PMI Global Insights

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The Project Management Institute's annual events attract some of the most renowned and esteemed experts in the industry. In this blog, Global Conference, EMEA Congress and experienced event presenters past, present and future from the entire PMI event family share their knowledge on a wide range of issues important to project managers.

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Viewing Posts by Sarah Mersereau

Day 2: Gathering Your Feedback

Categories: PMIEMEA17

Over the past two days, we've had the rare opportunity to learn from the experiences of some talented presenters. I thought I'd spend a little time today to hear how attendees were feeling about it all. From the food to the content, you were happy to share!
Below are just a few snippets from today. Hopefully I'll connect with you tomorrow!

Ciao-ciao,

Sarah 

Can you tell me about one of the sessions you really enjoyed today?

[re: A Guide to PMBOK 6th Edition, #209]

"I found the session on PMBOK 6th edition really interesting. The new structure with a focus on innovation was really good and this is something I can apply in my company for my colleagues who want to get PMP certified." - Leonardo, Healthcare, Italy ​

[re: Creating a Circle of Safety for Your Project Team, #216]

"I’m a program manager and I work with lots of project managers all over the world. And with some of them you’re really going, ‘how do I really get them to engage and how do I get them to want to do this work?’ [This session] was all about putting yourself in their shoes and thinking about treating them how you’d like to be treated and it was really refreshing to think about it.
And they had music – there was background music during the session and it was lovely, really nice music.
It was really interesting, they kind of had some cool statistics, like, they asked us, “who was the person who invented the iPhone?” and, of course, you answer, “Steve Jobs”, I think everybody knows that, and he was the CEO of Apple way back in the day.
But then they said, “does anybody know the current CEO of Starbucks?”, or Southwestern Airlines, or all these companies, like Nestlé, and everyone went, “no”. Because their model of leadership in all these companies is the Servant Leader, so the CEO is not someone who is put into the limelight. I liked it!" - Catherine, FinTech, Ireland

 

What has been the best part of this Congress for you, so far?

"The food is really good. The venue is really amazing, people are really friendly. When you ask for support, you get support, so I think it very well organized." - Nicole, ChemTech, Sweden ​

"It’s very well organized. The breaks and the sessions are timed just right. It’s enough time to take it in, but not enough time to lose focus and the breaks are staggered nicely and the food is lovely! We’re also running on time, which I wasn’t expecting, but I’m pleased to see." - Catherine, FinTech, Ireland

Posted by Sarah Mersereau on: May 02, 2017 06:25 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)

First Timers into Friends: Enjoying Day 1

Categories: PMIEMEA17

One of the greatest pleasures of attending a congress is meeting new people and meeting people from all over the world. However, being a first-time attendee, and showing up alone can be tremendously intimidating.

What I saw today, on our first day of #pmiemea17, was the beginning of the evolution of a group of strangers into a band of friends.

What started out as someone remarking keynote speaker Gabor George Burt’s fancy socks turned into the #fancysockschallenge and had this first-timer wandering up to complete strangers asking if I could photograph their socks! Talk about an ice-breaker! I can’t wait to see where our antics will lead us tomorrow!

If it’s your first time, you’re here by yourself, and maybe fancy socks aren’t your style (haha – sorry I couldn’t resist), here are a few more tips to help get the ball rolling for you, too:

  • Look for other first-timers and people attending alone

You’ll notice our #pmiemea17 first-timers by the bright green ribbon they can choose to attach to their conference badges – go up and say ‘ciao!’, introduce yourself and ask about what conference session they’ve enjoyed the most so far.
Often, people who aren’t with people will be lurking in corners, or playing with their phones. You know, all of the same things you do when you feel awkward. Say ‘buongiorno!’ to them, too (ok, I am running out of Italian). A stranger’s just a friend you haven’t met and nobody likes to be alone in a crowd.

  • Use open-ended questions and have common answers at hand

You know the questions to avoid: anything that can be answered in a simple yes/no. This sounds easy, but I think when we’re stressed, or working in a second language, it bears remembering.
I also find having answers to questions like ‘What’s the wifi password?’ ‘Where’s the bathroom?’ ‘Is there a tour of downtown being offered today?’ can make welcome additions to many conversations! (pro tip: read through the FAQs on the conference app)

  • Immerse yourself in the content

This is actually a rare opportunity for you to be uninhibited by an entourage. You can be unapologetic about getting excited about a statistical presentation, asking the speaker a million questions afterwards, challenging an idea during the Q&A session, or becoming a complete fan-person during a book signing. Nobody’s going to pull you away because they want coffee or they just saw someone else they know. This time is all about YOU and expanding YOUR knowledge.

  • You’re not really alone

Each of us on the Community Engagement Team would love to see you! The speakers are eager to hear your feedback, chat about their topics, and share their experience.
During lunch, we are mixing up the networking opportunities.
Today, it was by region: I couldn’t find Canada, but Laura and I sat with Northern Europe (similar climate? well, similar hemisphere …) and had a lovely time meeting Brigitte, Catherine, and Nicole. We had such a nice time that we forgot to take photos!
Tomorrow, we’ll be learning to communicate in Italian without talking, which sounds like it will be hilarious.
On Wednesday, the tables are arranged by industry, so we’ll have a chance to see how much ‘Italian communication’ we remember from the day before.

 

The slide decks from each presentation shown at #pmiemea17 will be available for download in PDF format on the My Congress page of the EMEA Congress webpage until November 2017.

So relax, ask questions, share your experiences, and enjoy yourself!

Ciao-ciao!

Posted by Sarah Mersereau on: May 01, 2017 08:07 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)

Sarah #PMIEMEA17

Categories: PMIEMEA17

As with Yves, below is my schedule for Congress in Rome. Please connect with me, either here, or via twitter (@sarahtweeters) with your questions to speakers and I'll do my best to get you answers! #PMIEMEA17

MONDAY MAY 1

09:00 - 10:30    Keynote Speaker Gabor George Burt
11:00 - 12:00    PMI Salon: Turbulence and Uncertainty: How Organizations Are Addressing Global Challenges    Speaker: Murat Bicek
13:30 - 14:45    A Project Manager's Guide to Strategic Thinking and Business Value      Speaker: Frank Saladis
15:15 - 16:30    The Art and Science of Project Communication Across the Globe     Speaker: Muhammad A.B. Ilyas

TUESDAY MAY 2

09:00 - 10:15   Lessons Learned: Creating a New Decision-Making Framework   Speaker: Maria Hedwall
10:45 - 12:00    Optimizing Your Environment: Strategies to Achieve More Wherever You Work    Speaker: Randall Englund
13:30 - 14:45    The Seven Pains that Keep Organisations Awake at Night    Speaker: Saadi Adra
15:15 - 16:30    Billion Dollar Agile: Applying Scrum Values and Principles Across Industries    Speaker: Simon Orrell

WEDNESDAY MAY 3

08:30 - 09:45    Don't Let Biases Doom Your Project: Strategies for Identifying and Transforming Cognitive Biases    Speaker: Luis Seabra Coelho
10:15 - 11:30    We Need to Talk: Feedback That Doesn't Have to Hurt    Speaker: Phil Bristol
12:30 - 13:45    Cultural Implications to PMO Implementations    Speaker: Frank Parth
14:00 -15:30    Closing Keynote: Magnus Lindkvist

Posted by Sarah Mersereau on: April 30, 2017 05:13 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)
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