Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Project Management Made Easy

It seems everyone I know these days is a project manager of some stripe. May be they have their PMP (Project Management Professional certification) and maybe they don't. Sometimes they use excel to keep track of things and other times it's a FileMaker or Access database. The pros run straight to Microsoft Project and get their Gantt chart on.

It all comes down to simple moves really:
  1. Have a plan.
  2. Confirm the details & document.
  3. Build a realistic time line of activities.
  4. Kick off your project with all stakeholders involved.
  1. Hold people accountable for their part(s).
  2. Report on status regularly.
  3. Make sure what is being done are the right things. Do that by asking a lot of questions.
  4. Ask more questions. Make sure you understand all of the "whys".
  5. Use problem solving & facilitation skills to ensure progress.
  6. Celebrate when finished.
  7. Thank everyone involved personally & specifically.
That's it. Sure, we could discuss scope expansion and other things that might blow up the project, but really it's all handled the same way - communicate. Get the details, assess the impact, get approval (or not) and add the new information into your plan (or not).

And for me, when all else fails, I remind myself of the right moves by going to the men and women with the "Right Stuff," NASA because let's face it, I don't need to reinvent the wheel - I got projects to do!

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