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Influencing Project Stakeholders Video

Watch this project manager in action video and a discussion of the best techniques for influencing project stakeholders and gaining their support. You need their participation in defining requirements and deliverables, loaning team members, approving change requests and managing risks. Influencing Project Stakeholders Video

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Top Down Project Planning

In many organizations, managers and senior management view project planning as a waste of time. To them, the project plan is needless. They want to “start work immediately without wasting time in useless planning meetings and creating mounds of paperwork.” As a result, project managers have difficulty engaging management in the project-planning task. Why do they […]

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Five Small Project Planning Techniques

Small project planning techniques are often difficult to do well. That’s because new project managers frequently make the mistake of applying all the techniques in their project management textbook. They wind up burying small projects under too many meetings and too much paperwork. There are just a few critical pieces required for success on small projects. […]

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How To Managing Multiple Projects

After successfully managing projects in IT, healthcare, construction, or general business, project managers can move up to managing multiple projects, programs and/or portfolios of projects. Here they must allocate resources across all the projects in the program or portfolio they’re responsible for managing. They must also deal with executive sponsors and stakeholders more often. They must try to enforce effective organization-wide processes […]

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How To Healthcare Project Plan – video

A key part of a good healthcare project plan is the work breakdown structure (WBS). The WBS flows from the scope statement and leads to crystal-clear assignments for the administrative and caregiver team members on your project. It also allows you to make accurate status reports because a good WBS has unambiguous checkpoints against which […]

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How To: Post-Project Review

The post-project review processes are ineffective in most organizations. Consequently, they suffer from the same mistakes on one project after another. Even worse, the bigger the project failure, the less likely the organization is to learn from it. The same issues that cause a project to fail also prevent the people involved from learning from that failure. Organizations need […]

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How To Project Plan – Video

A critical part of your project plan is the work breakdown structure (WBS). The WBS is a decomposition of the project scope. You start by breaking down the scope into 4 to 7 major deliverables. Then you break down each of those major deliverables into smaller deliverables. You continue the process all the way down to tasks you will assign […]

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How To IT Project Plan – Video

The heart of a good IT project plan is the work breakdown structure (WBS). The WBS tells everyone what’s expected of them. It includes assignments for the development staff and the users. Both groups will complete tasks to deliver the project scope. The work breakdown structure begins with the project scope – what the project must deliver […]

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How To Run Project Launch Meeting

The project launch meeting is an opportunity for the project manager and sponsor to build enthusiasm for the project among the project team and the project stakeholders. The team members are the people who will be doing the work. The project stakeholders are people who will be affected by the project and they will be participating in […]

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How Project Methodology Evolves

  Organization’s project methodology evolves through these five stages as they reach project management maturity: 1. Ad hoc projects 2. Increasing density 3. Resource overload 4. Initiation control 5. Consistent success   Knowing which stage your organization is in can help you be consistently successful with your projects. You can adjust your work efforts (or job hunting) to make the […]

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How To Construction Project Plan – Video

A key part of a good construction project plan is the work breakdown structure (WBS). It specifies the work assignment for every crew member, subcontractor and outside consulting engineers and architects who are working on the project. It defines exactly what a good job is for each of them. The work breakdown structure and the scope statement […]

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How To Use Dynamic Project Scheduling

Dynamic project scheduling and the diagram of a predecessor network show us the sequence of tasks and let us design concurrent or parallel tasks. This can significantly shorten a project’s duration. Successful project managers use dynamic project scheduling because it saves them significant amounts of time and lets them quickly model the impact of changes to resources, work or […]

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How To Do Bottom-up Estimating

Bottom-up estimating is a project management technique in which the people who are going to do the work participate in the estimating process. That’s typically the project team members and they work with you, the project manager, to develop estimating data at the lowest level in the work breakdown structure (WBS). When the estimates of work, […]

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The Cost of Internal Project Management Failures

Internal project management failures are costly in terms of wasted time and money. They also erode the executive’s confidence in the ability of its project management staff to deliver strategic results, take advantage of opportunities or remedy problems. This puts the organization at risk competitively if it’s competitors can use projects to take advantage of opportunities and […]

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How To Initiate Projects

Projects fail when executives and stakeholders initiate projects like they’re ordering lunch at the drive-through window of a fast-food joint. In this situation, you, the project manager, can’t control the scope so the project finishes late and produces very little business value. Consistent project failure usually starts when PMs and sponsors initiate projects with fast food order-taking techniques. […]

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How To Use the Project Critical Path Technique

The critical path is the longest sequence of tasks in a project. It determines the project’s duration and completion date. It’s easy to use project critical path analysis to determine the duration and optimize your project plans to finish as quickly as possible. Let’s see an example of how to correctly use the critical path technique. Chris […]

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Project Manager Skills – The Right Stuff

Let’s look at a typical day in the life of a project manager and the right project manager skills they use. You arrived at work a few days after the management plan for the supply room project had been approved. This project was a tough one that required all your project manager skills. You reviewed the project management […]

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Project Scope Statement

The project scope statement is not completed by the project manager politely writing down what the sponsor wants done. Project managers must know how to ask the right questions to get the sponsor to state their acceptance criteria in measurable form. That’s the real definition of what the sponsor wants and how they will measure if […]

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Project from Hell – Video

Project From Hell: Launch Meeting A Project From Hell is bad from the beginning. Watch as a project sponsor uses the project launch meeting to make finish date demands, add new features and threaten the team. The project manager “wimps out” and agrees to everything over the teams members’ objections. He promises suicidal working hours and blindly […]

