According to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), trends for HR professionals will include the “employee experience” and a resurgence in social media. Social media, these days, is almost a no-brainer, but its importance cannot be emphasized enough. As for employee experience… Continue reading Human Resources Management Trends
Dealing with stakeholders, especially difficult ones, can be among a project manager’s more frustrating responsibilities. According to the Project Management Institute (PMI) 2013 PMBOK, a project stakeholder is “an individual, group, or organization, who may affect, be affected by, or perceive itself to be affected by a decision, activity, or outcome of a project.”
Most project managers depend on the old model of “managing stakeholders,” which entails keeping project stakeholders informed, updated, and monitored to ensure steady, efficient progress. As you can imagine, communication is key. So is consistent engagement:
Stakeholder management needs to focus more on engagement in order to move projects from installation to implementation. …Projects should start with the premise that identifying a range of stakeholders and engaging with them in a consistent and organized manner will improve project success. (Engaging Stakeholders for Project Success, pmi.org 2015)
In her insightful article How to Train Your Sponsor, Laura Barnard, PMP (PMOstrategies.com) indicates that “the number one factor in determining success or failure of your change initiative is…sponsor engagement.” Barnard goes beyond communication and trust to provide several ways that sponsors—who can be considered stakeholders themselves—can be motivated and engaged to become an effective part of project management.
But what about the difficult stakeholders?
Effective project management requires learning how to move beyond the traditional approach of “managing stakeholders” to a more modern approach: making stakeholders your partners. Partnership creates a sense of ownership that allows intuitive buy-in from all stakeholders on the project. Successful partnerships also mitigate risk.
There is a strong correlation between stakeholder management and risk management. Without the buy-in and full commitment from stakeholders, projects, regardless of their success factors, are at high risk for failure. (7 tips to transform difficult stakeholders into project partners, by Moira Alexander, via CIO.com)
The Educational Alliance of NOVA Workforce Development Division and PMIWDC are presenting a Project Management Training Seminar for project managers and PMPs to discover a new approach of making stakeholders your partners.
- Examine recommendations in the PMBOK Guide for providing foundational structures and processes that can save you and your organization time and money.
- Introduce negotiating and conflict management techniques that have proven track records.
- Provide tips for dealing with difficult stakeholders and situations.
This workshop is presented by Ron Taylor, an internationally-known leader, lecturer, author, and consultant, as well as the principal and founder of the Ron Taylor Group. He is a past President of the Washington D.C. Chapter of the Project Management Institute (PMIWDC.org), the largest PMI Chapter in the world with over 10,000 members.
Moving from Problematic to Collaborative
New! Half Day Saturday
Saturday, November 21, 2015, 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM
4 PDUs; $220.00 per person
NOVA Reston Center
1831 Wiehle Avenue, Room 309
Reston, VA 20190
Metro Accessible: Wiehle-Reston East (Silver Line)
call 703-450-2551 or email Veronica Ortiz at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Arlington Employment Center
2100 Washington Blvd, Arlington, VA 22204
FREE and open to the public!
E-mail Edythe Richards at email@example.com to sign up.
admittance 15 minutes after the start of the workshop is not permitted.
On October 13, ACLI faculty from all of NOVA’s campuses gathered at NOVA’s Pender location to develop new ideas and strategies to apply in their classrooms. About 70 faculty members attended the event, which was kicked off by a demonstration of MyEnglishLab, an online program for ESL instructors presented by Pearson Education representative Lynn Napolitano.
“I am honored to be a part of helping and appreciating your faculty and you! It was a fabulous learning occasion for all, as well as good venue for faculty to socialize with colleagues.” (Lynn Napolitano, Pearson ELT Representative)
Learning sessions for ACLI faculty
Three concurrent learning sessions provided attendees with new strategies to help ACLI faculty approach learning and language challenges that are a part of every ESL student’s experience.
