The Healthy Project Manager

Matching up wellness coaching and motivational interviewing techniques with project management—along with inclusion and inspiration—is my goal.

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All about PMI Global Conference 2019

October's PMI Global Conference - Who can you meet with?

My short poem for YOU!


Cheap and easy ways to reduce your stress

All about PMI Global Conference 2019

I've never had the privilege of attending a PMI Global Conference before - I'm not sure I knew what to expect.....but, it has been such a valuable experience for me.'s not over yet!  Today was just Day 2 of 3, but let me share what I've experienced so far:  Day 1 was impressive - with signage in the airport to greet me - electronic billboards on the street proclaiming the conference and a sea of professionals walking into the convention center wearing orange lanyards proudly displaying their PMI affiliation.  I was part of an army.  The exhibit hall had many interesting vendors and displays, the PMI booth offered anyone the chance to "Ask the Expert" and the new PMI logo was colorfully and imaginatively splashed all over the place.  There were so many activities I had a hard time choosing which one to attend - from the Opening General Session and Keynote Speaker Adam Grant (a great way to kick off the event) to the networking reception it was all was engaging, inspiring and  informative.  Networking with so many people I interact with on this site has been such a highlight for me. I met so many really exceptional professionals.  I won't lie, after Day 1 I went to bed very tired - but when the alarm rang in the morning I was ready to jump up and greet Day 2.  Day 2 was just as rewarding as the previous day with more excellent presenters offering a variety of topics and more meaningful interactions with respected colleagues.  There are so many opportunities to meet new people, share experiences and learn!  This conference has been exactly what I needed - I am more excited than ever before to be a Project Management Professional.  Tomorrow I'll share more about Day 3.  Please consider attending events like this - I believe you will come away feeling as renewed and inspired as I feel today.  Coming here to Philadelphia has been such a privilege for me!  It is definitely worth it!

Posted on: October 06, 2019 10:23 PM | Permalink | Comments (8)

October's PMI Global Conference - Who can you meet with?

Categories: Career, Leadership, Leadership

During October's PMI Global Conference in Philadelphia, there is an opportunity to meet with several PM's designated as Ask the Experts.  This means you can schedule a 20-30 minute session to discuss anything Project Management!  There are 6 experts this year who you can sign up to talk with.  I've listed their names and some of their exceptional skillsets:

  • Dave Maynard - Engineering (avionics and glass), worked for NASA (!), technical design, leads teams in turning around troubled projects.  This guy is incredible.  Dave also was a significant contributor to the PMBOK guide version 6.  He knows stuff.

  • Lorelie Kaid - Experienced in strategic planning, organizational change and leadership, agile, PMO leadership, process mapping & improvement - she has mad skills!  Lorelie is an excellent communicator – you’ll be glad you spent time talking with her.

  • Andrew Craig - This guy is a genuine leader - he is an expert on this site and a key contributor.  Andrew has a consultant background in financial services, Scrum-certified along with many other technical certifications.  Andrew has often been an inspiration on this site for me personally and I know he will be for you too!

  • Dave Davis - Also has many certifications, is an influencer on this site and a leading speaker on all 3 parts of the PMI talent triangle!  You'll be grateful you scheduled time to meet with Dave.  Wow, he is really an expert!

  • Kiron Bondale - Kiron is an exceptional voice on this site and is a trainer, coach, advisor and speaker on all things project management.  Having 20-30 minutes to sit with Kiron is an opportunity you won't want to miss – he is a strong influencer on this site and really knows his stuff!

  • Lori Wilson - I have over 27 years of leadership experience in healthcare/IT and a unique background in health and wellness.  I will be speaking at Denver’s PMO Symposium 2019 on Workplace Bullying.  If you are interested in any of these topics, it would be a genuine honor to meet you.

Please consider making an appointment with one or more of us at this Global Conference.  We are anxious to meet with YOU!   



Posted on: September 26, 2019 12:04 PM | Permalink | Comments (7)

My short poem for YOU!

Categories: Leadership, Leadership

I am so honored to be an ASK THE EXPERT at the PMI Global Conference in Philadelphia October 5-7 that it inspired me to write this little poem for you:

Roses are red, violets are blue

While you attend the PMI Global Conference

Please sign up for a 20-minute “Ask the Expert” chat with me

So I can finally in person meet YOU!


