New PMI Member Benefits

PMI Visa CardRemember the American Express slogan, Membership Has Its Privileges? Well, PMI is working on providing more membership privileges...and benefits for your $129 a year membership dues.

What would you think about getting your medical insurance or next credit card through PMI?

Personally, I would be happy with PMI discount codes for travel expenses like hotel and airlines or consumables like Sharpies and Post-It notes.  Check out what PMI is offering!  I may actually look into the Pet Insurance.

These new member benefits initially will be available to PMI members in the United States. Members can learn more about these programs by visiting the Benefits of Membership page on

Insurance Benefits

· Auto · Prescription Discounts · Home · Medical · Dental · Life Insurance · Pet Insurance · Annuities

PMI Credit Card

· No annual fee · Low introductory APR on purchases and no balance transfer fees for six months · 1% cash back that can be used on merchandise, travel (no blackout dates), event tickets, activities, gift cards, and account credits

Value Proposition for the Expensive Meeting

I got a lot of feedback from people after they read of my $17,902 meeting post.  I spoke to a few others in my office and they all agreed that the number sounded plausible. As I'm writing my proposal for corrective action, I will deliver it in the form of a value proposition. A value proposition is an analysis and quantified review of the benefits, costs and value that "something" an organization can deliver to customers and other constituent groups within and outside of the organization. It is also a positioning of value, where Value = Benefits / Cost (cost includes risk).  (Thank you Wikipedia for basis of that definition)

But, it's not as simple deliverable.

I use 7 stages of analysis.

  • Customer or market - Who am I creating the value proposition for?
  • Customer or market value - What do they say they value? (not what I say they value)
  • Offering - What is the product or service being proposed?
  • Benefits - What are the benefits? (Time, Money, Productivity,...)
  • Alternatives - What substitutes or alternatives are there? (like doing nothing)
  • Differentiation - How is my proposal different from anything else being offered?
  • Proof - What evidence do I have that I can do what you say?

In this case, I'm going to request a formal review of the Communications Plan, modifying it if necessary.  Because this is a status meeting (which is about reporting by one-way communication) not everyone needs to be there in person.  Before I go deep into my analysis, I'm going to bet I can apply the Pareto principle (80-20 rule) to get my point across.

If we do not devalue the benefit of the meeting, we can increase the overall value by decreasing cost.  That decreasing of cost, I would propose, would be asking 32 out of the 40 people to not attend the meeting in person.  By having 8 key linchpins (as defined by Seth Godin) attend this meeting, we could ensure the status is delivered and the message is not lost.

Other indirect communication methods could be used to ensure the information is distributed.  The slide deck and meeting minutes could be posted to a central location, allowing those who didn't attend the meeting in person to know what happened.  Whatever the final outcome, there is a big opportunity for cost savings.

Graphic: Pictofigo

This Is How You Know When To Kill A Project

Phone BooksAccording to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMB0K), projects are authorized due to internal business needs or external influences.  Project end is reached when the project's objectives have been achieved or when the project is terminated because its objectives will not or cannot be met, or when the need for the project no longer exists. This leads me to today's post.

Instead of finding the newspaper on my porch the other day, I discovered someone delivered a yellow pages book (business directory).  It’s been years since I actually opened a phone book.  There are no longer personal phone numbers in the book, only businesses.  Out of curiosity, I opened it to discover 1 in 4 of the advertisement being nothing more then ads to advertise in the yellow pages!  Did you follow that?  Advertisements to advertise.  I can appreciate the idea of continuing to print the phone book.  Anyone not having access to the Internet still needs to find a directory of businesses.  But after reviewing the quality of the product, it makes me question if it is time this thing went the way of the dinosaur.

All this time I thought the people receiving the phone were the customer.  They are not. It's the advertiser.  The creation of the project (or business) of printing phone books use to actually satisfy a need or provide a public service. People needed to find people and businesses needed a medium to tell potential customers they existed.

We've addressed the original need to start the project.  What about to end it?  With the increased usage of Google and Bing, very few people actually read their phone books to locate businesses.  Until businesses advertising in the phone book believe the cost of advertising in that medium outweighs the benefit it provides, it will continue.  Sounds a little bit like the newspaper industry, doesn't it?  There is a very similar parallel between the newspaper industry and the printed phone book industry.  They both believe or promote the scarcity of information.  That scarcity justifies cost.  To the contrary, we now live with an abundance of information.  That information is freely distributed and reaches a broader audience.

I find it ironic, printed on the phone book, the printer asks us to please recycle our “outdated” phone books.  To satisfy their request, this brand new phone book is going right into the recycling bin.  Though I do believe the end is near for the paper-based phone book, I have a recommendation for them.  Since this printing company has our address to deliver the phone book, why don’t they send us a letter asking if we would like to opt-out of future deliveries?  You tell me, are you more apt to read something you've opted-in to or something sent to you like spam?

Photo courtesy of Getty Images