“I just want to take a moment to say thank you for the fabulous day you made for us yesterday. The presentations were very motivating and provided many ideas for improvements in my own classes. Also, the luncheon was exquisite!! …Thank you very very much for making our day so special!” (ACLI Faculty, NOVA)
Meeting the Unique Challenges of Saudi Learners in American IEPs
Betsy Wong [firstname.lastname@example.org], an ACLI instructor at NOVA’s Alexandria campus, presented an overview of the differing educational and cultural expectations to which Saudi learners must adjust when attending higher education institutions in the United States. She offered strategies to help instructors tap into these learners’ strengths in order to navigate a whole new way of learning.
Separating Difference from Disability in an ESL Classroom
Antonina Rodgers, ACLI Coordinator at NOVA’s Annandale campus, led a workshop that explored ways to identify different issues impeding student academic progress. She discussed different cognitive learning styles and acculturation stress, which may present symptoms very similar to those of disabilities.
Engaging ELLs and Building Student Confidence in Oral and Written Communication: Effective Uses of Web 2.0 Tools
Krisztina Domjan, an ACLI/ESL instructor at NOVA’s Annandale campus, offered participants a foundation for creating stimulating, challenging and engaging activities relevant to English language learners. ACLI instructors had a hands-on opportunity to learn how to enhance learning through the application of Web 2.0 tools to strengthen oral and written communication skills in their students.
Engaging Your Students:
Genres that Work in the Writing Classroom
After a delicious lunch, the ACLI faculty enjoyed a lively presentation by Nigel Caplan, an ESL instructor and materials writer. (his bio is below.) Nigel began his presentation with the question, “What have you written lately?” and waited patiently while his audience responded with the usual: emails, texts, greeting cards, lesson plans, and other daily writing tasks.
“No one in this room, I’ve noticed, has recently written a five-paragraph essay.”
Nigel’s presentation taught the faculty that using different writing genres, rather than rhetorical modes, increases student motivation, adds authenticity to tasks, and promotes writing and language development. He presented three flexible classroom-tested assignments that teach comparative and descriptive writing as well as task-essential grammar in meaningful contexts: an email, a restaurant review, and a real estate listing.
Inspired faculty is innovative faculty.
This day was a perfect opportunity to celebrate all that NOVA’s faculty contribute to the ACLI program and their daily efforts both in and out of the classroom to help our ESL students succeed. Teachers enjoyed chatting about classes and non-ESL related matters, and ACLI was happy to host ESL faculty from NOVA’s College ESL program, as well as Virginia Tech LCI faculty. ACLI hopes to continue its collaboration with area ESL programs in providing professional opportunities for its faculty.
“When I attend something like yesterday’s Teacher Appreciation Day, I typically fear that I will be spending several rather dull hours. However, the event yesterday was excellent. I found Betsy Wong’s talk on Saudi learners in American IEPs to be very interesting and I could have listened to Nigel Caplan talk for at least another hour. More importantly, both talks provided a wealth of ideas for the classroom. I’m looking forward to the next event.” (John Bennett, ACLI instructor)
“The entire day was an enormous success! Tonia’s ‘Difference vs. Disability’ talk and handouts made me look at the question I often ask myself about a student from a totally different perspective. Nigel’s presentation was outstanding, thought provoking, informative, educational and…..entertaining. An accomplished speaker and a thoughtful man.” (Kathy Ferguson, ACLI instructor)
Nigel Caplan is an assistant professor of English as Second Language (ESL) at the University of Delaware English Language Institute, and he has also taught at Michigan State University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia University, and the Wust Summer School in Germany.
Nigel is also an ESL materials writer. His publications include Grammar Choices for Graduate and Professional Writers (Michigan, 2012), Inside Writing 2 and 4 (Oxford, 2014), and the advanced reading/writing book in Oxford University Press’s Q: Skills for Success series (2011, 2015). He has also published professional chapters and articles, mainly on the topic of teaching academic writing to graduate and undergraduate ESL students, and he regularly presents at conferences and professional development workshops. Nigel’s blog: nigelteacher.wordpress.com.
NOVA’s American Culture and Language Institute (ACLI) teaches ESL to students from all over the world. Part of NOVA’s Workforce Development Division, ACLI offers classes at most NOVA campuses and centers and at some workplaces in Northern Virginia.
