PDF Project Management In A Week: How To Manage A Project In Seven Simple Steps

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It came about in when the methodology got a little facelift. PRINCE2 is one of the process-oriented waterfall project management methodologies that emphasizes clear steps and well-defined responsibilities. PRINCE2 places heavy emphasis on planning, business justification, cost analysis, and risk mitigation, and is an incredibly thorough framework for running large and predictable enterprise projects.

Pros: PRINCE2 is the most widely practiced project management methodology in the world, which means that a lot of people are familiar with it, know how it works, and understand its terminology. So many PMP jokes…so little time. It applies universal standards to the Waterfall method and is a very thorough approach to managing large-scale projects. It can also be helpful for large enterprises who want all departments, or even companies, to work in one standardized way, using the same vocabulary and best practices.

Are you a small agency who works at a rapid pace? Is your team just looking for a way to better sync and stay organized? PMBOK is likely too cumbersome, complicated, and clunky for you. Bottom line: If you work as a project manager, PMP is a globally acknowledged certification that will probably enhance your resume and may even lead to a pay bump.

Change Management In A Week : Mike Bourne :

The Scrum Master acts as a facilitator whose job is to clear away obstacles and help the team work more efficiently. Manage your sprint iteration planning with our scrum management templates. Pros: This is great for creative projects where goals can be modified midway.

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For many teams these days, change is a given. The Scrum method allows them to stay agile hence the name and make changes midway through without derailing the entire project. Cons: See all of the criticisms we made about Agile. Muda is defined as any process that does not add value, and the original Lean philosophy outlines seven types of muda: transport; inventory; motion; waiting; overproduction; overprocessing; and defects.

Mura is the inconsistency and unevenness in your workload that causes waste. For example, when you work like mad during certain parts of the month and then things are dead at other times. Finally, muri is all the unreasonable burdens that are imposed on people that cause stress and burnout. Muri qualifies as its own form of waste, and is directly linked to the daily BS that wastes your time—muda—and the unpredictability and chaos of your day-to-day—mura. Pros of Lean: Lean is easy to follow if you work in a manufacturing or production environment delivering a physical product, such as a Toyota car.

Work on improving that weak point, and your entire operation will be faster, less wasteful, and more profitable. The original Lean philosophy only applies to physical manufacturing, but its tenets have been extrapolated into more modern methodologies, such as Lean Startup. Many people even consider Lean to be the godfather of Agile and Scrum.

Efficiency FTW! Speaking of Lean offshoots, Kanban is one of them. A Kanban board is divided into several different columns that represent stages in your workflow. You then represent work via cards or sticky notes, moving them from left to right as they progress through your workflow. Kanban is essentially a more conceptual assembly line, allowing you to visually evaluate points of inefficiency: where are sticky notes building up? Like Agile, Kanban was specifically developed for software development, but it can be applied to basically any workflow that follows a predictable process.

Pros : People love Kanban for its simplicity and flexibility. Reprioritizing and changing course is as simple as moving some sticky cards around. Cons: Kanban helps you manage a steady stream of to-dos, which is helpful only for the realm of task management. But it has its limits, and if your day-to-day involves any level of complexity or substantial change, the Kanban method is likely to crumble.

The list we provided above is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of types of project management methodologies. But there are a few questions you can ask yourself that might be helpful:. No one ever said project management methodologies were sexy or exciting, but behind all the dry acronyms and mind-numbing jargon are human experiences we can all relate to: the stress of an upcoming deadline.

The frustration of miscommunicating with other people. The rush of completing a huge project. These issues are at the core of every project management methodology, and are also why we do what we do: to simplify the way your team works. Whatever method you choose, chances are you can implement it in monday. Give it a shot and see how it works for you:. Created with Sketch. Some fishbone diagrams can become very complex indeed, which is common in specialised quality management areas, especially where systems are computerised.

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A critical path analysis is normally shown as a flow diagram, whose format is linear organised in a line , and specifically a time-line. PERT is not normally relevant when the project is simple, but when it is of considerable size and complexity - particularly when timings and interdependency issues are crucial - they can benefit from the detailed analysis enabled by PERT methods.

PERT analysis commonly feeds into Critical Path Analysis and to other broader management systems, such as those mentioned here. Critical Path Analysis flow diagrams are very good for showing interdependent factors whose timings overlap or coincide. They also enable a plan to be scheduled according to a timescale. Critical Path Analysis flow diagrams also enable costings and budgeting, although not quite as easily as Gantt charts below , and they also help planners to identify causal elements, although not quite so easily as fishbone diagrams below.

