The Books


Projects for Profit: An insider’s guide to delivering projects and getting paid is presented in two parts.  Part 1 discusses six topics essential to the services business:

1.  Evolution of a Business Lifecycle.  Shows how the tenets of the PMBOK Project Management Process Groups can be evolved into a universal business lifecycle, and why this is the foundation for all that follows.

2.  Organizational Responsibilities.  Explains the essentials of how the firm should organize in either centralized or decentralized models, and introduces the key role of delivery management as a counterpart to sales.

3.  A Risk System.  Promotes a risk-based approach to managing the project as well as a portfolio of projects held by the firm.  Provides all the information and techniques needed to create a risk system that operates at both the project and business level, and is integrated into the lifecycle.  

4.  Estimation Anxiety.  Explains the root causes of poor estimating within the sales-oriented firm and the elements of culture change needed to repair the situation.  Supplements the average project manager’s knowledge of estimating with techniques designed to support accurate estimates when project knowledge and analysis time are less than desired. 

5. The Quality Conundrum.  Diagnoses difficulties in tackling quality as a failure to recognize the subjective and objective views, and the weak grounding in quality methods of many project managers.  Shows ways of bridging these viewpoints and defines three principles the firm should follow.

6.  Finance Matters.  Uses a model of the services business to illustrate how important it is for Finance and Professional Services to come out of their silos, speak the same language, and share metrics.

Part 2 documents a Commercial Delivery Methodology - the CDM:

7. Assessing the Opportunity. Evaluating the opportunity, screening risks, and making the decision to bid.

8. Bidding the Project.  Bid planning and preparation, including SWOT methods, SOW checklists, formats for estimating, and risk templates.

9. Initiating the Project.  Contract negotiation and order entry using a consistent project structure.  Organizing, planning, and proceduralizing the project with the client, authorizing time charges, and the joint kickoff meeting.

10.Executing the Project.  Methods of assigning work, monitoring deliverables, time charges, and progress.  Reporting status to the client and internally to the firm, using standard forms for auditable progress metrics, and risk alerting using performance chain analysis and risk indicator checklists. Solutions for internal business management.

11.Completing the Project.  Effective approach to project acceptance and final sign-off, transitioning the project to client support and vendor maintenance, financial settlement, and internal completion procedures.

The final chapter 12 covers additional territory of interest to anyone entering the project services world and also shows how the CDM can be engineered for different types of firms and projects, and then progressively implemented.  The book includes a brief set of references, and a glossary.

Projects for Profit is currently out of print and is partly superseded by Commercial Project Management.

Projects for Profit


TMI - Tempest Management Inc.

Specialists in project management

Tel: (403) 686-2155


Located in Calgary, Alberta, CANADA

Ten Commandments of Project Management: A brief guide to the art of project management was assembled after a career spent specifying processes, tools, and techniques that seemed to fit the needs of the project environment, but didn’t really solve the ‘people issues’ that seem to drive most project success factors. A toolkit full of processes and techniques is useful, but certainly doesn’t guarantee success. I concluded something that project managers don’t want to hear – projects often fail because project managers make mistakes! I believe that by naming these mistakes and the behaviour that caused them, we can recognize and learn to avoid them in the future.

So, how do I propose to short-circuit the road to experience, without repeated semesters at the School of Hard Knocks? Well, this is where the analogy with the Ten Commandments comes into play. Ten rules for project management behaviour, always valid, always practical, and guaranteed to accelerate the project manager’s learning curve.

In my experience, none of these commandments are “easy”. Indeed, it seems to me that we are programmed by our personalities to do the very opposite of what good project management behaviour demands. Why is that? Behavioural science has some answers, but still hasn’t come up with the ideal personality type for a project manager. Is a thinker, or a relationship person, or a promoter, or a full-steam ahead, ‘damn the torpedoes’ type of person the best? We don’t know, they all have their strengths and weaknesses. But we do think that whatever your type, you will enjoy increased project success with these ten project management commandments written into your playbook.

Ten Commandments of Project Management

Commercial Project Management was published by Routledge in Spring 2017.

This is a ‘how-to’ book for project and business managers working in a commercial or contracted environment looking for practical guidance on conducting their projects and organizing their firm. This collection of practical advice, case histories, explanatory illustrations, useful techniques, and proven checklists will give vendor project managers a confidence boost and a head start in their demanding role.

Please refer to Downloads for more details on TCPM and CPM

Commercial Project Management