The Zen Approach to Project Management By George Pitagorsky

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Projects are often more complex and stressful than they need to be. Far too many of them fail to meet expectations. There are far too many conflicts. There are too few moments of joy and too much anxiety. But there is hope. It is possible to remove the unnecessary stress and complexity. This book is about how to do just that. It links the essential principles and techniques of managing projects to a “wisdom” approach for working with complex, people-based activities.

Project management becomes a metaphor for how we can live our lives and, if we follow the wisdom traditions, the way we live our lives becomes a metaphor for how to manage projects. The book guides readers in exploring how to:

  • Remove unnecessary stress and complexity from your projects
  • Apply mindfulness and open mindedness to cut through the barriers to personal self-actualization
  • Manage expectations to ensure that people get what they need, when they need it and for the cost they expected to pay and that they accept what they get
  • Manage performance to cut through interpersonal and intrapersonal issues that get in the way of excellence
  • Break free of self-imposed barriers to creative thinking, conflict resolution and problem solving
  • Remain calm and energetic while being active and effective in the face of chaos, fear, resistance to change, unrealistic demands, conflict and the other aspects of project life that cause stress


About the Author
George Pitagorsky, PMP consults on the implementation and improvement of management practices. George integrates process improvement, learning and development, knowledge and engagement management.  He has developed and implemented methodologies, curricula and competency models and has performed PM assessments.  George applies people centered systems and process thinking to achieve sustainable performance excellence.


“I enjoyed The Zen Approach™ To Project Management and found it thought-provoking. The points are very well-made. I would say that an extremely important lesson for me has been the notion that one should work as hard and as expertly as one can on each project (my translation of right livelihood) , whether it be research in the lab, or working with academic colleagues for a common institutional goal.”

- Peter Brophy, PhD Director, Centre for Neuroscience Research at Edinburgh University

“In my 29 years of reading project management books this one stands out. THE ZEN APPROACH™ provides excellent pause – a moment of thought before an action, and understanding that we must live with the consequences of those actions as a conscious and competent ‘Zen’ project manager.”
- Christian A. Jensen, PMP, Director, Execution Excellence Practice, Microsoft®

“The Zen approach to Project Management brings together sound wisdom, a nuts-and-bolts grasp of practicalities, and original insights. It's the Zen that's been missing in all too many of today's business books, and George Pitagorsky is the master we've needed.”
- Daniel Goleman, author Social Intelligence