ACLI offers several language programs for beginning to advanced-level learners. Many of the Intensive English Program (IEP) students have F-1 student visas. Core Skills ESL offers part-time ESL classes for immigrants or students who are in the U.S. temporarily. ACLI Specialty ESL Courses such as ESL for Employment, TOEFL Preparation, and Culture and Conversation are popular with local residents, workers, and students. ACLI also provides customized ESL classes for the workplace through Contract Training programs.
Resilience is the ability to adapt to and overcome adversity. Individuals and communities are able to rebuild after devastating tragedies. Violence and environmental disasters in recent years have touched all of us in some way. Whether directly or indirectly, we have all felt loss. In our daily lives we feel stress, and we learn to cope with changes. We have all learned lessons from mistakes in both our private and professional lives.
Some, however, appear to be more resilient than others. How do people seem to “roll with the punches” in the face of chaos? How does a coworker bounce back after a poor review?
“Resilience is the ability to adapt well in response to stressful events. In our lives we may experience tragedy, adversity, or real or perceived sources of stress. These events can occur in our family or significant relationships, workplace, health, or financial situations.” [©2014 Amplified Life Media. Reprint, “Bouncing Back,” liveandworkwell.com]
You can probably guess that resilience is essential for anyone who works with people. Whether you are a leader or an entry-level worker, your ability to be resilient will affect how you perform your job. Whether you are a corporate trainer or a cybersecurity expert, you must remain focused on goals regardless of sudden changes and surprises.
Resilience is an essential skill.
Why do some people struggle and fail, while others succeed and thrive? It’s not necessarily upbringing, education, or experience. In order to help people cope with adversity and thrive with uncertainty and change, resilience is an essential skill. The good news is that all of us can learn to be more resilient!
In June, Doug Hensch, Executive Coach and president of DRH Group, presented a mini-workshop at PMI Washington DC’s Loudoun Community Lunch and Learn, entitled 5 Secrets to Resilience. Tailored for anyone interested in finding new ways to improve their own levels of resilience, the workshop teaches skills to effectively fight stress and anxiety. This workshop is popular with most who have attended, including an Agile Program Director who enjoyed Doug’s teaching style:
“… the entire class is engaged, it includes great videos with a great sense of humor. Anyone can teach a bunch of principles to a group and see what sticks, only a few individuals like Doug can show us how to apply these principles in our everyday lives.” (Linkedin recommendation, September 17, 2015)
Leaders who want to be more interactive and bring out the best in their team will benefit from Doug’s class as well. Many of us will easily recognize the natural-born leaders among us; they are the ones who can bounce back from defeat and inspire others. They are also the ones who are naturally able to cope with risk and change. They are resilient.
PMI Seminars at NOVA
Through NOVA’s education alliance with the PMI Washington DC Chapter, the Workforce Development Division offers customized seminars on a variety of topics of interest to PMI members. NOVA is a category B provider. Seminars are being held through December in Reston, Woodbridge, and Arlington.
The first seminar being offered is 5 Secrets to Resilience, Doug Hensch’s day-long workshop. This workshop is focused on helping employees, managers, and leaders improve their ability to cope with adversity, uncertainty, and change. The content of the course is backed by over 30 years of research and delivered in an engaging, entertaining format that gives participants the tools they need to thrive in difficult times.
Additional PMI courses are available, and registration is open now:
October 24, NOVA Woodbridge
Successful Federal Contracts Administration
[register online now]
December 11, Arlington Center
Breakthrough Project Portfolio Performance
[register online now]
Doug Hensch is an executive coach, group facilitator and consultant with over 20 years of experience. He brings a wealth of experience and passion to the work through a simple philosophy: Set meaningful goals. Identify your strengths. Work in them regularly.
For more information on PMI Washington DC events, visit their website and make sure to check out the monthly PMIWDC Loudoun Community Lunch and Learn opportunities. The October 12 lunch will discuss Difficult Conversations for Project Managers, with Professional & Personal Development Coach Francis Roman, REI Systems Inc.