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Change Management for Project Managers

Change Management for Project Managers
By Michelle Symonds

Projects that focus on the needs of the customer generally have more successful outcomes than those that focus on the product itself. So the desire to keep a client happy is paramount to most project managers – they know that the client will have to sign-off on the completed project and if they are not satisfied with the end-result then the project will not be deemed a success.

But on the other hand a project manager also has to keep a tight grip on finances and the project schedule, which naturally means controlling requests for change. If the scope of the project starts to diverge substantially from the original requirements then the client may be happy with the end product but they will certainly not be happy with the budget and/or time over-run.

So how does a project manager put the client’s needs first when they want to change details of the project part-way through the schedule but still manage to deliver a quality product on budget, on time and within scope? Read the Complete Article

It’s Time to Help Your Team Embrace Creativity

It’s Time to Help Your Team Embrace Creativity
By Michelle Symonds

Creativity is an important part of the success of a business or project. It is what makes work stand out and is vital to innovation. Being creative in the workplaces can take a project to the next level. While you may be creative yourself, it is important to maximize the creativity of the whole team to achieve greater success. While project management courses can’t inspire your own creative style, they can help you learn how to inspire it in others.

As a project manager, there are several steps you can take to inspire the creativity of your team.

  1. Brainstorming

    When one person thinks of an idea, it can then inspire even better ideas from other people. Soon, ideas are bouncing around the room. Getting everyone together to brainstorm ideas is a great way to inspire creativity, however some people find this environment difficult.

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Useful Tips to Help You Streamline Your IT Project Schedule

Useful Tips to Help You Streamline Your IT Project Schedule
By Michelle Symonds

If you are a project manager in the IT industry, it is possible that you have attended project management training during some point in your career. If so, you will have no doubt learnt some handy tips and tricks for the successful completion of your IT project. However, there is always more that you can learn. Here are some useful tips and checks to make to help you successfully complete your IT project.

Pre-Assessment Metrics

There are six metrics to calculate before you can begin the quality checks on your project. These are:

  1. Complete Tasks – those with an actual finish date.
  2. Incomplete Tasks – those without an actual finish date.

  3. Total Tasks – all tasks with the exception of summaries, milestone, zero baseline duration and sub-project tasks.

  4. Baseline Count – all tasks completed before the status project date.

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Social Media and Project Management

Social Media and Project Management
By Michelle Symonds

In their infancy, social media networks were predominantly used by the public to communicate their personal news to each other. However, social media is now a vital part of running a business. Most businesses now use at least one social network platform. They use these to promote their business, market their products or services and to keep clients and customers updated with their latest news and information. They are also used in-house for the purpose of collaboration and communication.

As such, using social media is part of the role of a project manager. It is also a relatively recently added topic on project management courses as the need for project management training in this area is now recognized. If social communications are part of your role, then you may be wondering what the future holds in this arena.

Networks

As social media is constantly changing, it is difficult to make too many predictions about the future. Read the Complete Article

Encouraging Positive Energy in Project Management

Encouraging Positive Energy in Project Management
By Michelle Symonds

A positive team is a productive team. As a project manager, there are many different roles and tasks you must undertake. One of these is creating a positive working environment for yourself and all other members of your team. By doing so, you are increasing the chances of project success, reducing the likelihood of problems and potentially cutting the length of time it takes to project completion. If you have ever attended any project management training, you will know that one of the things you will be taught is how to transfer positivity to your team. Here are some tips for creating positive energy in project management.

  • Be positive yourself

    Every aspect of project management requires you to lead by example. Your employees will look at the way you behave and take their lead from this as you are their role model.

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What Is Kanban

What Is Kanban
By Michelle Symonds

Anyone who has ever been on project management training knows that there are constantly new and innovative methods being introduced to help you become a successful project manager. These are often based on research within the field, and the observations of experts in the field of management. If you have recently been on one of these project management courses, it is possible that you may have come across the Kanban Method.

Aims of the Kanban Method

This approach was originally formulated by David J. Anderson and there are two main aims. The first of these is to help you to remove the chaos of a project by focusing and prioritizing. The second aim is to make delivery more consistent by finding solutions to problems associated with workflow and processes.The catchphrase linked to the Kanban Method is ‘stop starting and start finishing’.

The Basic Principles

This method uses four basic principles:

  1. Use what you already do now.
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Interviewing for a New Project Manager? Here Are Some Great Questions to Try Out

Interviewing for a New Project Manager? Here Are Some Great Questions to Try Out
By Michelle Symonds

If you’re about to start interviewing people for a project management position you’ll need to have a great selection of questions at the ready to ensure you’re going to get the best out of your interviewees. It’s always worth adding some new questions to your list so you feel as though you candidate is challenged in a positive way, and you don’t just feel like you’re going through the motions.

Here are some fantastic questions to ask your project management candidates:

  • Which types of projects do you dislike the most?

    This question is useful because: Project management involves working on a huge variety of projects and the best project managers don’t shy away from projects no one else wants to do. Putting the business first means doing their best on any project they are given, even if they do hate it.

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Why Is Stakeholder Management So Important?

Why Is Stakeholder Management So Important?
By Michelle Symonds

Even the smallest projects have stakeholders, and most methodologies, approaches and tactics will involve some sort of stakeholder management. Project management training teaches us that managing stakeholders effectively enables you and your entire team to understand exactly how the people involved in the project from the outside will be affected by it. This means you then have a much better ability to plan communication with those affected, meaning you avoid potential issues.

In general, the standard procedure involves gauging interest and involvement, then working to communicate with less enthusiastic stakeholders, engaging them in various styles of communication, letting them know how the project will benefit them.

There are also lots of other reasons you take part in stakeholder management, and here are a few of them;

  • Free help

    Some stakeholders are incredibly proactive, which means you get access to lots of help for absolutely nothing.

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Project Managers: Importance of Networking

Project Managers: Importance of Networking
By Michelle Symonds

Have you ever attended a workshop on budget management or a seminar with a project management expert and wondered whether there is really any point in attending? The point is that every event like this is an opportunity to network, which is an essential part of being a successful project manager. Taking part in an excellent project management course gives you lots of amazing new skills to apply to your job role, but most won’t teach you about networking because it’s a part of project management that can be massively undervalued.

Here are a few tips on getting networking right:

  • Don’t ‘sell’, ask

    Don’t assume networking is all about selling yourself and your skills. The main focus of networking is finding opportunities, talking to business owners and finding out about any issues or problems they may have that you could potentially help with.

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Key Project Management Methodologies – PRINCE2, PER, NPI, RAD, Scrum and Waterfall

Key Project Management Methodologies – PRINCE2, PER, NPI, RAD, Scrum and Waterfall
By Michelle Symonds

When you invest in project management training you will become familiar with key project management methodologies. Learning about these methodologies will enable you to organize your project effectively, using processes that focus your strategy and enable you to achieve better results. Here are a just a few key PM methodologies:

Waterfall

This methodology is well known in most industries and is particularly popular within the construction industry. There are several different versions of this process with the original version including these key phases:

  • Elements stipulation
  • Design
  • AKA or Coding
  • Integration
  • AKA Validation
  • Installing
  • Maintaining

PER (Packaged Enable Re-engineering)

In the most modern PM courses this methodology may not be referenced, but it is still commonly researched because it follows a conventional and traditional avenue to project management. The lengthy papers on the methodology explain in depth theories and applications which could be implemented in conjunction with other processes. Read the Complete Article

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Recommended PM App

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