Select Page

Categories

One Size Does Not Fit All

One Size Does Not Fit All
By Joanne Wortman

Have you been to the mall and purchased a shirt that says “one size fits all” for the size? While the shirt may fit some of us perfectly, it might be too large or too small for others. The same goes for a project. This “one size fits all” mentality for all projects can put your smaller projects at great risk by bogging them down in a project management methodology that is too rigorous for the size of these projects.

So what can you do?

Establish a flexible project management methodology framework

  • Define what a “small” and “large” project is in your organization (e.g., a small project can be between 6 – 12 weeks and a large project is anything greater than 12 weeks)
  • Identify the deliverables or documents needed for each project type

  • Monitor smaller projects to validate the success/failure rate of these projects and adjust the deliverables within the framework as necessary

The key point to remember is that the project management methodology is a framework for all projects, not a straitjacket. Read the Complete Article

The Road to Social Media for Project Communications

The Road to Social Media for Project Communications
By Joanne Wortman

Remember when Dorothy arrived in the Land of Oz?

She was faced with a new environment, far different from Kansas, and the change was extraordinary for her. To go home, she was told to follow the Yellow Brick road to the Emerald City. Faced with no way to communicate or even know where she was going except to follow the Yellow Brick road, Dorothy began her journey. Along the way she meets a Scarecrow, a Tin Man and a Cowardly Lion, all with specialized knowledge, to help her along her journey. They stumble along at times, sometimes due to lack of information or unexpected situations, like when the Tin Man needed additional oil to keep his joints from freezing up.

So what does this have to do with project communications? Over the past few years, many social media tools have jockeyed for favor amongst the business community to provide “information” to the masses. Read the Complete Article

The Cloud Has No Clothes!

The Cloud Has No Clothes!
By Joanne Wortman

Everybody remembers the classic fairy tale where an emperor and his people are conned in to believing he was attired in a fantastically beautiful set of clothes, when in fact he was in the buff. No one was willing to admit they did not have the refined taste and intelligence to see the spectacular cloth and splendid robes. It took the strength of innocence in a child to point out the truth. I am about as far from an innocent child as one can get, but it appears to me the cloud is parading about naked.

Every vendor has a cloud offering, every pundit “agrees” the cloud is the future, investors value every cloud company with a premium, every data center operator is “born again” as a cloud player. Every CIO has a cloud initiative and budget line. Really, I have seen this movie plot before, and it does not end well, especially for the Emperor (and the con-men vendors too). Read the Complete Article

5 Rules for a More Agile Approach to Project Management

5 Rules for a More Agile Approach to Project Management
By Joanne Wortman

Here are a few Project Management rules to live by if you want to advance project management in your organization – the agile way:

  1. Fluidity is key; rigidity can stifle project progress. Traditional frameworks call for a priori definitions of roles and responsibilities. In many highly successful organizations, models have been shifting toward more collaborative structures. Efficient teams are being built of all-rounders instead of silo’ed specialists. Such a staffing model provides more opportunity for agile workload balancing over the lifecycle of a project, and may enhance the team’s ability to bring the project in on time.
  2. Managing your stakeholders expectations is more important than managing your project team. Let’s assume you have a skilled team and a well written project plan. Should you be spending most of your time micromanaging and tracking the status of their every move, or would you add more value by communicating more often and more directly with your stakeholders?

Read the Complete Article

Collaboration Tools: Missing Pieces in Your Portal Implementation Plan

Collaboration Tools: Missing Pieces in Your Portal Implementation Plan
By Joanne Wortman

Clearly, many companies have collaboration tools such as portals on their to-do list. Even this early in the year, we’re already hearing some frustration with the earlier adopters, in terms of the difficulties in getting their organizations to actually embrace the powerful functionality of collaboration portals.

Here are four key elements to fostering user adoption of collaboration tools. They need to be baked into your portal implementation plan, because you need to sell this change aggressively into your organization to realize the full ROI of the technology investment. Sometimes, this can be the part of the implementation that requires the most finesse.

  1. Strong executive sponsorship. Portals can fail when they are perceived as an IT initiative. Someone at the top has to get the early message out about how the portal can make the whole business more efficient. Executives can then lead the way by making the portal the preferred place to interact with the executive team.
Read the Complete Article

Project Management Office (PMO) Best Practices

Project Management Office (PMO) Best Practices
By Joanne Wortman

Below are some tips that will improve your PMO performance. Note that the first tip about meetings is more specific to Project Management but may apply in a PMO context.

