clear decisions™ regularly releases "short, sharp & shiny" a free distribution containing hints, tips and tools for project management professionals and business improvement advocates.
As the name suggests these distributions are short, to the point and easy to read. The aim of these publications is to deliver the quickest win for our readers in the shortest amount of time.
To sign up for these releases lodge your details via the contact us page.
"What to do If the year got away from you"
The was our first edition of short sharp and shiny, and it gave five steps to help you kick start your projects. We all start the year with great intentions. It has happened to all of us, we all have projects and changes that we're planning to do but we get busy and they don't quite make it back to the work table. To read these five steps which assist in starting your projects please click here
"The elephant in the room"
Was the title of the second edition. The article started; its that time of the year again, we spend the lead up to the end of financial year thinking, talking, planning for the next financial year. How to increase sales, how to get new clients, grow and expand. But we don't talk about what isn't working. We don't talk about the elephant in the room... please click here to read more
"Change is not a dirty word!"
In our third article we addressed the topic of change. "Change can take many forms. It can create such an impact on our business and personal lives. In the business world we see change so often. The problem is most times it hasn't been implemented well. The effect of this can be significant on a business: demotivated and frustrated staff, broken processes, unused software etc. So what went wrong? There can be a number of reasons but usually it is the basic principle: Change Needs Management..." to read more please click here
"does your right hand know what your left hand is doing?"
Our fourth edition explored the Importance of Documenting Procedures. It started "As an executive assistant, and predominantly working in the administration area of businesses, I have encountered first hand the importance of documenting procedures for all roles/tasks within a company..." to continue reading this article please click here
"assumptions - the silent assassin"
In our fifth article, which was released in August 2011 we gave tips on how to manage assumptions. Mid way through the article we wrote "Assumptions can take two distinct forms - things that we take from granted that will stay the same, or things we have to assume because we don't know everything! These are the quiet killers in the project jungle. They move with stealth and speed, quietly sneaking up on it's unexpected prey (the project manager)..." to read this article in it's entirety please click here
"doing more with less"
We identified 5 ways in which businesses can learn how to "Do More with Less" in our sixth edition of Short Sharp and Shiny. "How many us think that to get more done, we need to spend more time doing the work, that if you work 10 hours a day you will achieve more than if you work 7 hours a day. That someone who works 6 days a week will do more work than a person who works 5 days a week. More work = more results. This is not always the case, the key is to work smarter not harder..." please click here to read the whole article.
"in the silly season remember..."
Was the title of our edition that we released in November and in it we discussed and gave 5 tips on how to communicate more productively and effectively. "The key to effective communication is not only mastering your own communication style, but also in understanding the styles of others, but the good news is that communication skills can be learned. The difficulty is remembering this when you are busy..." if you would like to read the entire article please click here
"down with Santa! Elves rule the world"
Our Christmas edition of short, sharp and shiny praised the work of Santa's Elves, and why we should try to work more like them. "Santa may be the showman, but the elves do all the work. At clear decisions™ we consider ourselves "elf-like" and it's not just because we are short. We project manage, we look for improvements, we make change happen, we capture corporate knowledge and we know how to get the best out of any situation. All that we know we can trace back to elves..." please click here to read the whole article.
"does strategy matter?"
The first edition of 2012 was on the topic of Strategic Planning, and asked the question "Does Strategy Matter?". We have been told as business people that we need a strategy to know where we are heading. But why is it we don't always get strategy right. This article gives hints and tips for getting a strategy that would work for you. Please click here to read the article.
"what's your biggest career lesson?"
To coincide with International Women's Day celebrations around the globe, the Australian Institute of Project Management special interest group, Women in Project Management, hosted a lunch. A great group of Adelaide speakers spoke at the event and answered the question "What is your biggest career lesson that I learnt (and wished I had known)?". In the tenth edition of Short Sharp and Shiny staff at clear decisions™ also answered the question. To read the staff's lessons please click here
"Star Wars Has Taught Me well"
From a galaxy far, far away came the third edition for 2012. CP30 and Yoda assisted with answering the question "What is the best approach to problem solving?" Tips to help include: take time to think, develop your understanding and make it easy to understand. To read more to assist you when you are in a problem solving space please click here
"New Financial Year, New Beginnings"
EOFY aka end of financial year, is typically the domain of overworked accountants battling with receipts and businesses trying to push as much product as they can before they turn into a pumpkin on July 1st. This should be a time to rethink your plans. A time of introspection, a time to figure out is your business living up to it's potential? To read more please click here
"Clients - If You Treat Them Mean They Won't Be That Keen"
Clients are the lifeblood of your business, so I ask you this question: "Do you know what your customers are saying about you?... do you know the answer? Is it good, bad or just plain ugly? And how do you make sure it is always good? To read more about how to treat your customers, please click here
"The Art of Communicating is the language of success"
Talk, talk, talk... but to what end? Being an effective communicator is critical to success in work and life. I consider myself in the business of communicating (asking the right questions, understanding the answers, clarifying the points, making the complex simple) in order to get outcomes for my clients. To read the entire article please click here
"The Ballet of Life and Work"
Li Cunxin, aka Mao's Last Dancer, spoke at the recent Australian Institute of Project Management's National Conference. Li spoke about his journey through life and the valuable lessons we can all learn from his life. His life story inspired us to thinking how we can overcome adversity in both our professional and work life. To read our article on the life lessons please click here
"Lessons from the legend - clark griswald"
Christmas Eve. Some wrap presents or visit friends but for many it is a time to relax and watch that old classic National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. I thought that this Christmas I would use Clark Griswald's words of wisdom... So what can we learn from Clark? To read how Clark's wisdom can help us in our personal and professional lives please click here
"Skeletons in the Closet"
By now you are getting back into the swing of things after the glorious break. Your tan is fading, the turkey slumber has worn off and you are slowly getting back into work. You have great plans for this year but don't know where to start. You have done the three steps to goal setting, write them down, talk about them to others and recheck them. To read the article in its entirety please click here
"The Secrets to Winning premierships - strategic thinking"
When trying to improve your business it is always useful to look outside your specialist area and see what other professionals are doing. Why not look at what professional athletes are doing at the top of their game? Now this doesn't mean you should have professional masseuses in the copier room or give injections of mysterious substances to improve your employees' performance. But start to consider the strategy differently, let's use sports as an example of how strategic thinking can lead to success on and off the field. To read the article please click here
"easter bunny - my hero"
The Easter Bunny has got it made. He works for one day a year, gets to hide chocolate eggs for billions of children and is adored by everybody. What a great job! But I would like to ask the fluffy tailed bunny - What is the best part of your profession? Did you plan to be in the business you are in? What are your yearly goals? What are your values? Now we can't all grow a fluffy tail but all this talk of chocolates and the long weekend away from work started me thinking... To read the entire article please click here
"May the fourth be with you - lessons from george"
I am sure all you Star Wars fanatics are getting ready to play with your light sabers as May fourth approaches. Last year in this newsletter we looked at all the good things we learned from Star Wars. But before you practice your Chewbacca yell (everyone does it) or try to shove your pet dog into a Yoda costume let's take time to reflect on the man who started it all. Our man George Lucas. Visionary yes, genius sure, always right? Not even close. Like everybody he has made some mistakes in his business. Let's look at where this visionary lost his way and what we can learn from his mistakes... To read the article please click here
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