Author Archives: donmcalister

About donmcalister

I retired at the end of 2011, after a 39 year career in the Aerospace industry as an Propulsion Engineer, Engineering Manager and Program Manager. My professional interests and expertise is in the areas of Program, Risk and Knowledge Management. I'm passionate about life-long learning involving a wide variety of topics and I'm committed to sharing my knowledge and ideas with those who are interested. My primary hobby is performing jazz music. I'm a jazz keyboard player, and vocalist, and I'm on the Board of Directors of the non-profit Simi Valley Jazz Club, which is dedicated to the preservation and promotion of jazz music from the '20's through the 60's.

Ego-Think

      Ego-Think  An egocentric person Thinks the world is thurstin’ For the “wisdom” that they know is theirs. So they opine things all day long And although they frequently are wrong They never seem to be uncertain of … Continue reading

Posted in Better Thinking, coaching, Humor, Leadership, Life, Personal Development, poetry, teaching, That's Life, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Chaos & Creativity

        If our lives were as simple as we often wish they would be Black and white…yes and no…and complexity free. Then the world would be easier to bear don’t you think? Or would the boredom of … Continue reading

Posted in Best Practices, Better Thinking, coaching, Leadership, Life, mentoring, Personal Development, poetry, Risk Management, teaching, That's Life | Leave a comment

Our Love/Hate Relationship with Uncertainty

If uncertainty is the state of not knowing what we need or want to know, then we must hate it…right? After all, uncertainty that matters is what we define as risk. Risk is what keeps us up at night. Worrying … Continue reading

Posted in Better Thinking, coaching, Life, Personal Development, teaching, That's Life, Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Self-Inflicted Project Management Wounds

  Forensic assessments of failed and troubled projects often reveal that the direct causes of the problems, and/or the contributing factors, are self-inflicted. The damage caused by these project management “friendly-fire” incidents can be significant and long lasting. Consider these … Continue reading

Posted in Best Practices, Better Thinking, coaching, Knowledge Sharing, Leadership, Program & Knowledge Management, Project Baseline Management, Project Management, Risk Management | 2 Comments

Pull Me Leadership

      “Push me towards your goals and I will resist, looking backwards at you as the source of my irritation. But, shine a light on your goal, extend your hand to pull me forward, and I will reach … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Basics, Art & Heart

At a recent Rotary Club meeting, our speaker, Mike Sheppard, a retired college and professional football coach, remarked that, “the best coaches teach at three levels: basics, art and heart.”  This simple, but elegant phrase captures the essence of what … Continue reading

Posted in Better Thinking, coaching, Heroes, Knowledge Sharing, Leadership, Life, mentoring, Personal Development, poetry, Rotary Club, teaching | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Our Work Lives & the Relevance Imperative

I’ve spent a lot of time recently, thinking about our psychological need for relevance, and the huge impact it has on the way we live our lives. I’m speaking here about personal relevance, which I will define as the degree … Continue reading

Posted in Best Practices, Better Thinking, Leadership, Life, Personal Development | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment