Ten rules for common sense program management


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Ten rules for common sense program management

  1. 1. TEN RULES FOR COMMON SENSE PROGRAM MANAGEMENT The basis of these ten rules is guided by work of Col. Lee Battle (USAF), the director of the Corona/Discover satellite system
  2. 2. Corona, first launched in 1959, was a military reconnaissance satellite operated by the CIA used for photo surveillance of the Soviet Union. The novel and movie Ice Station Zebra was based on a missing film canister from Discover, a Corona follow on vehicle. 2
  3. 3. Ten Rules of Common Sense Program 3 Management 1. Put Together The Right 6. Make The Program Team Schedule The Leading Metric 2. Execute Or Suffer The 7. Solve Problems When Consequences They Appear 3. Establish A Credible 8. Test And Verify Baseline 4. Control The Baseline 9. Communicate 5. Manage Risk 10. Deliver
  4. 4. 1. Put Together The Right Team 4  Acquire the best people possible, empower then with enough authority to do their jobs, and hold them accountable  Organize to be lean and mean  Build and maintain healthy, open, professional relationships with team members, counterparts, and suppliers
  5. 5. 2. Execute or Suffer the Consequences 5  The program manager is the “Captain of the ship”  Treat your time like it is gold  All communications must relate to program execution and coordination  You can get help on anything other than taking responsibility for executing the program
  6. 6. 3. Establish A Credible Baseline 6  An improperly baselined program can not be successfully executed  Pay attention to systems engineering, requirements analysis, management, and traceability, change control, design reviews, and test and verification planning
  7. 7. 4. Control the Baseline 7  The baseline is the lifeblood of the program  Uncontrolled changes can destroy a program  All changes impact the baseline  Do not accept changes that increase risk  Always have a prioritized set of requirements in your pocket
  8. 8. 5. Manage Risk 8  Risk never goes away on its own  Robust and proactive risk management is always required  Know the program’s risks and who owns them  Eliminating risk is not feasible  Don’t let risk management become a reporting process – use it to manage the prorgam
  9. 9. 6. Make The Program Schedule The 9 Leading Indicator  Establish an Integrated Master Schedule (IMS) and Integrated Master Plan (IMP) based on assessments of increasing program maturity  Know the critical and near-critical paths and the dependencies  Manage the critical path the resources
  10. 10. 7. Solve Problems When They Appear 10  Hit failures hard, unresolved problems will haunt the program  Prepare for problems
  11. 11. 8. Test and Verify 11  One test is worth a thousand opinions  “test as you fly” means, testing must be as close as the real thing as possible  Make decisions based on real data
  12. 12. 9. Communicate 12  Communication is more important than organizing  Information is power  Take control of the reporting process  Employ meetings with well defined agendas
  13. 13. 10. Deliver 13  It’s all about delivering the needed capabilities to the user  Each requirement and deliverable must be tied to the Concept of Operations (ConOps)  Getting something into the users hands early provides feedback for the next block, spiral or iteration