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Getting Started in Project Management for Librarians - Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO) Workshop - June 7, 2016


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Whether you’re organizing an event, renovating or rearranging a space, creating a program, or implementing a grant, you’re managing a project. Project management can help you manage projects more effectively and efficiently. Learn tools and techniques for successfully planning, organizing, and administering projects. To best respond to the constantly changing library world we will be sharing principles and concepts from design thinking and agile project management.

By the end of this workshop, participants will:
Receive a basic overview of iterative and agile-like project management from a design thinking perspective
Gain knowledge to successfully manage a project cycle from start to finish through hands-on activities and exercises
Receive a project management toolkit
Learn about tools, strategies, and techniques to manage projects and teams better

Published in: Education
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Getting Started in Project Management for Librarians - Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO) Workshop - June 7, 2016

  1. 1. Ice Breaker Team Challenge 1. Look through the box on the table. In the box, you’ll find your icebreaker item (a binder clip, a paper clip, or a rubber band). 2. At your table, come up with as many uses for the item & write them on post-it notes. 3. Pair up with someone with a different item. 4. Come up with as many ways that both items can be used together & write them on post-it notes.
  2. 2. Introductions 1. Name 2. Institution/Organization 3. What do you hope to learn today?
  3. 3. What is Project Management? Project Management Institute, Inc. (PMI) defines "a project as a temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product, service, or result. The temporary nature of projects indicates a definite beginning and end. The end is reached when the project's objectives have been achieved or when the project is terminated because its objectives will not or cannot be met, or when the need for the project no longer exists.”
  4. 4. History of Project Management 1910 Gantt Chart 1950s Critical Path Method 1950s Program Evaluation & Review Technique
  5. 5. Approaches to Project Management Usability Process A nonlinear, flexible, iterative process
  6. 6. Project Manager ACTIVITY: Do a SWOT analysis of yourself as a project manager. SWOT Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities Threats What kind of skills should a project manager have?
  7. 7. “When it comes to project management, it’s the people that matter.” Thomas Lechler
  8. 8. Project Manager Qualifications Desired Skills and Experience ● MLS degree from an ALA accredited library education program ● 5+ years of progressive supervisory/management experience in a public library system ● Experience coaching, mentoring, developing and managing the performance of staff ● Excellent communication skills with people at all levels ● Demonstrated ability to apply clear and reasoned judgment and engagement with complex issues ● Strong collaboration and critical thinking skills ● Strong customer service orientation ● Excellent project management skills ● Strong technology skills
  9. 9. Project Manager Qualifications
  10. 10. Project Team “The optimal size (and composition) of teams is debated and will vary depending on the task at hand. At least one study of problem-solving in groups showed an optimal size of groups at four members. Other works estimate the optimal size between 5-12 members or a number of members that can consume two pizzas.” - Wikipedia
  11. 11. Managing Team Conflict ● Exercise power ● Avoid/Withdraw ● Call in project sponsor ● Compromise/Consensus ○ Dot-voting ○ Quaker model ● Delegate ● Solve the underlying problem, not the symptom ● Acknowledge and listen ● Agree to disagree ● Call a meeting
  12. 12. Tips on Running Effective Meetings ● Don’t be afraid to end a meeting early. ● Keep meeting small, prevent social loafing. ● Keep in mind the 2 D’s of meetings. Discuss and decide. ● Meetings with vague purposes, such as “status updates” are rarely a good use of time. ● Save communication and updates for emails. ● Throw out Robert’s Rules of Order. ● Have a designated notetaker. ● Walk and Talk. Try standing or walking meetings.
  13. 13. A Few More Tips on Running Effective Meetings ● KISS - keep it small and simple. ● Meetings can also be done over the phone or online. ● Make sure everyone is participating and call out people who are not. ● Send out an agenda beforehand and be clear about meeting objectives. ● Parking lot it. Set aside issues or topics that can’t be resolved right then. ● Make sure EVERYONE leaves the meeting with a clear task/job with deadline for next meeting.
  14. 14. Breaks are the key to productivity & more effective project management. (Let’s take a break.)
  15. 15. Choose a project to work on Launching a New Service Website Redesign Planning a Program New Signage Launching Book A Librarian Outreach Purchasing for Collection Staff Training New Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) Grant Merging Departments Designing a Children or Young Adult Section Organizing an Event
  16. 16. Did you successfully complete the project? How is the project going? What’s the project purpose, scope, and plan? What are the tasks, milestones, and priorities of the project?
  17. 17. Design Your project plan should answer questions like: What are your project goals and outcomes? Your project plan can also be used as your project pitch/elevator speech. What’s the project purpose, scope, and plan?
  18. 18. Design ● Be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time Based) ● Beware scope creep ● Schedule - backward/reverse planning ● Stakeholder analysis ● How will you evaluate success of project? ● Environmental scan ● Maintainability and sustainability ● Costs benefit analysis ● Identify risks and potential problem areas Tips, Tricks, and Lessons Learned
  19. 19. Develop What are the tasks, milestones, and priorities of the project? ACTIVITY: Prioritize using the MoSCoW method which activities and tasks need to be done in 2 months. MoSCoW method Must have o Should have Could have o Would like to have
  20. 20. Develop Tips, Tricks, and Lessons Learned ● Build in buffer time ● Describe work in # of hours ● How to deal with scope creep ● Work in beta ● Soft launch ● Prioritize using MoSCoW method
  21. 21. Analyze How is the project going? ACTIVITY: Choose one of the methods to analyze your project in progress & discuss how you would use this method.
  22. 22. Analyze Tips, Tricks, and Lessons Learned ● Keep in mind that project analysis can be done at any stage of project ● Qualitative & quantitative ● Identify problem areas ● Analyze the project itself ● Analyze the process
  23. 23. Did you successfully complete the project? DISCUSSION: How do you evaluate your project? Should we do surveys or evaluations? What kind of questions should you ask? How do you get people to fill out surveys? When is a project finished? When can you as project manager end the project? Evaluate
  24. 24. Evaluate Tips, Tricks, and Lessons Learned ● Keep a project management journal ● Outcome based evaluations ● Qualitative and quantitative ● Don’t forget to celebrate
  25. 25. Project ownership (for both project managers & project teams) is key to better project management.
  26. 26. People Interact Consultancy ~It’s about people. We work with libraries and nonprofits to implement creative solutions to effectively improve individual and organizational performance. Our objective is to enhance organizational effectiveness by focusing on the human element. Our services include impact-based evaluation, unconferences for organizational development, and leadership and career development. Presentation slides: