Project Management for the Accidental Project Manager

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Many people begin their project management career by accident — they're thrown into a PM situation without adequate experience and/or training and are forced to either sink or swim. Fortunately, most eventually swim (or at least dog paddle), but for many, it wasn't pretty at first!

This briefing reviews those critical few things that all professionals need to know before undertaking their first real PM assignment. Most project management is rooted in common sense. This discussion puts that common sense into an efficient framework that provides the basics, as well as, discusses a few key tools/templates to get jump started.

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Project Management for the Accidental Project Manager

  1. 1. Project Management for the Accidental Project Manager Conducted by Gary Chin, PMP
  2. 2. Objectives   Learn the critical few concepts you need to know to for PM success   Start building the PM Toolbox that will simplify the job and increase your productivity 2
  3. 3. Introductions   Gary Chin –  Project Management Consultant & Trainer –  XO Consulting & Training –  gchin@xocp.com   ClearVue-360 (www.clearvuepm.com) –  This is the primary software I recommend for accidental project managers as it covers the entire project life-cycle (a full PM tool box in one application) and it’s relatively easy to use/implement. 3
  4. 4. Today’s Agenda   The Accidental Project Manager   Core PM Concepts   Setting-up success at the start   Project triangle   Sequencing   Risks   Tracking/Reporting   PM Tool Box   Charter   List Management   Tasks   Risks   Action Items   Etc. 4
  5. 5. Are you an Accidental Project Manager?   Accidental Project Manager, n. a business professional where project management is a secondary responsibility, but who is asked to manage important corporate projects nonetheless. 5
  6. 6. Are you an Accidental Project Manager?   Accidental Project Manager, n. a business professional where project management is a secondary responsibility, but who is asked to manage important corporate projects nonetheless.   Are you expected to manage projects in addition to your “real” work? 6
  7. 7. Quick Primer in Project Management Initiate Plan Execute Close 7
  8. 8. Quick Primer in Project Management What Initiate Plan Execute Close 8
  9. 9. Quick Primer in Project Management How long, What How much Initiate Plan Execute Close 9
  10. 10. Quick Primer in Project Management How long, Implement, What How much Adjust Initiate Plan Execute Close 10
  11. 11. Quick Primer in Project Management How long, Implement, How did What How much Adjust we do Initiate Plan Execute Close 11
  12. 12. Why and Where Projects Fail Initiate Plan Execute Close Most problems discovered here 12
  13. 13. Why and Where Projects Fail Initiate Plan Execute Close Most problems Most problems created here discovered here 13
  14. 14. Why and Where Projects Fail Initiate Plan Execute Close Most problems Most problems created here discovered here   Projects Fail at the beginning, not the End! 14
  15. 15. Customer’s have Problems   Your customer is a person or organization with an unmet need and/or problem. 15
  16. 16. Customer’s have Problems   Your customer is a person or organization with an unmet need and/or problem. 1 Know who your customer is 16
  17. 17. Customer’s have Problems   Your customer is a person or organization with an unmet need and/or problem. 1 Know who your customer is 2 Understand the customer’s problem 17
  18. 18. Definition of a “Project” Time Frame   “A temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product, service or result…” - PMI Deliverable 18
  19. 19. Definition of a “Project” Time Frame   “A temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product, service or result…” - PMI Deliverable 3 Projects create Deliverables (what) 19
  20. 20. Deliverable   A tangible output of the project.   Leads to the resolution of the Customer’s problem   Measured at completion of the project.   In order to be measured, the deliverable must be well defined (very specific) 20
  21. 21. Deliverables vs. Benefits   Deliverable – A tangible output of the project. Measured at completion of the project. 21
  22. 22. Deliverables vs. Benefits   Deliverable – A tangible output of the project. Measured at completion of the project.   Benefit – A desired outcome of the project. Measured after completion of the project. 22
  23. 23. Deliverables vs. Benefits   Deliverable – A tangible output of the project. Measured at completion of the project.   Benefit – A desired outcome of the project. Measured after completion of the project. 4 Deliverables are NOT the same as Benefits 23
  24. 24. Project Charter Key   A short document created early in the project that provides a high-level definition of the project.   Used to get key stakeholders synchronized and aligned on the project. 24
  25. 25. Project Charter Key   Problem Statement   Overview/Approach   Deliverables   Assumptions   Stakeholders 25
  26. 26. Charter – Problem Statement   Problem Statement – Describes the pain and why it will go away after this project. The basis of the business case.   Overview/Approach   Deliverables   Assumptions   Stakeholders 26
