PM Minimalist Update: May 17, 2011

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

Issue Number 3: May 17, 2011 ... Click here to Subscribe to these Updates & Get a Free Gift!
(Feel free to forward this to anyone!)

In this issue...

See Other Issues

 * March 22, 2011   * April 13, 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

Best Practices for Minimizing Project Scope Creep

Recently posed this question: "What are the best ways to manage scope creep in a project?" In response, several of its expert community (including me!) provided their best advice. When all the answers were in, the website's editors decided to create a special, stand-alone Guide.

Link to PDF: Best Practices for Managing Scope CreepHere's their Executive Summary of the Guide:  "Planning, executing and completing a project successfully — and on time — is the end goal for a project manager. But nothing throws a wrench into the works like scope creep, causing focus to shift, deadlines to be missed and a project to drag on and get bogged down. In this guide, Focus Experts Andrew Baker and Michael Greer share their top 8 best practices for minimizing scope creep."

If you'd like a free PDF of this Guide, click the graphic or go to this URL:


Live Video Chat Now Available at My Website

I've just set up a chat room at my website where we can talk live, one-on-one (or one on two, since it will handle 3-way live video conversations). All you need is a web cam, a microphone, and a browser connected to the 'net. Live Video ChatNo other software is needed.

If you would like to meet me in a live video chat room for a free, private, one-on-one discussion, just email me at I’ll send you a password and arrange a time. After you have the password, simply click the link below & follow the instructions.

Click here to go to the PM Minimalist Live Video Chat Room


Recording Available -- PDU for Lunch Webinar: "Just Enough PM to Rock Your Projects"

PDU for Lunch RegistrationAs you may recall, last month I appeared on Pam Stanton’s live-video PDU for Lunch series. It was a fun session! If you missed it, you can view the recorded video here --

The session provided an overview of PM Minimalism, some practical advice on getting started as a PM Minimalist and answered questions from attendees.  And if you need PMP PDU credits, watching this recorded webinar will provide you with one. Enjoy!


Coming Thursday, May 26 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:


Blog Posts You Might Have Missed

Since last month's Update, I've posted these new articles on my blog:


Two of My Favorite Minimalist Computer Tools: Dropbox & Workrave

I love simple, focused computer tools! This month I'd like to share a couple of Minimalist tools that are always running on my computer. And they are so simple to use that I often forget they are there.

Dropbox: Effortless Backup to the Cloud... for Free

Dropbox: Backup to the Cloud!Everyone knows we're supposed to be backing up our computers regularly. The problem is remembering to do so and then taking the time to actually do it! The great thing about Dropbox is that it's all automatic. After you set it up (takes 20 minutes, tops!) Dropbox will simply do its job without your having to think about it.

Here's how it works. Go to the Dropbox website and get your free (up to 2 GB) Dropbox account, then place your Dropbox master folder on your desktop. Next, put your top-priority folders & documents in the Dropbox master folder. Now you can go ahead and edit them or use them as needed from the Dropbox folder on your desktop. The next time you're online, your Dropbox desktop folder will automatically be synchronized to your Dropbox account "in the cloud."  After your first big upload, any changes you make to folders or files in your computer's Dropbox folder will be automatically updated in your cloud Dropbox. You don't need to do anything. It's all automatic. Better yet, when you need to work with your Dropbox files and you're not at your computer, you simply log on to your online account and download them to whatever device your using. It's brilliantly simply, tranparent backup to the cloud... a true Minimalist tool!

Workrave: Gets You Up & Keeps Your Blood Circulating!

I don't know about you, but I find it's really easy to zone out and lose track of time when I'm at my computer. After a couple hours of writing I can almost forget that I have a physical body -- until it's too late! By then my feet have fallen asleep or my shoulders or knees are aching or I've managed to get a good start on a stiff neck.

Workrave "take a break" softwareBut no more! While working with a physical therapist to figure out how to deal with some back/leg pain issues, I was warned that I had to somehow force myself to take frequent stretch breaks. Knowing that I couldn't do this on my own (after all, I was lost in my writing!), I decided I needed outside intervention. Enter Workrave.

This simple, free utility works automatically to remind me to get up and step away from the computer for a minute or so to get my blood flowing again.  According to its developers, "Workrave is a program that assists in the recovery and prevention of Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI). The program frequently alerts you to take micro-pauses, rest breaks and restricts you to your daily limit."

You decide how you want Workrave to behave... how often it should rouse you, the duration of your breaks, whether you want to be shown some suggested stretches for your breaks, etc. After spending a few minutes setting it up, it will always be there working in the background to remind you to take that break. It's highly customizable and really easy to use. And it's another brilliantly simple Minimalist tool that I use all the time! (Whoops... Gotta take a break now!)


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

Prefer an old-fashioned, physical copy of the book 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.)



Why You Received This Update

You're getting this Update because:

Now don't worry! It's easy to unsubscribe if you don't want to get any more of these Updates. (Click here to unsubscribe, or simply email me and say, "Hey, take me off that Update list!")

My Promises to You

Here are my promises to you about these Updates:

Contact & Follow

Here are some ways you can connect with me and track the evolution of Project Management Minimalism:

Quicky Sales Pitch: How about a customized, two-day, on-site PM Minimalist workshop? We'll give your folks plenty of practical, hands-on challenges so they can learn to apply PM Minimalism and we'll spend time unsnarling some of your unique (and thorny) PM issues! Click here to download a PDF class outline.



(And remember: It's easy to unsubscribe if you don't want to get any more of these Updates . (Click here to unsubscribe, or simply email me and say, "Hey, take me off that Update list!")