Making Things Happen: Mastering Project Management (Theory in Practice (O'Reilly)) 1st Edition, Kindle Edition

4.2 out of 5 stars 104 ratings
Flip to back Flip to front
Audible Sample Playing... Paused   You are listening to a sample of the Audible narration for this Kindle book.
Learn more
ISBN-13: 978-0596517717
ISBN-10: 0596517718
Why is ISBN important?
ISBN
This bar-code number lets you verify that you're getting exactly the right version or edition of a book. The 13-digit and 10-digit formats both work.
Scan an ISBN with your phone
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
Kindle App Ad
<Embed>
Digital List Price: $31.99

Deliver to your Kindle or other device


Buy for others

Give as a gift or purchase for a team or group.Learn more

Buying and sending eBooks to others


Select quantity
Buy and send eBooks
Recipients can read on any device

Additional gift options are available when buying one eBook at a time.  Learn more


These ebooks can only be redeemed by recipients in the US. Redemption links and eBooks cannot be resold.

Quantity: 
This item has a maximum order quantity limit.

Today through selected date:

Rental price is determined by end date.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

See all formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Kindle
$18.49

The Amazon Book Review
The Amazon Book Review
Book recommendations, author interviews, editors' picks, and more. Read it now
click to open popover

Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
    Apple
  • Android
    Android
  • Windows Phone
    Windows Phone
  • Click here to download from Amazon appstore
    Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

kcpAppSendButton
Amazon Business : Save 25% off first $200 of business supplies. Register a free business account

From the Publisher

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Based on his nine years of experience as a program manager for Microsoft’s biggest projects, Berkun explains to technical and non-technical readers alike what it takes to lead critical projects from start to finish. Here are 16 chapters on the critical and common challenges of leading projects and managing teams, diagrams, photography, and war stories of success and failure. Berkun offers practical tools and methods to make sure your projects succeed.

What To Do When Things Go Wrong
From Making Things Happen, Chapter 11

1. Calm down. Nothing makes a situation worse than basing your actions on fear, anger, or frustration. If something bad happens to you, you will have these emotions whether you’re aware of them or not. They will also influence your thinking and behavior whether you’re aware of it or not. (Rule of thumb: the less aware you are of your feelings, the more vulnerable you are to them influencing you.) Don’t flinch or overreact—be patient, keep breathing, and pay attention.

2. Evaluate the problem in relation to the project. Just because someone else thinks the sky has fallen doesn’t mean that it has. Is this really a problem at all? Whose problem is it? How much of the project (or its goals) is at risk or may need to change because of this situation: 5%? 20%? 90%? Put things in perspective. Will anyone die because of this mistake (you’re not a brain surgeon, are you?)? Will any cities be leveled? Plagues delivered on the innocent? Help everyone frame the problem to the right emotional and intellectual scale. Ask tons of questions and get people thinking rather than reacting. Work to eliminate assumptions. Make sure you have a tangible understanding of the problem and its true impact. Then, prioritize: emergency (now!), big concern (today), minor concern (this or next week), bogus (never). Know how long your fuse is to respond and prioritize this new issue against all existing work. If it’s a bogus issue, make sure whoever cried wolf learns some new questions to ask before raising the red flag again.

3. Calm down again. Now that you know something about the problem, you might really get upset (“How could those idiots let happen!?”). Find a way to express emotions safely: scream at the sky, workout at the gym, or talk to a friend. But do express them. Know what works for you, and use it. Then return to the problem. Not only do you need to be calm to make good decisions, but you need your team to be calm. Pay attention to who is upset and help them calm down. Humor, candor, food, and drink are good places to start. Being calm and collected yourself goes a long way toward calming others. And taking responsibility for the situation (see the later section “Take responsibility”), regardless of whose fault it was, accelerates a team’s recovery from a problem.

4. Get the right people in the room Any major problem won’t impact you alone. Identify who else is most responsible, knowledgeable, and useful and get them in together straight away. Pull them out of other meetings and tasks: if it’s urgent, act with urgency, and interrupt anything that stands in your way. Sit them down, close the door, and run through what you learned in step 2. Keep this group small; the more complex the issue, the smaller the group should be. Also, consider that (often) you might not be part of this group: get the people in the room, communicate the problem, and then delegate. Offer your support, but get out of their way (seriously—leave the room if you’re not needed). Clearly identify who is in charge for driving this issue to resolution, whether it’s you or someone else.

