10 Ways to Increase Your Project's Success


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  • Project management is used to bridge the gap between functional units and layers of management.
  • Bob knows the risks ahead of time and responds to risk as soon as risk is observed.Also, consider positive risk (opportunities)
  • After reading The Night Lives On by Walter LordDeemed unsinkable by one of the engineersNot enough life rafts (1/3 to ¼) but better than industry standardsToo fast through the ice fieldInsufficient testing by the captain before maiden voyageBefore going into case studies note the availability of government projects (gov is not the only incompetent organization)Note the case studies are simplified and offer one perspective because many issues existed
  • 1989 Construction begins1990 Feasibility study found the baggage handling system was not feasbible1991 United Airlines contracted with BAE Systems to construct automated system for their concourse1991 DIA requests for full system resulted in only three bids; all rejected1992 DIA recruited BAE to build complete system1992 Budget cuts, expanded system for larger luggage (skis), changes to scope, etc.1993 Target missed, again, again, etc.1994 DIA demo disaster with BAE approval (smashed totes, clothes torn out, etc)1995 Airport opened without complete automated systemFinding: don’t let the system become the critical path16 months late at $1.1M per day (maintenance and lost revenue)
  • Virtual Case File and Communications upgrade 20009/11 required better case integrationMany restarts after many vendors4 CIOs and PM added only near the end of the project4/2005 project cancelled and replaced with Sentinal projectFinished internallyAfter 12 years with a cost of $621 million dollarsNo adherence to fixed budget, schedule, or scope (constant revisions)No strategic plan and continual funding and time
  • Bid won in late 1960s on only sketches (very little definition)Government reduced accountability and questions by breaking project down into smaller projects (building, roof, interior)Politics drove an initial low budget of $7M and drove cost-cutting measures, change in direction, and loss of contractorAfter 14 years, project was completed at a cost of $102M (1400% over budget)
  • 10 Ways to Increase Your Project's Success

    1. 1. 10WAYSTO INCREASE YOUR PROJECT’S SUCCESS Project Management Workshop Brandon Olson, PhD
    2. 2. Purpose •Defineprojects and project management •Evaluate highly visible failed projects •Describe the purpose of risk management •Identify common sources of project failure •Develop methods to address common failures
    3. 3. Agenda • Definitions • Project Management • Risk Management • Project Failures • Sources of Project Failures
    4. 4. Agenda •Definitions • Project Management • Risk Management • Project Failures • Sources of Project Failures
    5. 5. Definitions of Project Management • "...a complex, non-routine, one-time effort limited by time, budget, resources, and performance specifications designed to meet customer needs (Gray & Larson, 2008) • "...a temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product, service, or result.“ (PMI, 2008) One-Time
    6. 6. Project Characteristics Kerzner, 2009 Specific Objective with Defined Specifications Defined Start and End Dates Funding Limitations Consume Human and Nonhuman Resources Multiple Disciplines
    7. 7. Operations vs. Projects Operations Projects Taking notes in class Writing a research paper Recording sales into ledger Setting up sales kiosk for convention Practicing a musical instrument Writing a new piece of music Manufacturing the iPhone Designing the new OS Attaching sales tags to merchandise Implementing a new RFID system Adapted from Gray & Larson, 2008
    8. 8. Agenda • Definitions •Project Management • Risk Management • Project Failures • Sources of Project Failures
    9. 9. Purpose of Project Management Project ManagementA B Change
    10. 10. Project Sources Increase Revenue (expand services) Reduce Expenses Directive New product/services Market Expansion Increased Scalability Process Improvement Decision Making Government Compliance Self-Imposed Competitive Standards
    11. 11. Why Projects? Operational Islands
    12. 12. Project Management Scope TimeCost Project Manager
    13. 13. Project Success • Delivered 100% functionality • On time • Within Budget
    14. 14. ProjectTeam and Stakeholders Project Champion Project Owner/Sponsor (client) Project Manager ProjectTeam (Multidisciplinary Specialists) Customers (Recipients of Outcomes)
    15. 15. Agenda • Definitions • Project Management •Risk Management • Project Failures • Sources of Project Failures
    16. 16. Risk Management
    17. 17. Looking for Risk • Variables • Scope • Budget • Schedule • ProjectTeam • Stakeholders • Internal Events and Environment • External Events and Environment
    18. 18. Risk Register Uncertainty Consequences Potential Time Performance Level No Signature Project on hold until client signs 2% 3% 0% UPS strike Product materials cannot be shipped to product site and must be hand delivered 25% 50% 10% Current development server crashes again All new development and modifications are halted until server can be replaced 75% 25% 80% High Risk Moderate Risk Low Risk
    19. 19. Contingency Planning Event Affect on Project ActionsTaken UPS strike Delays in shipping products to sites Fleet vehicles are available and project team can deliver products to individual sites. Server Crash Stoppage of work in the test and development environments New server has been ordered and the costs will be covered by the IT department.
