Berkun begins this chapter by cleverly saying that Project Management is an ability that some people have and others lack. I believe this to be true and it’s not such a bad thing. Some people are born to lead and get things done with others have a hard time with it or just lack the skills to do so. Berkun tells us that being a PM means making things happen, which is very true. He says, ” the ability to make things happen is a combination of knowing how to be a catalyst in a variety of different situations and having the courage to do so.” This is so true. The author talks about his experiences as a PM and how he would make lists of things to do. He says that, making things happens means knowing what is important and when to execute that item or step. I have taken this approach before with making ordered lists and I still do. Sometimes on Fridays before I leave work I will make a list of everything I want to get done on Monday because I am likely to forget over the weekend
Berkun tells us that there are 3 types of ordered lists and those are: the list of goals, the list of features, and the list of work items. If all work together in harmony and people know where each item on their list should go, then there shouldn’t be any problems between everyone in the group. He then discusses the idea of how priority 1 in your ordered list has to stay at the top and you have to remember that it’s important, as Berkun says, “you would die without it.” It can be difficult to see items in this way but it will help in the long run. Berkun then talks about how you have to be committed to prioritizing by saying, “The challenge of prioritization is always more emotional/psychological than intellectual, despite what people say. Just like dieting to lose weight or budgeting to save money, eliminating things you want (but don’t need) requires being disciplined, committed, and focused on the important goals.” I completely agree with him and I know that prioritizing can be a big deal for some people, it’s easier for some.
Overall I found this Chapter to be very helpful as always. I really enjoy Berkun’s style of writing, he is very to the point and his book is easy to read. He also throws in a few jokes every now and then and pokes fun at certain subjects. I have learned much more about prioritizing and how to stay on task. I feel I make a fairly good PM and I do have strong prioritizing skills.
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