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|March 29, 2017 ||
Vol. 47 No. 22
"This may be GBA's biggest gift to our company this year," said one CEO. "The 11-modules saved my firm hundreds of development hours," said another CEO.
Effective Project Managers are key to the success of all geoprofessional businesses. GBA recognizes development of highly effective Project Managers requires training, experience, and mentorship in numerous areas. GBA has developed, with support of member-firm volunteers, a Project Manager essential skills training course to support and augment training available by member-firms.
GBA's Fundamental Elements for Project Managers course is a fully developed course to help you introduce and discuss the essential skills needed as a Project Manager. It is intended to enhance your existing Project Manager training program and can be augmented with other reference material provided for project managers by GBA.
These 11-module Project Managers course includes (in part) the following topics:
The PowerPoint format of this course has been developed so that it can be given in a group setting by a leader in your organization or used as a self-teaching tool by an individual. The course can be delivered all at once in an 8-hour day, or a module at a time as time permits. Each module contains a short quiz at the end to confirm clarity on the topics presented. Each module also includes a printable completion certificate. Module 11 includes a printable Course Completion Certificate for those that have completed all the modules of this course.
- Generating new business opportunities and winning proposals;
- Understanding client requirements;
- Planning the project scope, schedule and budget;
- Negotiating client contracts;
- Monitoring and managing cash flow, including invoicing and collections; and,
- Leading the project team.
Members can download it here:
Fundamental Elements of Project Management
GBA is built on a foundation of collaboration and contribution that benefits all, and GBA committees' service fosters valuable relationships and leadership skills. The volunteers who join GBA committees provide guidance and direction to the association’s services and even play a huge part in developing new resources of value to all members.
"The strength of GBA is in our volunteers. Our Committees identify members' needs and they collaborate on solutions. We are very fortunate to have such dedicated volunteers and we are always looking for more." said Joel Carson, GBA's Executive Director
GBA rewards volunteers with recognition, gratitude, and the opportunity to bring attention and effort to those geoprofessional business issues about which they themselves are passionate. That commitment may result in a new contribution to the industry that would never have been possible without the leadership of that volunteer.
The more you put into an organization, the more you get out of it. Speak with any committee member and you'll learn that's especially the case for GBA. Our committees and business councils are on the cutting edge, getting things done for our members and the geoprofessions. Sign up today to become a member of one or more councils or committees in your fields of interest. Check out our council and committee list for details about each, then sign up for the ones you want to join.
More Information about GBA's Committees/Councils
Small Business Computing
You've heard of ransomware, no doubt; illegal programs that infiltrate PCs as worms or Trojans, and then use encryption to deny victims access to their own files, until they pay a ransom. The FBI estimates that, in all of 2015, ransomware victims lost $24 million. In 2016, the number jumped to $209 million, but only for January-March. MonsterCloud, a managed-security-services provider, recently surveyed 284 U.S. companies and found that all large businesses are already combating ransomware, as are most midsized businesses. But when it comes to small businesses, 85 of 100 have failed to secure their e-mail, data, and backups. As a precaution against ransomware, geoprofessional-firm managers should regularly back up their data, increase password strength, limit remote services, disable unused files, and eliminate inactive users. And that's just for starters.
Sujan Patel is involved in four start-ups, with personnel and partners in Europe, Sydney, Austin, San Francisco, Minneapolis, Indianapolis, Melbourne, and London. He travels a lot and has revealed what he considers to be the top-ten productivity boosters while he's on the road.
Meeting Management: Keeping track of multiple meetings when on the road is challenging. Patel’s solution? He uses Pick.co; "It's made it incredibly easy to coordinate meetings with all of my teams, even when I'm traveling."
Social Networking: "I... want to make sure I'm always sharing great stuff with my followers. I use Buffer (along with Quuu) to curate great content and keep it rolling out."
Project integration: Patel uses Asana for project management, and Trello to monitor and manage content creation with the teams.
In an effort to learn what's important to today's employees, two companies — Justworks and SquareFoot — interviewed 314 U.S. small-business employees and 47 small-business owners. Their results were surprising: Employees said flexible work hours and remote-work capabilities were more important even than unlimited paid time-off. Seventy percent of employees surveyed ranked flexible work hours as very important; 68% said flexible hours have a positive impact on their teams. Similarly, 57% believe remote-work capabilities are very important, while 60 percent believe they have a positive impact on their teams. In fact, when ranking work benefits and perks against salary, 42% of the employees said they would take a lower-paying job if it offered more workplace flexibility. The ability for employees to shape their own work schedule and workplace factors are becoming growing considerations during the job-search process; 76% of the surveyed employers believe that allowing employees to work flexible hours or outside the office are must-have perks if they are to win the talent competition.
