You can be the most talented and organized project manager there ever was, but never underestimate how much a talented business analyst brings to the table on your technical projects. They are essential for success, in my opinion. With a great BA in place you get better requirements documented, have better oversight of the technical development team on the project, gain valuable assistance on the daily interaction with the project customer, and are virtually guaranteed that user acceptance testing will be pulled off with as few glitches as possible...
Please take about 5 seconds and go to this link and vote for my friend and colleague, Janet Attard (CEO of BusinessKnowHow and Attard Communications) for the Small Business Influencer 2015 award. She runs a great site of expert advice for small and medium sized businesses and she is very deserving of being nominated for the Small Business Influencer 2015 award. It's as easy as clicking on the link and clicking on the "vote" button...truly just 5 seconds. (she did not ask me to promote her, but I would appreciate your vote). Thanks!
Please place your vote for Ms. Attard at the following link...thank you!
- Brad Egeland
Your CEO, your CIO, your CTO, etc. all need to be concerned about the forward advancement of the company. I get that. But in the project management world, the customer is everything. And customer satisfaction is everything. We have our ways of doing things, and the profitability of our project is important as well is the revenue we generate through add-on work like change orders. But customer satisfaction is critical – and that’s where there can be a disconnect between project management and our C-level leadership. Maybe the CEO should become a project manager for a week. They might get it then.
The PM infrastructure is important to the project client.
How we run our projects is important to our project clients. What I mean here is consistent delivery, consistent methodology, and consistent tools. Consistency breeds customer confidence and satisfaction. That’s why we need a project management infrastructure and the C-level leadership needs to understand and support that. The PM infrastructure needs their buy-in and support to be successful and ultimately it is incredibly important to the organization that the projects are successful whether the CEO and staff realize it on a daily basis or not. They will care very much in the long run...
Not every organization needs a project management office (PMO) – I realize that. And I also know that not all project management offices work or end up serving any good purpose at all. I’ve seen or been a part of several that have failed for various reasons. I’m not a PMO expert, but I have created one from scratch on my own and helped start two others that did withstand the test of time and growing pains, so I have at least some successful PMO creation experience under my belt.
First, is it worth it?
PMOs are not necessarily best option for smaller organizations that aren’t likely to require lots of structured project management processes. It’s always good to have some standard practices and policies in place, but if your company doesn’t have the flow of project dollars going through the organization to warrant it, then spending the money to actually set up a structured PMO and stock it with several experienced project managers may prove to be both a waste of time and a waste of money...
Planning is a chore. I get that. And believe me, I struggle with chores daily – but it’s a way of life if you want to live an organized productive life. The same is true with the projects that we run. If we want to have productive, organized and successful projects, then we can’t run them on luck and shoot from the hip throughout the engagement.
Upfront project planning is one of the most critical elements of the project. If not enough time is spent really laying out the project, understanding requirements, asking the right questions, and planning the work, then your project is likely doomed to fail. But often it’s that planning time that is looked upon as wasteful, isn’t it?...
In project management, unfortunately, failure is a way of life. You’ll never realize 100% success on your projects. In fact, you’ll likely never run a project that is 100% successful. While we like to talk about the project successes out there…and we often do talk about best practices, how to succeed and what ‘x’ number of steps might guarantee success (which can never really be true), the reality is that we must also talk about the failures and what we can learn from them so we turn today’s failures into tomorrow’s success stories.
What we need to do is learn as much as we can from history so that it doesn’t repeat itself. We need to make the bad project situations as we move forward and manage another project tomorrow, the next day and the next day. Right?...
How many of us have inherited a project in mid-stream? Show of hands? Everyone? Sounds about right. If you haven't yet...you will. And, much like buying a used car, there will be surprises. The question is, did you inherit something in decent working order or did you inherit a lemon?
Sometimes you can tell by the reason the previous project manager gave up the reins to the project. If he left the company against his will, then you can probably assume it will be a mess. If he left for a better job at another company or left the project for one that he was specifically needed on (had a good history with the client or had a skill set that was needed by the new project), then you can likely assume it will be in decent shape when you take it over...
Happy with project management but looking to advance your career. No problem - you and just about everyone else in the workplace are looking to do the same. The key, of course, is to stand out. I realize that's easier said than done, but there are good ways to do it. And there are wrong ways to do it, too...as with just about everything else in life. For now, let's focus first on the right ways...
Author: Brad Egeland