We can talk about IT, leadership, health care or maybe strategize your career path

Let’s talk about anything you are facing in project management,

I’m good on most PM subjects, but honestly a little weaker at math!


Let’s get together – and start our friendship here

I’m excited to visit with you, to learn more from others too

It will be a celebration of PM’s – we all deserve this collective CHEER!


Don’t leave me hanging – please sign up for a chat

It will be a fun opportunity – I promise you that!

Please follow this link to sign up today:  (scroll down to Ask the Expert)...   


Posted on: September 26, 2019 11:29 AM | Permalink | Comments (7)


It's September in North America, and I can feel a change coming as I step into autumn.  Families are stepping back into a routine.  Kids are returning to school, the daylight hours are shorter with a crisp feel to the air in the morning and evening.  Summer vacations are only a reflection now in happy photos and cherished memories.  Is there a project management correlation here?  I think so…..after contemplating the changing seasons, some simple suggestions and thoughts bubbled up for this time of year:

  1. Ways to be in routine while avoiding being in a rut.  Think about this for all sorts of tasks – but here I am specifically addressing meetings.  There are so many articles about deathly dull meetings and time wasted at work.  Here are some ideas to keep meetings lively:
    1. Team trivia – While some attendees are on the line for the Webex but not everyone has joined yet, ask questions like what is a recent movie you have watched / what are your hobbies / what is your favorite dessert / what was your first job / are you a cat person or a dog person / where were you born?  This is a great way to create comradery and learn more about the people we work with without taking any extra time and has offered so many benefits.  I found out someone spoke a 2nd language – which was a language I needed interpretation on another project.  Another time I found out someone was an artist, and we were able to tap into that skillset!
    2. Standing meetings or huddles – Short, sweet and to the point.  Better yet, make sure the meeting is really needed – can the information be obtained or shared in any other way?  Cancel meetings or avoid meetings wherever possible, keeps the teams on their toes!
    3. Walking meetings – This even works for virtual teams.  When appropriate, ask everyone to walk during the time.  Doing this enhances brainstorming sessions or works when considering solutions for an issue – walking (especially outdoors) can invigorate creativity and might help your team find a solution! 
    4. Show your screen and keep attendees engaged – Type your notes in front of everyone – hover over items – highlight items – keep them engaged in the conversation visually.  Yep, sometimes you’ll make a typo – but this really helps everyone stay focused.
    5. Right attendees - No more extras sitting in the room who don’t need to be there, instead make sure to have revolving attendees as needs change and tasks are completed.  Great way to stay out of a rut!
  1. Keep work fresh and interesting
    1. Start your day with a purpose – Exercise, meditation, prayer, healthy breakfast, joy and gratitude…..whatever works for YOU…..find a reason and be in touch with the blessings of the day and how you can help others.  If I am alert and fresh, it might help energize my work as well.
    2. “Great Mondays” – To avoid dread or monotony, find ways to start and end your week on a high note.  Maybe start with a favorite coffee with a favorite friend…. and end with sending notes of thanks to others who stepped up during the week.
    3. ALWAYS Learn – keep growing and learning about things that can enhance your role, your resume and your skills.
    4. Reach out to others – Ask others about their jobs and what they do to remain engaged and interested.  Inquire what they love about their work. 
    5. Listen more – In meetings, in conversations, especially to others with different perspectives.  Be curious and try to look at life from the other person’s perspective.
  1. How to remain professionally relevant and growing
    1. Be a ground hog – poke your head up and look around at what other admirable PM’s are doing.  How are they contributing?  Ask if they have a mentor or if they will mentor you!
    2. Now do something – Work toward another degree or certification, volunteer in your community and online, complete PDU’s, register for seminars and webinars – or, better yet…..offer to give a presentation yourself!  Research new technologies and industries and move forward – be a leader.  Embrace change.
    3. Talk to people of all ages – A great way to remain relevant is to speak with younger people and strive to learn from mature professionals.  Talk with everyone, listen to their stories and ask what they study or read these days.  Ask how they remain relevant.

I’m anxious to hear YOUR story – how do you avoid a rut, keep work fresh & interesting and remain professionally relevant and growing at the same time? 