This is how to create a Critical Path Analysis. As an example, the project is a simple one - making a fried breakfast. Assemble crockery and utensils, assemble ingredients, prepare equipment, make toast, fry sausages and eggs, grill bacon and tomatoes, lay table, warm plates, serve. Note that some of these activities must happen in parallel - and crucially they are interdependent.

That is to say, if you tried to make a fried breakfast by doing one task at a time, and one after the other, things would go wrong. Certain tasks must be started before others, and certain tasks must be completed in order for others to begin. The plates need to be warming while other activities are going on.

The toast needs to be toasting while the sausages are frying, and at the same time the bacon and sausages are under the grill. The eggs need to be fried last. A Critical Path Analysis is a diagrammatical representation of what needs doing and when. Timescales and costs can be applied to each activity and resource.

Here's the Critical Path Analysis for making a fried breakfast:. This Critical Path Analysis example below shows just a few activities over a few minutes. Normal business projects would see the analysis extending several times wider than this example, and the time line would be based on weeks or months. It is possible to use MS Excel or a similar spreadsheet to create a Critical Path Analysis, which allows financial totals and time totals to be planned and tracked.

Project Planning Steps - How to Plan a Project

Various specialised project management software enable the same thing. Gantt Charts commonly wrongly called gant charts are extremely useful project management tools. The Gantt Chart is named after US engineer and consultant Henry Gantt who devised the technique in the s.

Every activity has a separate line. Create a timeline for the duration of the project the breakfast example shows minutes, but normally you would use weeks, or for very big long-term projects, months. You can colour code the time blocks to denote the type of activity for example, intense, watching briefly, directly managed, delegated and left-to-run, etc. You can schedule review and insert breakpoints. At the end of each line you can show as many cost columns for the activities as you need. The breakfast example shows just the capital cost of the consumable items and a revenue cost for labour and fuel.

A Gantt chart like this can be used to keep track of progress for each activity and how the costs are running. You can move the time blocks around to report on actuals versus planned, and to re-schedule, and to create new plan updates. Costs columns can show plan and actuals and variances, and calculate whatever totals, averages, ratios, etc.

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Gantt Charts are probably the most flexible and useful of all project management tools, but remember they do not very easily or obviously show the importance and inter-dependence of related parallel activities, and they won't obviously show the necessity to complete one task before another can begin, as a Critical Path Analysis will do, so you may need both tools, especially at the planning stage, and almost certainly for large complex projects.

Project planning tools naturally become used also for subsequent project reporting, presentations, etc. It is an area of high innovation, with lots of scope for improvement and development. Many organizations develop or specify particular computerised tools, so it's a good idea to seek local relevant advice and examples of best practice before deciding the best computerised project management system s for your own situation. I am grateful to I Kerr who wrote Oct : " Indeed GanttProject seems to be excellent free software. I've not tested it fully so would appreciate further reports about it.

For projects involving more than petty cash you'll probably need a spreadsheet to plan and report planned and actual expenditure.

Overview of coming up with a personal time management plan

Use MSExcel or similar. Financial accounting for small projects can sometimes be managed using the project's Gantt Chart. Large projects are likely to require some sort of dedicated accounting system, although conceivably Gantt Charts and financial management accounts can easily be administered within a spreadsheet system given sufficient expertise. If you don't know how to put together a basic financial plan, get some help from someone who does, and make sure you bring a good friendly, flexible financial person into your team - it's a key function of project management, and if you can't manage the financial processes your self you need to be able to rely completely on whoever does it for you.

The spreadsheet must enable you to plan, administer and report the detailed finances of your project. Create a cost line for main expenditure activity, and break this down into individual elements. Create a system for allocating incoming invoices to the correct activities your bought-ledger people won't know unless you tell them , and showing when the costs hit the project account. Establish clear payment terms with all suppliers and stick to them. Projects develop problems when team members get dissatisfied; rest assured, non- or late-payment is a primary cause of dissatisfaction.

Planning for and anticipating the unforeseen, or the possibility that things may not go as expected, is called 'contingency planning'. Contingency planning is vital in any task when results and outcomes cannot be absolutely guaranteed. Often a contingency budget needs to be planned as there are usually costs associated. Contingency planning is about preparing fall-back actions, and making sure that leeway for time, activity and resource exists to rectify or replace first-choice plans.