Project Management Quotes

The first 90% of the software takes 90% of the development time. The remaining 10% of the code takes up the other 90% of the time.

If you are not moving at the speed of the marketplace you’re already dead – you just haven’t stopped breathing yet.

Over the years, particularly in North America, Kanban has been undermined by those confusing or simplifying it to just sticky notes on a board. It was never about sticky notes on a board. Visualization was an element we added later. It was always about limiting WIP and deferred commitment and doing so to improve service delivery via relief from overburdening, controlling variability and disruption that affects flow, and minimizing transaction and coordination costs for overheads in planning, scheduling, reporting and delivery. Kanban was the enabler of the true essence of Toyota’s culture for knowledge work.

The danger about not being clear about this distinction (“target condition” from “target”) is that there are many different ways to achieve target outcome numbers, many of which have little to do with actually improving how processes are operating. Having numerical outcome targets is important, but even more important are the means by which we achieve those targets.

— Toyota Kata

Project managers function as bandleaders who pull together their players each a specialist with individual score and internal rhythm. Under the leader’s direction, they all respond to the same beat

— L.R. Sayles

If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up people together to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea

— Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Our plans miscarry because they have no aim. When a man does not know what harbor he is making for, no wind is the right wind

— Seneca (4 B.C.-65 A.D.)

Trying to manage a project without project management is like trying to play a football game without a game plan.

If everyone is thinking alike, someone isn’t thinking.

— General George Patton Jr

Get the right people. Then no matter what all else you might do wrong after that, the people will save you. That’s what management is all about.

— Tom DeMarco

Assumption is the mother of all screw-ups

— Wethern’s Law of Suspended Judgement

The testers won’t break the system but the user who thinks the cd-rom drive as a drinks holder will.

— Cornelius Fitchner

Do not repeat the tactics which have gained you one victory, but let your methods be regulated by the infinite variety of circumstances

— Sun Tzu

When the territory and the map disagree, believe the territory.

— Swiss Army Manual

In NASA, we never punish error. We only punish the concealment of error.

— Al Siepert

Being great requires making waves. It requires taking risks. And it requires saying “no” to people who want to hear “yes.” In the end, people value calm waters and safety more than they value being great.

Data is like garbage. You’d better know what you are going to do with it before you collect it.

— Mark Twain

Why do so many professionals say they are project managing, when what they are actually doing is fire fighting?

— Colin Bentley

The P in PM is as much about ‘people management’ as it is about ‘project management’.

— Cornelius Fichtner

No matter how good the team or how efficient the methodology, if we’re not solving the right problem, the project fails

— Woody Williams

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