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Project Management Blog
We’ve beaten Mr. Genius, Ms. Bellows, Mr. Promise and Mrs. Process.  But what chance do we have against Ms. Meetings?  She is very sweet.  As a matter of fact, she brings donuts to all of her meetings.  And she certainly has a lot of them.  Any time there is a question she calls a meeting.  She has regularly scheduled Status Meetings, Team Meetings, Progress Meetings and Recap meetings.  During testing there is a meeting at 7:00 AM to determine the daily schedule, a meeting at noon to check on status and one at 6:00 PM to review results.  Then every hour on the hour she meets with the individual areas to make sure progress is being made.  She even had a couple of meeting to determine why productivity was so low.
Published in Blogs
Saturday, 12 May 2007 10:43

Deming's 3rd Point in Project Management

Inspection is a Tool for Improvement, Not a Whip

Deming's third point urges practitioners to design quality into processes, using inspection as an information-gathering tool to do so. In project management, the processes and systems make up a methodology. Does your organization have a consistent methodology, or does everyone run projects their own way?

Inspecting project performance through the lens of continuous improvement facilitates applying lessons learned to a consistent and ever-improving methodology. This can not be done effectively unless there is a consistent system of managing projects in the first place.

Published in Blogs
Monday, 16 April 2007 08:18

A Question of Ethics

Ethics has been the topic of several separate conversations I have had recently.  One friend expressed near outrage about a discussion she overheard between two of her managers.  It ended with one saying, “Well, your ethics aren’t necessarily mine!”  Another friend found it amusing that he was able to avoid the company ethics meeting by lying about already attending. 

Published in Blogs
Wednesday, 11 April 2007 19:58

Are You A Master?

In the April 2007 edition of PM Network, there is an article titled "Master Plan: IT executives need to develop an eye for project managers" that I would like to comment on.

The article is mostly based off a study done by Gartner Inc., in Stamford CT, USA. One sad but true statistic stated that 20-30% of IT executives "have a 'dismissive attitude' toward project management". Those are the same execs that suffer "from poor quality, late delivery and unrealistic project costs." I can related to this information from my personal experience, and would venture a guess that when you move into executives in operational areas, the dismissive attitude towards proper project management increases. The majority of IT execs seem to have seen the light and made the realization that there really is value to be delivered by well run projects by individuals who have the right skills to do so in a formal manner. 
Published in Blogs
Thursday, 01 March 2007 01:27

Stakeholder Management

Project managers deal with dynamic environments. Their role is not only to deliver projects on time, within budget and to the required quality, but extend to include other aspects that are equally important.
Published in Blogs
Saturday, 27 January 2007 17:30

Quantitative Risk

Quantitative Risk Analysis is performed on risks that have been prioritized by the Qualitative Risk Analysis process as potentially and substantially impacting the project’s competing demands. The Quantitative Risk Analysis process analyzes the effect of those risk events and assigns a numerical rating to those risks. It also presents a quantitative approach to making decisions in the presence of uncertainty. This process uses techniques such as Monte Carlo simulation and decision tree (comment that you’ll take about decision tree in a moment) analysis to:
Published in Blogs
Saturday, 27 January 2007 16:49

Management Styles

Management Styles: The Project Communications Management section of the exam may address the following management styles:

Authoritarian: Lets individuals know what is expected of them; gives specific guidance; expects adherence to rules and standards
Combative: Eager to fight or be disagreeable over any situation
Conciliatory: Friendly and agreeable; attempts to unite players into a compatible working team
Disruptive: Tends to disrupt unity and cause disorder
Ethical: Honest and sincere; presses for fair solutions; goes “by the book”
Facilitating: Does not interfere with day-to-day tasks, but is available for help and guidance when needed
Intimidating: Reprimands employees for the sake of a “tough guy” image
Judicial: Applies sound judgment
Promotional: Cultivates team spirit; rewards good work; encourages subordinates to realize their full potential
Secretive: Not open or outgoing in speech, activity, or purpose

 

Published in Blogs
Thursday, 25 January 2007 21:34

Acquiring the Project Team

Recruiting Team Members - The project manager has to follow the rules of the host organization. The PM must be aware of, and work well with, the levels of authority. If the PM is working within a Functional matrix, then he must be prepared to allow the employee’s functional manager to determine things like availability and the PM must provide feedback to the functional manager regarding performance. The PM has little authority to perform these tasks.

Published in Blogs
Thursday, 25 January 2007 21:30

PM Types of Authority

TYPES OF POWER

According to PMI®, the project manager can exert the following types of power:

The Powers of the Project Manager
Power Definition
Expert The project manager is an expert with the goal the project focuses on.
Reward The project manager can reward the project team members.
Coercive The project manager can punish the project team members.
Formal The project manager is formally assigned to the role of the project manager.
Referent The project team knows the project manager. The project manager refers to the person that assigned them to the role of project manager.

 

  • Expert Power - Expert power can only be exercised by individuals who are held in particular esteem because of their special knowledge or skill. The project manager’s ability to use this power derives from reputation, knowledge, and experience.
  • Reward Power - Reward power involves positive reinforcement and the ability to award people something of value in exchange for their cooperation. The project manager’s ability to use this power derives from his or her position in the organizational hierarchy and degree of control over the project.
  • Coercive Power - Coercive power is predicated on fear (for example, subordinate fears being deprived of something for failing to do what the supervisor asks). The ability to use this power derives from the project manager’s control over the project and project personnel.
  • Formal Power - Legitimate power is derived from the person’s formal position within the organization. The project manager’s ability to use this power derives from his or her position in the organizational hierarchy and his or her degree of control over the project, as modified by the organizational climate. Use of this power should be in conjunction with expert and reward power whenever possible.
  • Referent Power - Referent power is based on citing the authority of a more powerful person (for example, one’s supervisor) as the basis for one’s own authority. The project manager’s ability to use this power derives from his or her position in the organizational hierarchy.

 

 

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