction Reactive task management - Urgent issue resolution - Defect handling - Fire-fighting Reactive people management - Interpersonal conflict - People management issues The Project Leadership Matrix™ Project Leadership x
  5. 5. The VIP Model™ § Lead with Vision § Work with Intent § Connect with People
  6. 6. Lead with Vision – how to do it? §  Understand your client’s business §  Focus on needs rather than wants §  Co-own the business case §  Consider tactical AND strategic drivers §  Continuously improve and innovate §  Dare to stand out and take risks §  Ask: What if?
  7. 7. The Time Management Triangle™ 2. Firefighting Crisis Deadlines Urgent Issues Urgent Queries Interpersonal Conflict - 3. Time Wasting Interruptions Trivia Unimportant Mail Unimportant Calls Time Wasting Activities 1. Proactive Planning Risk Mitigation Project Definition Relationship Building Challenging Status Quo Project Controls & Reviews Big picture view; setting the vision
  8. 8. Work with Intent – how to do it? §  Eat that Frog! §  Learn to say “No” §  Start your day with 90 minutes of clear focus! §  Check email less frequently §  Am I inventing things to do to avoid the important? §  Am I being productive or just active? §  Eliminate time waste, interruptions and multitasking §  Use Pareto’s Principle (the 80/20 rule) §  Delegate; train others to take on more responsibility
  9. 9. Success without Stress §  Time management – focus on the important §  Accept that you cannot know it all or do it all §  Delegate and trust others to provide the solution §  Ask for help when needed §  Meditate and centre yourself (quiet time)
  10. 10. A Typical Story... How Project Management Coaching Helped Lisa § Felt overwhelmed; worked long hours; didn’t feel in control; had no-one to delegate to; couldn’t say “no”. § Started training and delegating to others and focusing on the 20% that added to 80% of her results. § Put emphasis on project planning, risk mitigation, team leading and stakeholder management. § As a result, projects are successfully delivered on time. § Leaves the office at 6pm and feels more fulfilled and happy.
  11. 11. Connect with People – how to do it? §  Prioritise people – also those who work remotely! §  Schedule one-2-one meetings for their benefit §  Find out what they like most/least about their job §  Involve people in the decisions that affect them §  Ask questions – don’t just tell people what to do! §  Praise people for a job well done!
  12. 12. Power and Influence Matrix Allies High Low Low High Power and Influence Supportiveness Opponents Walk into the lion’s cage!
  13. 13. Managing senior stakeholders § It is your responsibility to ensure your communication is understood § Spend time getting to know each stakeholder § Ask questions and listen § Be honest! § Partner with them and communicate in a way which suits them
  14. 14. 1.  How can I better lead with Vision? 2.  How can I spend my time more proactively? 3.  How can I better inspire my team to contribute? 4.  What are the 20% that contribute to 80% of my results? 5.  Which important activities have I been putting off? 6.  Who do I need to spend more time with? 7.  What if..? Ask Insightful Questions
  15. 15. Are you ready to expand your comfort zone X X X
  16. 16. Ask for Feedback! §  Ask three questions 1.  What should I stop doing? 2.  What should I start doing? 3.  What should I continue to do? §  Ask your main client or stakeholder 1.  What are you concerned about? 2.  How would you like me to keep you updated? §  Ask your team 1.  How can I better support and challenge you?
  17. 17. FREE Access to Project Management Resources To get FREE access please go to and register your interest § Get access to my personal project management resources § Templates, Worksheets, Webinars, and links to the best project management forums § Risks & Issues log, Project Initiation Document, Steering Committee Presentation etc.
  18. 18. Connect with Susanne Twitter @SusanneMadsen Connect on LinkedIn By: Susanne Madsen ©2012, 8.5” x 11” softcover, 236 pages Available on Amazon and on Kindle.
  19. 19. The Power of Project Leadership – out soon! ©2014. Kogan Page “Susanne's  book  clearly   demonstrates  the  insights  and  tools   to  become  an  inspira8onal  leader.   Highly  recommended.  All  my  team   have  a  copy.  I'm  that  confident  of   the  effect  it  will  have  on  my   business.”     Paul  Daniels,  Managing  Director,   Leadership  and  Management  Ltd.