5. Explore alternatives. After answering any questions and clarifying the situation, figure out what your options are. Sometimes this might take some research: delegate it out. Make sure it’s flagged as urgent if necessary; don’t ever assume people understand how urgent something is. Be as specific as possible in your expectation for when answers are needed.

6. Make the simplest plan. Weigh the options, pick the best choice, and make a simple plan. The best available choice is the best available choice, no matter how much it sucks (a crisis is not the time for idealism). The more urgent the issue, the simpler your plan. The bigger the hole you’re in, the more direct your path out of it should be. Break the plan into simple steps to make sure no one gets confused. Identify two lists of people: those whose approval you need for the plan, and those who need to be informed of the plan before it is executed. Go to the first group, present the plan, consider their feedback, and get their support. Then communicate that information to the second group.

7. Execute. Make it happen. Ensure whoever is doing the work was involved in the process and has an intimate understanding of why he’s doing it. There is no room for assumption or ambiguity. Have specific checkpoints (hourly, daily, weekly) to make sure the plan has the desired effect and to force you and others in power to consider any additional effort that needs to be spent on this issue. If new problems do arise, start over at step 1.

8. Debrief. After the fire is out, get the right people in the room and generate a list of lessons learned. (This group may be different from the right people in step 4 because you want to include people impacted by, but not involved in, the decision process.) Ask the question: “What can we do next time to avoid this?” The bigger the issue, the more answers you’ll have to this question. Prioritize the list. Consider who should be responsible for making sure each of the first few items happens.

--This text refers to the paperback edition.

About the Author

Scott Berkun worked on the Internet Explorer team at Microsoft from 1994-1999 and left the company in 2003 with the goal of writing enough books to fill a shelf. The Myths of Innovation is his second book: he wrote the best seller, The Art of Project Management (O'Reilly 2005). He makes a living writing, teaching and speaking. He teaches a graduate course in creative thinking at the University of Washington, runs the sacred places architecture tour at NYC's GEL conference, and writes about innovation, design and management on his personal website. --This text refers to the paperback edition.

Product details

Customer reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5
104 customer ratings
How does Amazon calculate star ratings?
Reviewed in the United States on December 10, 2013
Verified Purchase
14 people found this helpful
Comment Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on July 31, 2018
Verified Purchase
One person found this helpful
Comment Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on January 20, 2020
Verified Purchase
Reviewed in the United States on March 26, 2013
Verified Purchase
5 people found this helpful
Comment Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on March 20, 2012
Verified Purchase
5 people found this helpful
Comment Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on April 11, 2018
Verified Purchase
One person found this helpful
Comment Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on November 15, 2018
Verified Purchase
Reviewed in the United States on December 15, 2018
Verified Purchase
One person found this helpful
Comment Report abuse

Top international reviews

Ian M.
5.0 out of 5 stars The PM bible
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 11, 2020
Verified Purchase
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse
Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 18, 2017
Verified Purchase
One person found this helpful
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse
Nirmal Lotay
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 7, 2015
Verified Purchase
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse
jonathan ryding
5.0 out of 5 stars Own this book.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 25, 2018
Verified Purchase
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse
Alessio
5.0 out of 5 stars Ottimo libro
Reviewed in Italy on March 22, 2020
Verified Purchase
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse
Renzoismypuggle
3.0 out of 5 stars Useful if all you need is a basic introduction.
Reviewed in Canada on January 17, 2017
Verified Purchase
One person found this helpful
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse
efraín arévalo
4.0 out of 5 stars Making things happen
Reviewed in Mexico on November 6, 2016
Verified Purchase
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse
S. Trudel
5.0 out of 5 stars This book addresses the soft stuff good project managers must apply
Reviewed in Canada on February 6, 2013
Verified Purchase
2 people found this helpful
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse
Ernesto
5.0 out of 5 stars Muy claro en el lenguaje
Reviewed in Mexico on June 26, 2019
Verified Purchase
review image
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse
Tarek
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect
Reviewed in Canada on July 28, 2019
Verified Purchase
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse
Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Reviewed in Canada on November 20, 2016
Verified Purchase
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse
statuescher
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Bad
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 3, 2011
Verified Purchase
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse
RAMAKRISHNA PARUPALLI
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Reviewed in India on December 11, 2014
Verified Purchase
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse
Amazon Kunde
4.0 out of 5 stars Angenehm überrascht,
Reviewed in Germany on October 27, 2015
Verified Purchase
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse
lawrence
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 13, 2015
Verified Purchase
Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Report abuse