How I Became A More Technical Project Manager

Digital project managers are often told “being technical” isn’t required and can be picked up on the job. This topic was even debated at a recent Digital PM Summit with most panelists agreeing that technical skills weren’t fully necessary if strong project management skills existed. My experience has shown that acquiring technical competency can make a tremendous difference in the confidence level and trust-building abilities of a project manager. Continue Reading ›

Experiments in Project Management Automation

Effective project managers and producers want to focus on what is truly important and not become bogged down in administrative “busy work”. Even further, it is not always possible to work within ideal tools and workflows which can cause a frustrating decrease in usual efficiencies. Fortunately, automated tools are becoming increasingly available to help managers offload tedious, time-consuming or routine tasks and get back to solving bigger challenges. Here are some of my own recent experiments in project management automation. Continue Reading ›

Team Debt and Team Value

When an agency is selling or promoting their work, an often undervalued factor is the value of their teams. We put a lot of effort into refining pricing, crafting an impressive pitch and touting individual credentials, but I would argue that a client also gains tremendous value in a well-run project team.

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Thank You Sparkbox

For just over two years, I’ve been fortunate to be a part of the Sparkbox team where I was able to serve great clients and help our teams deliver exceptional work. This January, I’ll be taking a new position closer to my new home in West Michigan, but I wanted to mark the end of my time there with some thoughts. I’ve learned so much being a member of this team – both professionally and personally.

CodePen Radio

Katie, Jeremy and I on CodePen Radio talking about the redesign

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Pricing Web Projects: A Project Manager’s Perspective

Throughout my career, I’ve managed web projects with various pricing arrangements. From fixed fee to hourly billing and even bartering, I have seen pros and cons to each of these scenarios. I’ve been an avid hourly billing supporter for several years, but I recently had the opportunity to manage a fixed fee project and was reminded of the benefits to this approach as well.

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Overcoming Your Bias Against Project Managers

This post originally appeared on the Sparkbox Foundry.

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Project managers? They’re just glorified secretaries, says the senior team member during my new employee training. I was newly out of college, working as a web analyst in a large digital agency, and anxious for my first week of job training. I’d already been warned about the project managers. They will interrupt you with silly questions, make you explain your work or bug you with unnecessary questions.

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