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Project management Resources

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Wednesday, 01 May 2013 07:50

How Important is Adoption for a PMO?

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What makes a successful PMO? A great deal of hard work? Definitely. But there are some other ingredients in that “special sauce” that enables a PMO to succeed. Let’s explore. A few years ago Jack Welsh of GE fame lead a keynote speech on large programs. He was presenting to the business leaders of some of the largest enterprises in the world. The speech began something like this:“If you can’t get top management to support your program, don’t even bother. Don’t even waste your time.” Why did Jack say that? Because to him, adoption is so important that a program…
During the Q and A following my recent webinar, Offsite and On Board, most questions pertained to challenges around people multitasking during conference calls and online meetings. Evidence of people multitasking during virtual meetings includes the tap-tap-tap of keyboarding, silence when asking for input from someone, and the steady drip of “Could you repeat that please?” from attendees. I have good news and bad news to consider before exploring possible strategies for dealing with the multitaskers. First, the good news: Those of you who struggle with virtual team members multitasking during conference calls and online meetings can stop worrying about…
Wednesday, 24 April 2013 08:21

Project Nightmares - Gordon Ramsay to the Rescue!

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I am a huge Gordon Ramsay fan; from Kitchen Nightmares, to Hell's Kitchen, across-the-board Ramsay is both an entertainer and expert in his field. The magic he works turning around restaurants is amazing. If you spend any time watching Ramsay, and actually listening to him – which people forget to do – he clearly knows what he is talking about in the restaurant business. He has success around the world, is a proven leader, and people should be honored to work with him. Recently, I was watching an episode of FOX's Kitchen Nightmares,(Mauk, Hayden T.,(Senior Producer), Raigel, Scott (Producer),(2013) Kitchen…
In the first article in this three-part series I described some of the reasons why estimates often deviate wildly from reality, and I introduced an effective technique for group estimation called Wideband Delphi (see Figure 1). This article continues the description of Wideband Delphi, showing how the individual preparation and estimation meeting steps are carried out. Individual Preparation Let’s assume you wish to estimate the total amount of work effort (typically expressed in labor hours) needed to complete a certain project. The estimation process begins with each participant independently developing an initial list of the tasks that will have to…
Wednesday, 17 April 2013 08:02

GEM: The Most Crucial Factors for Project Success

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Three crucial factors for project success Successful projects are built upon many factors. Among them, three are most crucial. They are like the pillars of a solid foundation upon which building successful projects becomes possible. Missing these three vital factors, project success would be any project manager’s pie in the sky. GEM is the foundation built by the three most vital success factors Having all success factors working in harmony for any project is not practical, if not impossible, and project managers typically have to cope with what they don’t have when striving for successes. To conquer project perils like…
Wednesday, 17 April 2013 07:51

Use Sociocracy to Scale Agile Organizationally

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We are at an important juncture in the evolution of product delivery. Agile methodologies have lost sight of some of the core values, and not enough people are using social technology to fully realize Agile’s potential. Agile, once hailed as the answer to development woes, has become a source of contention and debate. Organizations with larger, more complex projects struggle to adopt Agile. Some organizations won’t even try due to formal processes designed to ensure the projects meet regulations, follow contracts and avoid costly mistakes. This is especially true in industries where the final product includes hardware that can’t easily…
Major technical projects, like modern warfare, have become increasingly complex as they become more sophisticated. As the requirements involve more systems and departments, how do you plan for the seemingly unforeseeable? Dr. Roy Gardner, Director of Psycle, investigates. Military staff procedures have changed immeasurably in the last 100 years. With the increasing complexity of warfare involving previously disparate disciplines working in synchronization, military leaders have had to devolve responsibility for staff procedures, decision-making and planning. The same is true for major technical builds. It is no longer possible for one person to make all the decisions about what is best…
Wednesday, 03 April 2013 07:53

The Risks of Project Risk Management

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Project risk management is in itself a rather risky undertaking and the communication of project risk is in need of a major overhaul. In this perspective, Nigel Chisnall considers the current quality of risk communication and examines metaphorical approaches to better visualise project risk when navigating through the project route. Examples of major contracts diverted at the last moment Otherwise viable multi-million dollar ICT Infrastructure projects changed direction at the last moment will impact not only on time, cost and quality, but also the reputation of the project team. A large firm having completed a yearlong tender process for a…
When I was a software developer I once received a phone call from my manager. “Got an hour?” he asked. My manager had received what seemed to be a trivial request from one of our customers. However, by the time I had understood the customer’s real need and wrote a small application to satisfy it, I had devoted 100 hours to this project. Not all project estimates are off by a factor of 100 but this is a striking example that it is indeed possible to go that far wrong. This three-part series (adapted from my book Practical Project Initiation:…
Conventional wisdom dictates that project manager should lead the project for the whole duration of the project - since creation of the charter and up until closing phase is complete. Usually this is the case. However, there are times when original project manager has to leave the project and new person is assigned to manage and control the resources. This can be a breaking point. Schedules can potentially slip because of the learning curve project manager has to go through to catch up, especially when project is well into the execution phase. Every project is different, but there are five…