Author: Justin Scoville

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What Are Communication Channels and Why Do They Matter?

As project managers, perhaps our biggest value-add is the fact that we set up a Communications Plan to regulate the flow of communication throughout a project’s life cycle. Scheduled internal and external status calls, weekly executive reports, informal 1:1 meetings, agreed-upon standards for client communication, and other tools and techniques allow us to be plugged in to everything going on within a project’s universe.

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What is a Sipoc Diagram and Why It Matters

Imagine your team recently missed the majority of its performance benchmarks for the previous performance year. You’ve racked your brain to try and identify what the root causes are, to no avail. Team discussions haven’t yielded any fruit either. What should you do?

Luckily, there is an answer. You should fill out a SIPOC diagram. (No, not Tupac). SIPOC stands for Supplier-Inputs-Processes-Outputs-Customers.

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What is the Helium Stick and Why Does It Matter?

I’ve been through a few team building exercises in my day. Most team building activities become punchlines during water cooler conversations in the office. Did sitting on each other’s laps during the fabled “Trust Circle” improve your team’s performance? Right, didn’t think so. That’s just one example.

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What is the Gemba Walk and Why Does it Matter?

In process improvement, the Gemba Walk is a technique used by managers in a manufacturing setting to gather real-time, observational insight into the actual work being performed by a team. (Genba is the Japanese word for “real thing”). The purpose isn’t to critique employee performance or to enforce policy; rather, it’s an opportunity for the production team to collaborate with the goal of discovering (usually incremental) improvements to existing proce

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