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Cleo S.

Villanueva DITCC111 Advanced IT Project Management August 19, 2016

Summarize three of Coveys habits in your own words and give examples of how these habits would apply to
project management. Document your ideas in a short paper, and include at least two references.

Habit one: Be proactive

Covey suggested that a project manager should be business oriented, have the ability to anticipate and
foresee problems before they surfaced, take action before things escalate. They also have the courage to do
something beyond the norm, be confident and determined if they belief that it will benefit the whole.

Example:
Customers seldom have a 100% clear idea about what they are expecting from the result of a project.
Project manager should get a clear understanding of what the customers need, instead of what they
want. S/he needs to think ahead of any possible problem or changes that could be raised by the
customers during project development, and then proposes them ideas or options even before the
project starts. This proactive habit not only helps project planning, saves time and cost on possible
changes, but also enhances customer satisfaction at the same time.

Habit Four: Think Win-Win

Covey stressed that the success of a project is dependent on the interrelations and behaviour of people, in
most cases thinking win-win is the best choice. However, there could be conflicting situations that a win/lose
paradigm is necessary. The target is to gain as much winnings as possible on the overall result.

Example:
Some Project Managers might use incentives or rewards to promote productivity of team members.
But conflicts of resources may hinder the performance of individual worker or department. Take for
instance, a project needs testings at various stage, that require its own staff to be the testers to get
the sample results. If it is possible to group different tests together, share a common section with the
minimum testers, it will reduce time and cost of the project as a whole. Project Managers need to
emphasize overall achievements (win-win) that should out-weight individual success, and to reward
"sacrificing (lose)" team members as well. Sometimes return of investment is not obvious, Project
Managers need to anticipate the long-term result to see if a temporary win/lose solution is more
appropriate

Habit Five: Seek first to understand, than to be understood

Covey stated that active listening is very important in communication with team members and all
stakeholders. It is done through listening carefully to other people's words first, then summarize and
rephrase what we heard in order to clarify we get the exact message across

Example:
In coordinating a project, the project manager will need to communicate well with all concerned
people, include his/her team members, the client, and the higher management. If a project falls
behind schedule, the manager has to look for the cause of delay, most probably need to ask the
responsible team member(s) what problem has happen. Would there be conflicts in assigning
resources? Would there be changes unexpected? Would there be difficulties that need extra
attention? Is the team member(s) having some tough personal issue that makes him/her hard to

Chapter 9, Exercise 5 Page 1


focus? If a client keep changing his/her mind, have we tried to listen and find out what s/he needs,
instead of what s/he wants which might not be well-presented from our own perspective? The habit
of active or empathic listening can help the Project Manager to see a clearer picture of what is
happening or what will happen, and put it under his/her own control.

Reference

Schwalbe, K. (2006). Information Technology Project Management (4th ed.). Boston, Massachusetts:
Thomson Course Technology.

Ross, D. (1996). Applying Covey's Seven Habits to a Project Management Career. PM Network. Retrieved
October 17, 2007,

Chapter 9, Exercise 5 Page 2