    20. 20. Agenda • Definitions • Project Management • Risk Management •Project Failures • Sources of Project Failures
    21. 21. “What can possibly go wrong with my project?”
    22. 22. Project Case #1
    23. 23. Project Case #2
    24. 24. Project Case #3
    25. 25. Agenda • Definitions • Project Management • Risk Management • Project Failures •Sources of Project Failures
    26. 26. Sources of Project Failures 1. Project Champion 2. Process Shortcuts 3. Expectations Management 4. Variable Lock-In 5. EstimatingTechniques 6. Optimism 7. Resource Assumptions 8. People Management 9. Adapting to Change 10. Insufficient Resources Adapted fromWhitten & Bentley, 2007
    27. 27. Source 1: Project Champion • Project is approved without a champion • Champion leaves the organization • Champion loses interest in the project Effect Project ActionsTaken
    28. 28. Source 2: Process Shortcuts • Skipping steps in the selected processes • Incomplete or portly executed processes • Ignore process altogether Effect Project ActionsTaken
    29. 29. Source 2: Expectations Management • Unknown or ambiguous deliverables / goals • Scope / Feature Creep • Fluid requirements Effect Project ActionsTaken
    30. 30. Source 4:Variable Lock-In • Committing to initial estimates • Estimates established without thorough analysis • Estimates do not consider recent changes Effect Project ActionsTaken
    31. 31. Source 5: EstimatingTechniques • Estimates are influenced by internal/external pressures • Estimates are based on uneducated estimates • Estimates are based on padded hours Effect Project ActionsTaken
    32. 32. Source 6: Optimism • Project team does not evaluate affect of issues and risks • Project team discounts true affect of issues and risks • Project team assumes issues or time can be addressed later Effect Project ActionsTaken
    33. 33. Source 7: Resource Assumptions • Mythical Man Month (Brooks, 1975) • Adding resources reduced project duration • 2x resources reduces schedule by 50% Effect Project ActionsTaken
    34. 34. Source 8: People Management • Project managers promoted without development • Project managers value tasks over managing team • Project managers value tasks over communications Effect Project ActionsTaken
    35. 35. Source 9: Adapting to Change • Change in organizational priorities • Change to organizational processes • Change in external environment Effect Project ActionsTaken
    36. 36. Source 10: Insufficient Resources • Insufficient funding or material resources • Insufficient staff or missing skill sets • Insufficient experience Effect Project ActionsTaken
    37. 37. Monitor and Control Evaluate Progress Identify Risks Assess Risks Develop Plans Execute Plans Communicate
    38. 38. References • Brooks, F. (1975). The mythical man-month. Reading, PA: Addison-Wesley. • Gale, S. (2011). Failure rates finally drop. PM Network, 25(8), 10-11. • Gale, S. (2013, April). Finding the competitive edge. PM Network, 27(4), 39-43. • Gray, C.F., & Larson, E.W. (2008). Project management:The managerial process (4th ed.). Boston, MA: McGraw Hill. • Kerzner, H. (2009). Project management: A systems approach to planning, scheduling, and controlling. NewYork, NY: Wiley. • Project Management Institute (2008). A guide to the project management body of knowledge (4th ed.). Newtown Square: PA:Author. • Whitten, J.L., & Bentley, L.D. (2007). Systems analysis and design methods (7th ed.). Boston, MA: McGrawHill /Irwin. http://faculty.css.edu/bolson1/presentations/ProjectSuccess.pdf