OnePager Tip: Shorten Task Names for Clarity

Prior to using OnePager, you didn’t have to consider how much space your project plan’s task or milestone labels would consume in a chart. Regardless of how long they were, you always had to re-type them anyway into whatever other application you were using to create your reports — and most people shortened labels while retyping.  But now that you’re using your actual plan data to drive your visuals, label length is a major consideration.

Take a look at the examples below.  The first has very long labels, while the second uses only what is necessary for the audience to understand what the activity or milestone is.  (Double-click to enlarge each image.)

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Project Reporting for Cavemen

This is the best way to think of the psychology of how we like to absorb information as humans…well, sort of.  Our species has been communicating with drawings for 32,000 years (at least), while reading and writing words are much more recently acquired skills (and still not universal).  Why is this important?

fred-flintstone-will-be-replaced-on-the-fruity-pebbles-box-by-a-wrestlerOne might argue that with the information age, we’re actually taking a turn back toward our ancestral, purely visual selves.  After all, what draws your eye in your social feed or in a business meeting?  Is it text or images?  Right.  The more visual the information is, the more quickly we can absorb it and move onto the next thing.  We’re moving away from focused study to retrieve information and more toward the laziness (or genius?) of receiving information in blips.
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How to Avoid the Death of Your PMO

rip-pmoWe’ve witnessed the collapse of a several large PMOs among our customers. It’s not a pretty sight. The collapse of the largest one started at the top, with the resignation of the PMO director, and ended with the rest of the PMO being completely disassembled. Some of the 100+ PMs were reassigned to individual business units, but most were shown the door. To say the least, it’s a harrowing experience.

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The Missing Project Management Success Metric

We talk a lot about how to build plan communications: the actual reports, visuals, etc. that you will present over the lifetime of your initiative.  But what about the Communications Plan?  …These are two different things that together encompass how you communicate during an initiative.

The Communications Plan is so important to the overall success of projects that we’d even like to suggest that it be a part of your performance metrics.

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