One of the biggest problems with the "seller/doer" project-management model embraced by so many geoprofessional firms is the "seller" part. Some practitioners love selling. Most seem not to, and some just refuse to. Those who do it, but somewhat reluctantly, probably wish they were more gregarious. Wishing won't do it, but practice can, especially if you are familiar with 25 phrases to break the ice, get "the other person" to talk, and then start a relationship. Some of these fall into the category of cordiality; e.g., "It's so good to see you"; "Please"; "Thank you"; and "You're welcome" (as opposed to the wretched "No problem"). You can demonstrate interest by asking something like, "I heard you have a great story about...," providing you know the person has such a story. From interest you can move to recognition, by saying, "You were right about..." or "You might not realize this, but..." From there you can go to phrases that challenge, set limits, enthuse ("Congratulations!"), and support ("I know you can do it."). The most successful sellers get the conversation going (these phrases make it easier) and then listen to what the other person says, asking questions to demonstrate you care. Thank you for reading. You can do this!
Mark your calendar for these outstanding GBA get-togethers, and be on the lookout for announcements about others being finalized.
For a complete list of upcoming events, click here.
The Washington Post
Rep. Peter A. DeFazio is betting that Americans will pay a penny more at the pump to pay for infrastructure investment, and he's doubling down on the wager with the belief they wouldn't even notice. The Oregon Democrat has introduced a bill in Congress that would add about a penny per year to the 18.4-cent federal gas, revenue that could be leveraged in the bond market to raise an additional $17 billion a year for roads, bridges and transit systems.
The Detroit News
California is not just fighting nature as it attempts to repair the damaged main spillway at the nation's tallest dam, pounded last month by surging storm waters. It's also racing the clock. Safety experts say there is no time for delays in the state plan to restore the critical main spillway at the 770-foot Oroville Dam, and they warn that California would face a "very significant risk" if the spillway is not in working order by fall, the start of the next rainy season.
The Associaed Press via The Mercury News
A judge has rejected opponents' latest attempt to stall California's $64 billion high-speed rail project, but will consider their arguments before the state issues voter-approved bonds next month. Sacramento County Superior Court Judge Raymond Cadei ruled against a temporary restraining order sought by Kings County and other opponents.
There's a name for too much coming at you in the healthcare industry. "They call it alarm fatigue," said Mika Majapuro, director of product development for Glenview, Ilinois–based Teletrac Navman. When it comes to construction job site adoption of augmented reality — the layering of digital data and information over a real-time visual interface — Majapuro anticipates a similar challenge, especially as smart devices, sensors and internet of things-enabled equipment continue to proliferate
Renewable energy is getting so cheap that it is threatening to force gigawatts of coal plants into early retirement — even without Obama-era climate regulations. That is one of the takeaways from a new report released by Moody's Investors Service. Although the White House is expected to soon announce the end of the Clean Power Plan — which President Trump has blamed as a culprit in coal's decline — the power of the market and state-level action may well blunt the impact of the move.
The classic difficulty in reaching high levels of renewable power has typically been balancing them with fossil fuel generation. But as battery storage, demand management and efficiency become more entrenched, lawmakers in California see a way around new gas-fired plants.
The signage is all around — that renewable energy has all green lights ahead, despite the current White House's emphasis on the expansion of traditional fossil fuels. Both corporate America and the governors from 20 states are going all-in to support sustainable fuels. Their reasoning is grounded in economics — that the cost of wind and solar technologies has fallen dramatically and that, in turn, has led to their impressive growth.
Los Angeles Times
The Newport-Inglewood fault has long been considered one of Southern California's top seismic danger zones because it runs under some of the region's most densely populated areas, from the Westside of Los Angeles to the Orange County coast. But new research shows that the fault may be even more dangerous than experts had believed, capable of producing more frequent destructive temblors than previously suggested by scientists.
U.S. News & World Report
Maryland is close to cutting cords with the hydraulic fracturing industry and officially becoming the third state to ban the practice statewide. The Republican governor supports the ban, and all it needs now is a full Senate vote. Throughout Maryland's 2017 legislative session, there has been debate over whether to ban the drilling practice known as fracking indefinitely or to put another two-year moratorium in place.
Last November's magnitude 7.8 Kaikoura earthquake was so complex and unusual that it is likely to lead to changes in the way scientists think about earthquake hazards in plate boundary zones worldwide, a new study says. Not only was it a record-setter for its complexity, but it was also one of the best recorded large earthquakes anywhere in the world.
| || 2016-2017 GBA BOARD OF DIRECTORS|
Laura R. Reinbold, P.E.
(Terracon / Nashville, TN)
Charles L. Head, P.E., P.G.
(Sanborn, Head & Associates, Inc. / Concord, NH)
Woodward L. Vogt, P.E., D.GE, F.ACI, F.ASCE, F.ASTM
(Paradigm Consultants, Inc. / Houston, TX)
Thomas W. Blackburn, P.E., G.E., F.ASCE
(Blackburn Consulting / Auburn, CA)
Arthur G. Hoffmann, P.E., D.GE
(Gannett Fleming, Inc. / Harrisburg, PA)
Kenneth R. Johnston
(GZA GeoEnvironmental, Inc. / Norwood, MA)
Kimberly F. Morrison, P.E., R.G.
(Morrison Geotechnical Solutions, Inc. / Denver, CO)
Alex Sy, Ph.D., P. Eng.
(Klohn Crippen Berger Ltd. / Vancouver, BC)
7701 Las Colinas Ridge, Ste. 800, Irving, TX 75063