  1. Writing up your meeting minutes is not as critical as limiting the minutes your team spends in meetings. Don’t get me wrong: published meeting notes are important, and they should still be distributed within 24 hours of each working meeting. The following mental exercise will bring home the importance of running tight, efficient meetings:
    1. Count the number of meeting attendees.
    2. Multiply by the length of the meeting in hours.
    3. Multiply by the number of meeting occurrences over the project lifespan.
    4. Multiply by a fully burdened hourly rate.

    A weekly internal status meeting for a year-long project could be adding significant cost to your project. Limit your agenda to the essentials: It’s not so important to review what everyone has done or what went well.

Read the Complete Article

Project Triage – An Introduction

Project Triage – An Introduction
By Joanne Wortman

The concept of triage comes from medicine, and in particular medical treatment under difficult circumstances—war, epidemic, disaster—where the number of people needing treatment exceeds the resources available. In such situations, the sick or injured are typically assigned to one of three groups.

In the business context, it usually means allocating scarce cash and human capital under difficult economic conditions, when the number of ongoing projects exceeds the level of available resources.

Project Triage Framework

In the current economic climate, it probably makes sense to perform a mini-triage of your project portfolio quarterly, with an annual triage as the last fiscal quarter approaches. In addition, you may be faced with the need to triage in emergency situations such as a sudden shift in business strategy, in the face of a new acquisition, or when presented with an across the board budget cut. Periodic review is a cornerstone of an effective project portfolio management strategy. Read the Complete Article

Practical Project Management

Practical Project Management
By Joanne Wortman

In times like this every PMP needs a healthy dose of a new and improved PMP, that is, project management practicality. As the recession lingers, those of us who drive the success of projects, programs, and any corporate initiative are going to have to find new ways of doing more with less. Here are seven practical tips for cutting corners without sacrificing project success.

1. Curtail time-consuming interviews for requirements-gathering. There are several easy ways to cut the effort required to gather information from subject matter experts:

  • Group them by functional area (when appropriate) and avoid interviewing single stakeholders.
  • Use structured information gathering templates and require that they take a pass through them and begin filling in the required information before the meeting. The keyword here is structured. I prefer Excel templates with restricted ranges of responses, rigidly enforced with data validation limiting those responses to list.
Read the Complete Article

Reshaping your PMO in Tough Times

Reshaping your PMO in Tough Times
By Joanne Wortman

There’s been some buzz lately on how PMOs can help your company spend wisely during a recession. In wading through the recent buzz, it’s important to know that not all PMOs are created equal, and the skills of the PMO leadership can make or break your ability to use a PMO as a weapon in your recession-beating strategy. Because the economic climate has changed drastically, you may be in danger of overspending if you don’t re-evaluate and re-engineer your PMO to meet the needs of the day.

A lot has been said about the key metrics for gauging PMO success. It’s important to reconsider your metrics during the recession, however, because the shift in business climate may require you to track against different targets.

Look critically at your PMO and the way it operates to see if your organization is guilty of any of these behaviors. Read the Complete Article

Contributors

PM Hut currently has 570 contributors! Please contact us in case you’re interested in publishing your Project Management articles on PM Hut and joining the list below!

An article published on PM Hut may be eligible for PMI PDU credits under the Category D of the CCR Program (Giving Back to the Profession). This category is capped to 45 PDUs per 3 years. Authors claiming their PM Hut published articles for PMI PDUs are required (by PMI) to supply PM Hut’s physical address in their application. Please contact us for this information.

Please note that it is the responsibility of the author to handle the whole process for claiming the PDUs, PM Hut’s role is currently only limited to supplying its own physical address to the author.

1 – A1 Enterprise 286 – Karl Fischer
2 – Aaron Sanders 287 – Kathlika Thomas
3 – Abdulla Alkuwaiti 288 – Katy Whitton
4 – Abhijat Saraswat 289 – Kay Wais
5 – Abhilash Gopi 290 – Kaz Young
6 – Adam Leggett 291 – Keith Custer
7 – Ade Miller 292 – Keith L.
Read the Complete Article

Categories