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Michael Nir

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Top Stories by Michael Nir

The ongoing challenges of creating the magical bond between team members in small and big endeavors can be elusive. What more, in the last few decades it has become increasingly challenging, since we have been moving from emphasis on social skills and communities to technical and managerial skills. As a result the lore concerning the magic of teams has been lost. When I'm facilitating workshops for business professionals, project managers in software development, seminars for finance and IT professionals, consulting with marketing and supply chain experts, I am surprised to witness their low propensity for soft skills literacy. They know the hard aspects of what needs to be done, however they remain clueless when required to lead the teams that help them accomplish the required objectives. As most of these teams are cross functional in a matrix organization, it is l... (more)

The Agile PMO

Tom Jenkins, the newly appointed PMO manager convened his team. Xavier, Paula and Xing were eager to start work. Tom explained that the PMO rollout is a change process. He gave his team assignments around stakeholder analysis, mapping of communication requirements, and creation of the PMO newsletter. While the team was somewhat puzzled with these activities they moved to fulfill them. Working with the stakeholders, the team captured many complaints pertaining to the current way of work and gathered numerous requests for improvements. Eagerly awaiting their next meeting, which was... (more)

Leadership 101 – Inborn or Learned?

When I facilitate leadership workshops, usually before lunch break of the first day of three, there always appears this question. It emerges from the table on the farther right corner of the room. They have been quiet until now at that table, listening attentively but refraining from questions. They participated during the morning ice breakers, but have receded to the comfort of the corner. During my occasional strolls, I urge them to comment and question, and it is partially fruitful. And then - Bang!!! The question is asked. Almost blurted in a half apologetic tone, the person ... (more)

Agile 101: Product Owner - Improved Insight into Customer Needs

In a Scrum-Agile project management environment, the product owner acts as a catalyst of change in the organization, enabling value creation through projects and products. Product owners create the required link between how the business would look like in the future and the current state. The product owner is a key facilitator within the organization in bridging the client and the business community with the Agile development team. Most of what a product owner performs can be defined in the broader sense as: 1) Creating and increasing value for the business, and 2) Eliminating and... (more)

Practical and Proven Ideas for Stakeholder Leadership - Bear in Mind

The first step in building support within the greater stakeholder community is identifying the various stakeholder groups and individuals impacting the project/activities and analyzing their attitudes. Identifying stakeholders can be completed alone or with a small team. Since analyzing them is a sensitive undertaking, it makes sense to perform the activity with the kernel project team, ensuring the output of the analysis remains within the team. The objective of stakeholder analysis is to produce a list of stakeholders that might influence the outcome of the project. Once the lis... (more)