Navigating Life's Passages Using Project Management

PMI Northern Nevada Chapter

I recently took a class to learn how to navigate the Inside Passage to Alaska. The class was held on a 65-foot rebuilt wooden 1929 boat called the David B with the original Diesel engine. This adventure originated because a colleague wanted me to help sail a 32-foot sailboat from Washington to Alaska to use for our corporate retreats. I realized doing this might require some unique skills, so I sought out a class to get a handle on what would be involved in this pursuit.

The goal of the class was to get the David B 740 miles from Bellingham, Washington to Ketchikan, Alaska in 12 days. The speed the boat traveled was dependent on the capabilities that day of all the systems on the boat, the strength of the crew to be at sea, the wind, the tides, the currents of the various channels and passages, and any obstacles/distractions encountered en route.

As with any project, the more experience the people on the project team had--and the quality of their tools--the more likely it was we would achieve our goal. And this was no different for the Inside Passage journey on the David B. What I realized in this class: For me to take a boat on the Inside Passage, I would need to assemble a crew with the skills and the experience to do so. While basic navigation skills for cruising the Inside Passage are required, they are just one of the skills required.

The projects that take …

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"Forgive your enemies, but never forget their names."

- John F. Kennedy