CELEBRATING WOMEN IN PROJECT MANAGEMENT 2020 SERIES
Location: Edwards, Colorado, USA
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Barb Waters has over 20 years of experience managing projects and implementing process improvements for Fortune 500 companies. She has been involved in the creation of contact centers for two state agencies, to support their digital transformation.
Barb has a number of project management certifications, including the Project Management Professional (PMP), PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP), and Certified Scrum Master (CSM). She served as a reviewer for the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) 6th edition and the Standard for Earned Value Management. However, her main focus is on assisting other professionals to become certified project managers and agile practitioners. Over the course of her career, Barb has trained over 3,500 students from a vast range of industries and locations around the world. Her monthly Bootcamps have become popular and well-attended.
Barb worked with the first U.S. company to win the coveted Deming Prize for Total Quality Management. She uses these guiding principles when leading organizations to achieve data-driven process improvement in their projects and operations. She employs strong data analysis concepts and techniques, and provides her clients with sustainable best practices.
Barb lives in Edwards, Colorado, USA with her husband Eric. She enjoys skiing and snowboarding, SCUBA diving, hiking, and community involvement.
What is your project management super power?
My super power is that I can give other people super powers. I can take really difficult concepts and show that they aren’t scary or impossible. Once we spend a little time together you will know everything I know and you can go on to share the information with others.
How can gender diversity be improved in the project management profession?
I think this is partially the responsibility of employers and decision-makers, but most of the responsibility rests on those of us who want to break into the field and move up the ladder. Honestly, we don’t want to be the Female (fill in the blank) of the Year. When you add the label it means that we are only the best of half the population. The true indication of a diverse profession is when the diversity isn’t promoted, forced, or calculated, but when it just is.
As the profession evolves, what skills do you think will be key for future success?
Adaptability and willingness to ask for help. Emotional intelligence and collaboration will be key.
How do you recover from difficult situations?
I take some time to reflect on what happened and allow myself to feel bad. I ask for feedback, and sometimes I have to be very clear that being nice won’t help me get better. I am genuinely thankful when someone shares their thoughts.
What are your tips and techniques for conflict resolution?
Listen! Realize that conflict is often a difference in values and what each person needs. When you work to find common ground you often realize that you want many of the same things.
Which 3 words best describe why you enjoy being a project manager?
Ownership, engagement, and sharing.
Hello amazing women of the project management world! My Celebrating Women in Project Management Series highlights your stories to inspire others, raise the profile of women in the project management profession, and to further strengthen our global network.
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