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Project Management Blog

 We have all been on projects where an understanding different stakeholder groups becomes a ‘touchy-feely’ process.  You have a gut feel for their tolerance for change, commitment, ability to influence and what they view as important.  Most of the time we are wrong but if we had some real data for these areas, then we could establish effective communications and begin to understand what challenges faced us during our project time line.

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The creation of a Project Scope Statement doesn’t need to be a daunting task. Through the use of collaborative decision making and facilitated meetings techniques, it is realistic to build the components of the scope statement while gaining alignment from all project stakeholders in as few as two (2) days. The alignment gained from this upfront scoping effort will form the foundation for success throughout the remainder of the project. The key to this dynamic activity is effective planning and execution of a Project Scope Facilitate Meeting, using collaborative JAD techniques, to build the necessary scope outputs for a project.

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scopeThrough our experiences working with project teams in many industries on hundreds of projects, we come to recognize a common pattern. Although Project Managers and project teams understand the theory and value of developing a Project Scope Statement, many do not have workable tools, techniques or processes for creating a Scope Statement. We have encountered Project Managers who have attempted to write the Project Scope Statement on their own or assigned this effort to a team member. Often, they move forward with a scope statement completed by one person and then route this scope statement to other stakeholders seeking input, buy-in, or approval. This process can take weeks and usually results in missing portions of key information needed to effectively manage scope on the project. More alarming to the overall project success is that there is minimal if any real buy-in and alignment on the scope of the project. In this situation, Project Managers are faced with spending too much time throughout the project trying to identify and manage scope creep due to unclear and uncommunicated project boundaries.  The creation of a Project Scope Statement doesn’t need to be a daunting task. This paper illustrates how to build the scope statement while gaining alignment from all project stakeholders in as few as two (2) days. The alignment gained from this upfront scoping effort will form the foundation for success throughout the remainder of the project. The key to this dynamic activity is effective planning and execution of a Project Scope Facilitate Meeting, using collaborative JAD techniques, to build the necessary scope outputs for a project.
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