Project Management Institute

The enthusiasm factor

THE ENTHUSIASM FACTOR

You can go from apathy to eagerness with the right motivation.

BY ALFONSO BUCERO, MSc, PMP, CONTRIBUTING EDITOR

When I looked for ways to motivate myself early in my career, I saw every project not only as a learning opportunity but also an opportunity to make people happier. And the key to doing that was fostering enthusiasm.

As a project manager, there's a way to develop enthusiasm so meaningful and profound that it will not decline no matter what strain it is put under:

  1. Decide what particular personal characteristic you want to strengthen.
  2. Develop it by acting as if you already possess the desired characteristic.
  3. Believe and repeatedly affirm that you're in the process of creating the quality you're working to develop.

If you want to be a more enthusiastic, for example, you must act with enthusiasm!

Another practice to foster an optimistic attitude is that of “mental ventilation.” Clear your mind of the gloomy, foreboding thoughts that prevent the cheerful and spirited thinking that stimulates enthusiasm.

Getting up on the Right Side of the Bed

A vital element in developing enthusiasm as a project manager is the manner in which you start the day. Approaching each morning with enthusiasm can set the tone for the entire day—despite any disappointing news you may face.

I always read some positive sentences after having my breakfast. Regardless of how busy my day is going to be, for those few minutes, I don't permit any hurry or haste, even in thought.

As you progress in your career, many things conspire to dull your enthusiasm: disappointments, project failures, frustrated hopes, unmet ambitions and the inevitable energy drain. But such deterioration of your life force happens only if you allow it. If you make a real effort, you can remain an enthusiastic project manager.

To maintain enthusiasm, you must find your motivators. I‘m always looking for new projects and initiatives that help me feel alive and happy. Develop your enthusiasm and apply your passion to managing the people involved in your projects.

Start the day focused on your blessings, and you will react to your issues with a more positive approach—and your enthusiasm will never die. PM

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As a project manager, there's a way to develop enthusiasm so meaningful and profound that it will not decline no matter what strain it is put under.

 

Alfonso Bucero, MSc, PMP, is an independent consultant who manages projects throughout Europe and Asia. He is the author of Today Is a Good Day!: Attitudes for Achieving Project Success.

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This material has been reproduced with the permission of the copyright owner. Unauthorized reproduction of this material is strictly prohibited. For permission to reproduce this material, please contact PMI.

PM NETWORK AUGUST 2011 WWW.PMI.ORG

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