  27. 27. Charter – Overview/Approach   Problem Statement – Describes the pain and why it will go away after this project. The basis of the business case.   Overview/Approach – An executive summary including sequence of major activities.   Deliverables   Assumptions   Stakeholders 27
  28. 28. Charter – Deliverables   Problem Statement – Describes the pain and why it will go away after this project. The basis of the business case.   Overview/Approach – An executive summary including sequence of major activities.   Deliverables – The tangible outputs that will be created.   Assumptions   Stakeholders 28
  29. 29. Charter – Assumptions   Problem Statement – Describes the pain and why it will go away after this project. The basis of the business case.   Overview/Approach – An executive summary including sequence of major activities.   Deliverables – The tangible outputs that will be created.   Assumptions – Something taken as fact that isn’t proven to be so.   Stakeholders 29
  30. 30. Charter – Stakeholders   Problem Statement – Describes the pain and why it will go away after this project. The basis of the business case.   Overview/Approach – An executive summary including sequence of major activities.   Deliverables – The tangible outputs that will be created.   Assumptions – Something taken as fact that isn’t proven to be so.   Stakeholders – Those who benefit, contribute to, are impacted by the project 30
  31. 31. Project Triangle Dominant characteristics of projects Scope 31
  32. 32. Scope   The work (tasks) required to create the deliverable. Task Task Task Task Task Task A B C D E F 5 Scope = the tasks needed to create the Deliverable 32
  33. 33. Sequence   Answer this question for each task:   “What task(s) must be completed before I can perform this task?”   Answering this question determines task predecessors Task Task B D Task Task Task Start End A C F Task E 33
  34. 34. Estimate   Estimate the calendar duration for each task. Task Task B (2) D (3) Task Task Task Start End A (3) C (3) F (1) Task E (4) 34
  35. 35. Create a Schedule Key A B D C E F You only need 3 things to create a schedule: tasks, 6 durations, predecessors 35
  36. 36. Risks   Future events or conditions that may have a positive or negative impact on project scope, schedule, or budget. - PMI 36
  37. 37. Risk Management Key 1.  Identify 2.  Assess 3.  Prioritize 4.  Respond
  38. 38. Identify Risks 1.  Identify—Answer the question: “What could go wrong with this project?” 2.  Assess 3.  Prioritize 4.  Respond
  39. 39. Assess the Risks 1.  Identify—Answer the question: “What could go wrong with this project?” 2.  Assess—Estimate the probability and the impact of the risks High 3.  Prioritize Impact Med 4.  Respond Low Low Med High Probability
  40. 40. Prioritize the Risks 1.  Identify—Answer the question: “What could go wrong with this project?” 2.  Assess—Estimate the probability and the impact of the risks High 3.  Prioritize—Rank based on P & I Impact Med 4.  Respond Low Low Med High Probability
  41. 41. Respond to the Risks 1.  Identify—Answer the question: “What could go wrong with this project?” 2.  Assess—Estimate the probability and the impact of the risks 3.  Prioritize—Rank based on P & I 4.  Respond—Determine how you will address the risks with the highest rank and update your plan accordingly
  42. 42. Quick Review Status Collection / Charter Schedule Status Reports Initiate Plan Execute Close   Customer   Tasks   Problem   Predecessors   Deliverable   Estimates   Timeline   Risks 42
  43. 43. Status Collection   3 things to track: 1.  Schedule (tasks) 2.  Action Items 3.  Issues 43
  44. 44. Status Collection   3 things to track: 1.  Schedule (tasks) – Done or not done? 2.  Action Items 3.  Issues 44
  45. 45. Status Collection   3 things to track: 1.  Schedule (tasks) – Done or not done? 2.  Action Items – Activities too small to be part of the schedule. 3.  Issues 45
  46. 46. Status Collection   3 things to track: 1.  Schedule (tasks) – Done or not done? 2.  Action Items – Activities too small to be part of the schedule. 3.  Issues – Problems happening now! 46
  47. 47. Status Reporting Key   3 things to report: 1.  The stuff you tracked 2.  Assessment 3.  Recommendations 47
  48. 48. Status Reporting Key   3 things to report: 1.  The stuff you tracked – Schedule, action items, issues 2.  Assessment 3.  Recommendations 48
  49. 49. Reporting   3 things to report: 1.  The stuff you tracked - Schedule, action items, issues 2.  Assessment – Your interpretation of the data 3.  Recommendations 49
  50. 50. Reporting   3 things to report: 1.  The stuff you tracked - Schedule, action items, issues 2.  Assessment – Your interpretation of the data 3.  Recommendations – What you think the team, management, and/or you should do 50
  51. 51. Summary 1.  Know who your customer is 2.  Understand their problem 3.  Identify the deliverable that will make the problem go away 4.  Use a Charter to get key stakeholders aligned 5.  Define the tasks necessary to create the deliverable 6.  Determine task predecessors and estimate durations 7.  Create a schedule 8.  Manage your risks 9.  Track task completion, action items, and issues 10. Report on tasks, action items, issues, your assessment, and your recommendations 51
  52. 52. Questions 52

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