Posted on: September 04, 2019 03:05 PM | Permalink | Comments (7)

Cheap and easy ways to reduce your stress

I know someone will say they don’t feel or accept stress, but for some of us (even if we love our jobs) being a project manager can be stressful.  As PM’s we are responsible for project success and team spirit, we are constantly checking the horizon for risks, are juggling stakeholder management and much more.  Daily we are bombarded by e-mails, voicemails, texts, calls, the person stepping in asking for an unscheduled and urgent report, a new risk, virtual team complications and you know what I’m talking about.  Sometimes we do what I refer to as……”tap dancing as fast and as hard as I can on a moving floor”! 

For balance, these are 10 simple and cost effective ways I manage stress.  Consider trying one or more:

  1. Incorporate extra steps into your day:  I do this by taking at least one walk around the block during business hours.  I work on a hospital campus, and purposely use the restroom in another building which forces me to step away from desk to walk for a few minutes each day.  I avoid the elevator and take the stairs when possible.  If appropriate, I walk to a co-workers office or desk to talk vs. creating another e-mail.
  2. Take mini vacations:  This means I have pictures of my grandkids around me to make me smile and bring me a sense of calm when I gaze at them.  It is only a second or two, but having a photo that recalls a pleasant memory or inspires in some way sparks joy and reduces stress.
  3. Thanks:  Spend a minute or two saying thank you every day by penning an e-mail or handwritten note to someone deserving of genuine appreciation.  This has many benefits and I’ve realized writing these notes, there is a physical smile on my face washing away stress.
  4. Stop and breathe.  Try this one:  Breathe in for the count of 6, hold your breath for the count of 6, then exhale for the count of 6.  I use this technique-right before an important outbound call, the start of a meeting or when switching between projects and find it very helpful.
  5. Alive and Green:  Studies indicate indoor plants can reduce your stress and improve productivity!  Simple and easy with most plants only needing a little water once a week.  You can find a small plant for very little cost.  Some examples are ivy, an African Violet or even a bamboo plant.  They improve the quality of the air around you and can offer you a measure of peace.  I enjoy Gerber Daisies in my office.
  6. Snacks:  Nutritional snacks can help you keep a sustained energy level.  I try avoiding caffeine as much as possible because it can lower your mood and energy once the initial boost ends.  Don’t get me wrong, there are days when I love everything about a good cup of coffee – but I’ve realized too much caffeine is not helpful.  Some snacks I enjoy are trail mix, banana chips, string cheese or huckleberry licorice.  My choices might not be yours, but make sure you have enough water and snacks available in case you need a lift. 
  7. Ha-Ha-Ha:  Find ways to laugh.  You know that funny coworker – go hang out with them by the water cooler and laugh.  My daughter sends me funny sayings she finds on Pinterest every day.  It takes just a moment to read them for a good giggle, but this not only helps me relax but often I can share the funny with others to brighten their day too.  Sometimes I share one or two at the beginning a meeting, it just brings a lightness to the moment and calms others.  Laughter is like medicine.
  8. Call Me:  Phone a friend or have lunch with your friend in person.  You know, your soulmate kind of friend.  My best friend of 27 years lives far away, but we schedule a lunch call twice a month.  We eat our lunch and connect heart to heart – different than the other days when we communicate via text.  During these calls, a sign is posted on my door reading “If you hear laughing or even crying – everything is OK.  I’m on the phone from 12-1 with my best friend”.  Several of my coworkers saw the sign and decided to try it with their friends – we all agree it reduces stress!
  9. Melody:  Music is another stress reliever.  Studies indicate music improves your mood and even reduces stress.  Music is often used for therapy.  Now music is so easy readily available – I use my cell phone with earbuds and if no one minds I use the computer speakers making this pretty simple to incorporate into the business day.  I listen to my favorite songs near the end of my day to help me transition from work to my family at home.
  10. Quote of the day:  Find inspirational words from someone you respect and admire.  This could be spiritual, a note from your child, an online quote or a passage from a book.  Find something worth reflecting upon and read it before starting your day – maybe post it nearby your desk for a stress reliever. 

I’m hoping one or more of these things will be something you can try.  If you have other cost-effective stress reducers, please consider posting them below.  I can’t be the only PM with a stressful workload!

Posted on: August 05, 2019 06:03 PM | Permalink | Comments (12)

"I'll do the stupid thing first and then you shy people follow..."

- Frank Zappa



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