Summary of Stand Back and Deliver

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  • Innovative
  • Applicable


Managing projects and solving difficult situations within organizations can be devilishly difficult. Complexity and uncertainty can provoke inappropriate, even counterproductive, judgments and actions. In such circumstances, you need special tools and processes to help you sort out your strategy and make better choices. Co-authors Pollyanna Pixton, Niel Nickolaisen, Todd Little and Kent McDonald provide effective mechanisms for managing projects and solving problems. They approach business decision making with careful deliberation, analytical precision and sound reasoning. Their book provides the support systems you need to weigh your options and address your business dilemmas. getAbstract finds that leaders at all levels will benefit from knowing this book’s hands-on tools.

About the Authors

The authors are all partners at Accelinnova. Pollyanna Pixton heads Evolutionary Systems. Niel Nickolaisen is strategic planning director at Headwaters, Inc. Todd Little has vast software experience. Kent McDonald has been a program manager in numerous industries.



The Right Tools for the Job

Management is a remarkably tricky business. If you focus on the wrong factors, fail to get the needed buy-in, estimate poorly or make unfortunate choices, your business will suffer. To be an effective manager, you need to marshal the right resources, focus your efforts, determine your risks, get everyone on board, and deal with complexities and uncertainties. Some advanced project management or problem-solving tools (such as the “Purpose Alignment Model” and the “Context Leadership Model”) can help you make smart decisions and align your plans and activities with your company’s strategy. Leaders should pay attention to:

  1. “Purpose” – Define and fulfill your company’s – and your project’s – real intent.
  2. “Collaboration” – Use your employees’ combined expertise and knowledge.
  3. “Delivery” – Produce and deliver your project despite “uncertainty and complexity.”
  4. “Decisions” – Employ “value models” and “decision filters” to help you solve problems.


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