PM Minimalist Update: April 13, 2011

New Articles, Tools, & Resources from Michael Greer, The Project Management Minimalist

Issue Number 2: April 13, 2011   (Click here to Subscribe to these updates.)

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In this issue...

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 * March 22, 2011  * May 17, 2011   * June 21, 2011   * July 26, 2011    * August 12, 2011    * Sept. 14, 2011   * Oct. 25, 2011   * Nov. 29, 2011  

 * Dec. 31, 2011   * Jan 31, 2012     * Feb. 29, 2012    * March 30, 2012  * April 30, 2012    * May 31, 2012   * June/July, 2012   * Aug-Nov, 2012  * Dec '12-June 2013

What's New

PM Minimalist Adopted by Franklin University

I'm pleased to announce that Franklin University has adopted a customized, logo-branded version of The Project Management Minimalist, 2nd ed. for use in their new M.S. in Instructional Design & Performance Technology (IDPT). This unique master's program allows students to attend online or one-night-a-week classes and earn the degree in 24 months.Franklin University Graduates will be able to:

As some of you may know, I began my professional life as an instructional designer/performance technologist and spent many years managing teams of contractors as we developed performance-based training and job aids to support new products. A key value for people in this field is this: Provide "just enough" tools & training to enable success. In other words, these folks know the value of good, lean tools to support effective on-the-job performance. That's why I'm particularly proud that Franklin's team gave The Minimalist their "thumbs up" as a collection of tools for their PM Newbies! Thanks for the vote of confidence, Franklin!

(Note: This is the second university adoption for The Minimalist! The first was Laureate Education's licensing of the first edition for its Walden University.)


New Post Mortem Worksheet to Support PM Minimalist Quick Start

I just added a new Worksheet to the online PM Minimalist Quick Start Guide. The 3-page tool is titled: "Quick Start Post Mortem Worksheet: Audit, Adjust, & Keep It Simple!" You'll find it on pages 4 - 6 of the online Quick Start Guide. It's designed to guide your team through a quick Post Mortem debriefing after you use the 1-page "Minimalist Quick Start Checklist" to manage your first project. It includes blank spaces to capture team members' thoughts and suggested guidelines for conducting the Post Mortem. To download the 2nd edition Guide as a PDF, go to:


Tuesday, April 19 Free PDU for Lunch Webinar: "Just Enough PM to Rock Your Projects"

PDU for Lunch RegistrationI'm going to be appearing on Pam Stanton's live-video PDU for Lunch series on Tuesday, April 19 (12:30 pm Eastern, 9:30 am Pacific). Pam is a very cool lady known as The Project Whisperer. (Check out her website to learn more about Pam's people-first PM philosophy!)

Here's a link to the info and registration page: I'll be providing an overview of PM Minimalism, some practical advice on getting started as a PM Minimalist and answering questions from attendees. (See link above for details.) If you need PMP PDU credits, this webinar will provide you with one. Hope to see you there!



Thursday, April 28 The Project Management Minimalist's Guide: Just Enough PM to Rock Your Projects [Earn 1 PDU]

In this free live video session (11 am Pacific, 2 pm Eastern) I'll provide:

Join us and answer this cosmic question: "If you can plan and manage your project using only a one page checklist, then why would you make your PM more complicated?"

To register (and get your free eduFire account) go to:


A Minimalist Inspiration: Max Wideman's Comparative Glossary of PM Terms

Max Wideman's Comparative Glossary of PM Terms is a shining example of clean, single-purpose functionality. It's my "go to" reference for unraveling the ambiguity that comes from the use of seemingly simple PM terms in different contexts. For example: WBS stands for Work Breakdown Structure. That's easy enough, right? Yet, depending on your profession or industry, an appropriate WBS may be "product oriented" (a hierarchy of tangible deliverables), "task oriented" (a "family tree" of tasks) or some combination of these two. So which interpretation should you choose?

That's where Max's Glossary comes to the rescue. In the Glossary you'll find no less than 9 succinct entries defining WBS! And, better yet, each of these is cross-referenced (sourced) to specific professional organizations or standards documents. So you can choose the interpretation of the group you value most.

Now this may not sound like a big deal, but when you're working with project teams that include people from different industries and professional backgrounds the Glossary can be a big help! It can settle those arguments over terminology quickly and easily... while keeping everyone's egos intact. (I can't tell you how many times in my classes and consulting engagements I've settled that argument over WBS -- "Is it made up of tasks or work products??" -- by using Max's Glossary. Thanks, Max!)

In the website's Introduction to the Glossary Max provides this perspective (my bold added):

"... the vocabulary of project management is not only extensive but tends to consist of different 'dialects' according to the type of project and the technology involved... For example, this Glossary lists no less than thirty definitions of the word "Project". True, many of the definitions are similar, but the meanings are by no means identical... It is essential to establish a set of terms for each program or group of projects, especially where meanings are significantly different. Miscommunication represents a significant risk to project success. Hence the purpose of this Glossary -- to help you see what others think and to make the best selection for your particular project environment. As you will see, web technology allows us to provide links within the definitions quoted, to connect to terms defined elsewhere to facilitate your better understanding. This version 5.0 contains around 6,500 entries covering 4,250 discrete terms."

So don't waste time arguing over idiosyncratic interpretations of PM terms. Let Max's well-documented, in-context definitions settle the argument for you quickly & simply (Minimalist style!) Go to:


Reminders, Resources & Footnotes

PM Minimalist Support System & Freebies

The PM Minimalist Support System & Freebies page includes a chart summarizing links to multi-media collection of resources to help individual project managers, project teams and entire organizations go Minimalist. Check it out! (Note: I'll be adding to this grid as I make more support items available.)


Now Available: One Dozen Private & Customizable PM Webinars!

Private PM WebinarsSo you don't have time to stop working for several days and send everybody to PM training? Or maybe you don't have the money to spend on a full-blown, on-site workshop w/T&L expenses? See how you can take a Minimalist approach to your PM training through brief, one or two-hour customized webinars! [Click here to download the full 7-page PDF: The PM Minimalist Private Webinars: Buy Your Custom PM Training By the Hour!

The PM Minimalist Paperback Version Now Available at CreateSpace

Hard-copy (paperback) from CreateSpace

Would you prefer an old-fashioned, physical copy of The PM Minimalist you can hold in your hands? Then check out this 122-page paperback version.

And (because you're special!) I'll give you a HUGE INTRODUCTORY DISCOUNT on your purchase price. Just email me at:

I'll send you a special discount code good for a nice, fat price reduction! (I promise!)

NOTE: Of course,the Kindle, NOOK, & PDF versions are still available.

Go to for info.


8-min. Video Overview of The Project Management Minimalist

Check out this brief 8-minute video overview of The... Minimalist, describing how it supports project managers, project teams, and the entire organization.

If you already own the book, you might benefit from the brief introduction to all the good stuff you'll find inside. And it's also great way to introduce the book to friends and colleagues. (And as long as you're at my YouTube Channel, look for the other PM Minimalist support videos that can help you get the most of The ... Minimalist.)



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