Category: Book


BOOK LAUNCH – “Managing Smaller and Medium-Sized Projects”

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Authors launching their books sometimes find themselves at a bookstore or other venue surrounded by empty seats except perhaps for their loyal family members, a solo ardent fan, random stragglers, and bored staff. Fortunately, my frugal, hooplaless and haka-free book launch collared a few curious people. Here’s me with colleagues and friends from our MBA days (some 30 years ago) including in the foreground Mark and Murray – successful entrepreneurs and clearly extremely intelligent and very discerning readers!

Free Sample

Click here for the FREE first chapter of this 204 page book. If you want a hard copy of the entire book please contact me by email jim_young@xtra.co.nz. The book will cost you NZ$38, which sum includes GST and free delivery within NZ.

The book is easy-to-read and is written in a friendly, … Read More »


Free Book

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That’s right – after three years of steady sales, Whitcoulls Ltd, New Zealand book-sellers, tell me that local demand for my “Managing Murphy” textbook is flagging. Bugger, no more orders. I’ll have to postpone retirement, write another book or even get a real job. But rather than face the ignominy of a fire sale, I thought that you, my blog readers, would appreciate a free copy of this book while its content remains current. Yeah – today’s technical books, unlike history books, have a diminishing half-life as new ideas flourish exponentially. Actually, that’s not entirely true – history too is frequently rewritten.

This free book comprehensively explores the subject of contemporary project risk management.  There’s more here than most people would ever wish to know, but it might look good on your desk when the boss or risk-averse … Read More »


Managing Project Risk

Risk management is one of today’s hottest topics. Most industries are now highly competitive and the project management mantra is faster, cheaper, better. With these pressures comes risk.

Good risk management or poor risk management can mean the difference between project success and project failure. Good risk management allows us to respond proactively to risk and also allows us to react better to those risks that do occur – issues.

Experience has shown that risk management must be of critical concern to all project managers, as unmanaged or unmitigated risks are a primary cause of project failure. Unfortunately, many managers and project managers believe risk management to be too difficult, too time consuming, or even too complicated to perform. However, such concerns are unfounded and there is no doubt that successful risk management will greatly add to the probability of project success.

The … Read More »


Book-in-progress: Project Stakeholder Management

1st April

I’m writing a new book on stakeholder management. To the uninitiated, given the current popularity of vampire movies, this expression might seem like something out of Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” (1897) when the undead Count was converted to truly dead by medium of a stake driven through his heart.

Such a tricky manoeuvre would presumably require some skilled management by the stakeholder. Yet, surprisingly perhaps, this is not what stakeholder management is all about, in the project management discipline anyway. Since this writing project will be quality-driven, I can’t speculate on the publication date, but I anticipate it will be some sort of an elaboration of the following diagram, although people have reservations about the expression ‘stakeholder management.’ In particular, ‘management’ insinuates that stakeholders need to be controlled, since left to their own devices they could upset the project. Perhaps an expression … Read More »



Book-in-progress: Princess

Another writing project still in the conception phase is “PRINCESS.” This book will explore the human side of project management and will be an unofficial Kiwi companion for the somewhat brutal and overwhelming UK process-heavy PRINCE2 methodology currently favoured by our central government. PRINCESS will explore the softer yet vital topics of leadership, communication, team-building, negotiation, motivation, delegation, feedback (giving and getting) and performance management, personal productivity and time management, managing meetings, presentation skills, networking, interviewing, coaching, mentoring, dealing with stress (yours and other’s), conflict management and so on, all of which PRINCE2 publications neglect. I think we know that once the technical processes of PRINCE2 have been mastered, it’s always the people what makes the difference.

Of these many capabilities, I’m sure we would list “leadership” first, which in the project situation means removing obstacles to the team’s excellent performance. This … Read More »



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My latest thoughts on Project Management and life.

BOOK LAUNCH – “Managing Smaller and Medium-Sized Projects”

Authors launching their books sometimes find themselves at a bookstore or other venue surrounded by empty seats except perhaps for their loyal family members,...

Project Durations and Contingencies

Predicting project completion times is one of the challenges of Project Managers. Project schedule overruns are quite common due to uncertainty in estimating task durations,...

Project Cost Estimating

Estimation is notoriously difficult. Projects by definition are unique ventures. We do not have the luxury of “having done it before” enjoyed by our...