After almost 30 years in project management, I have learned a lot! To be honest, the majority of my learning has come through my mistakes and failures. I have spent the last ten years sharing my project management experience and lessons learned in my classes and through my speaking engagements. With the release of my new book, Kick Ass Project Manager, I truthfully disclose my journey and those nine aspects that I have learned can take you from a good project manager to a kick ass project manager. Today, I am giving you an introduction to the first aspect: Know Yourself.

You know what they say, the first step is admitting that you have a problem. There are a huge number of self-help, management, and leadership books on the market that are full of great ideas and concepts. However, before you can dive into any of those ideas, you have to know where you are starting from. How can you know how to improve if you do not know what needs improving?

In teaching Project Management Professional (PMP) class, one topic that causes confusion is the difference and sequencing of quality assurance (QA) versus quality control (QC). QA is concerned with quality improvement and the processes whereas QC is concerned with the quality of the products. Because QA is “quality improvement”, you must first have your QC measurements to know what needs to be improved. Trying to jump into QA (improvement) without QC (measurement) would be an exercise in futility.

The same goes for self-development. To truly improve, you have to have an honest assessment of where you are currently in order to know where you need to go. As such, this is where I start my book!

You may think you know what your strengths and weaknesses are but these are limited to your self-perception and assessment. Accuracy in a baseline assessment comes from open and honest feedback from those around you. I suggest two tools: the first is a 360-degree survey that specifically inquires about your project management and leadership skills. The second tool is one of my favorites: Stop – Start – Continue. Used with your team, it will give you three things they want you to stop doing, three things they want you to start doing, and three things they want you to continue doing. You may be surprised by the feedback!

Once you know yourself, not only from your own perspective, but more importantly, from everyone else’s perspective, then you can truly have clarity on where you need to grow and change!

Interested in purchasing my book? It is now available on Amazon: Kick Ass Project Manager

Belinda has a gift for taking difficult concepts and making them easy to understand.  Her book, Kick Ass Project Manager is a must read for project managers, new to the field, as well as those who’ve been managing goal-driven multi-million dollar projects for years.  Her approach to creating and developing a real-world  project management methodology with a focus on delivering executables on time and on budget, is very timely, as so many projects today fall victim to poorly written requirements or scope creep.  It’s rare to find a project management book with so many real-world implementations, yet is so easy to read.  Well done! – Kelly Handerhan, PMP, President of Cybertrain.IT