Superheroes, Emotions and Project Management

Ashutosh has more than 11 years of global IT delivery experience on development, enhancement, production support and testing projects.

I am an avid comic book collector. Every now and then, I come across a story that relates to project management—like the “War of Lights,” a DC Comics storyline I followed (and was a big hit) in some 2008-09 issues of Green Lantern. Let me take you on a journey that hopefully helps us all understand some “do’s and don’ts” for the emotional health of successful PMs.

Emotions are the basis of what makes humans, well, human. The ability to celebrate, cry, feel pain or sorrow—all of these emotions make up a person and the kind of leader (or team member) he or she is destined to become. An emotion can drive a project, but will it drive up to the stars or down to the ground? The less in control we are of our emotions, the more instability we can bring to the project environment (negative); the more in control we are of them, the more collaborative we can be with the team (positive).

Consider the seven-color rainbow as a spectrum that highlights aspects of human emotions. Our emotional spectrum is made up of: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet. Let’s look at the spectrum colors—along with their appropriate characters in the DC Comics universe and how they relate to project management!

Red (Rage – The Angry One)
DC Comics Character: Atrocitus

Atrocitus is the angry Red Lantern and leader of …

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"Too many pieces of music finish too long after the end."

- Igor Stravinsky