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Problems Created by Team Micromanagement

Project teams have a wide range of cultures and attitudes toward the project and its manager. Project team members bring expectations based on their prior project experience as well as their attitudes about being on project teams. But the primary determinant of the culture of a project team is the project manager’s behavior on such […]

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Cost Benefit Analysis

Project managers use a cost benefit analysis to demonstrate the value of doing a project. When a new project is initiated, the sponsor and project manager must justify the project to obtain organizational approval to spend the money. Many organizations have rules about what cost to benefit relationship the project must produce to be approved. In some, […]

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Work Breakdown Structure WBS

WBS: Deliverables or a “To Do” List? The work breakdown structure WBS  provides the foundation on which a project manager works.  The PM uses the Work Breakdown Structure WBS to control the project and the team. The WBS also provides the checkpoints against which the PM and the organization measure progress (What is the WBS).  In the […]

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Project Management Bidders Conference – Select Vendors

Project management bidders conferences are part of the process of selecting vendors provide goods or services to the project. The request for proposal (RFP) that is sent out to potential sellers/ vendors contains information about a meeting to be held prior to the submission of the seller bid/proposal. All prospective bidders are invited to this public […]

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How To Identify Project Stakeholders

One of the most important tasks in project management is to identify project stakeholders.  Stakeholders are the people who are affected, positively or negatively, by the project. You must always make an effort to identify project stakeholders early in the planning process.  Let’s look at an example of a small project and see how to […]

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Project Management Careers – Join a Profession In Demand

Project management careers offer you one of the fastest growing professions because people who have the ability to deliver business results on time and within budget are in demand in every industry. Salaries are high with the average income of a certified project manager topping $114,000 US. Project managers are in demand all over the […]

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Questions about the PMP® Exam

Preparing to pass the Project Management Institutes’s (PMI)® Project Management Professional (PMP)® Exam is tough. People have lots of questions about the PMP exam. Here are answers to some of the most common questions. Is there somewhere I can find a list of all the questions/answers that are going to be on the PMP exam? Unfortunately […]

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How To Project Plan Template

On every new project, you need to decide what project plan template elements to include, which to exclude and how to develop them on each particular project. You can use this project plan template to define the project scope and identify major deliverables. You can also use it to manage the project risks, constraints and […]

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Project Planning Turf Wars – Video

Watch this Project Team from Hell make every project planning mistake you have ever seen a team make. These people have a feudal turf war going and the project manager and sponsor can’t seem to tame it. You’ll see these executives make a number of project planning mistakes including bringing their existing political and turf […]

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Two Key Components of a Project Management System

Organizations realize many benefits when they have a project management system that is used by all the project managers in the organization. The system can be entirely manual or fully automated. The objective is to ensure consistency in how project managers initiate, plan, execute, monitor, control and close their projects. This is not to say […]

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How to Pass the PMP® Exam on the First Try – Video

As the Project Management Professional (PMP®) exam continues to evolve, the way you study for it must change as well. The latest change will occur in November, 2015 with the exam outline and contents changing based on a new project manager Role Delineation Study. This is no minor change. The Management Institute (PMI)® has added […]

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Three Career Paths for Getting into Project Management

There are many career paths you can use for getting into project management and starting a professional career. Here are three situations we’ll explore: a recent college graduate a craftsperson who has worked their way up in the trades a professional, like a systems analyst, accountant or operations manager, wanting to move into project management.   Recent College Graduate […]

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Three Levels of Project Management Risk

The project management risk process has a bad reputation among executives. They have seen project managers waste a great deal of time with endless risk meetings and  generation of mountains of paperwork. Executives have also learned that risk management can be very expensive. Consequently, many executives won’t support risk management, even on large projects where it is vitally […]

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Project Team Member Assignments – Tell Them What You Expect

Too many project management team members work less effectively than they could because the project manager does a poor job of giving them clear performance expectations for their assignment. When people have to guess about what a “good job” is, their work effort is going to be less focused than it should be. If members […]

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Enterprise Project Management – Keys to Improving Project Results

Organizations that do not institute enterprise-wide processes for completing projects have lower project success rates. They also have trouble getting the most important projects completed on time and within budget. Even worse, the lack of  consistent project processes creates chaos in the trenches. Project managers battle each other for team members and no one manages […]

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Project Communications Methods – Video

One of the most challenging parts of project management is choosing the project communications methods for all of the different people who are involved with your project. Each of those team members, stakeholders and executives has a different personality and a different communication preference. You need to be able to “type” each of those personalities […]

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Keys to Successful Project Scheduling

Every project manager does project scheduling. Some do it on a yellow note pad, others use an Excel spreadsheet and still others use software specifically designed for project management. Some project managers have very little data to help them successfully managing their projects, deal with change orders or respond to variances. They may not even […]

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The High Stakes Game of Project Management Estimating

Project estimates are tough for every project manager and doing it well is often the difference between consistent success and frequent failure. Let’s look at some of the fantasies surrounding project estimates and then how to do it right. In the real world, estimating a project’s duration and cost is a high stakes game. The […]

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8 Critical Project Manager Skill Sets

There is no one project manager skill set or technique that makes a project manager successful. Rather, successful project managers have both “hard” and “soft” skills in their project tool belt. They are able to select the appropriate tools and techniques to use on every project they manage. The ability to select the right tools prevents overloading […]

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