Project Management Survival: A Practical Guide to Leading, Managing and Delivering Challenging Projects [NOOK Book]

Overview

This book is written for the person who finds themselves handed a major corporate project and is wondering how to see it through successfully without ending up on the candidacy list for the sack.

Written from a real-world perspective, this book provides you with a template for success based on project management techniques from the school of corporate hard knocks. Author Richard Jones shows you how to avoid project killers, such as inheriting ...
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Project Management Survival: A Practical Guide to Leading, Managing and Delivering Challenging Projects

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Overview

This book is written for the person who finds themselves handed a major corporate project and is wondering how to see it through successfully without ending up on the candidacy list for the sack.

Written from a real-world perspective, this book provides you with a template for success based on project management techniques from the school of corporate hard knocks. Author Richard Jones shows you how to avoid project killers, such as inheriting an incompetent, scared, or doomed team. He also gives practical advice on getting to the truth of a project, getting the right initial plan, developing a genuinely workable plan, and reveals how to manage people so the project stays on track.

If you are tasked suddenly with managing a project in-house, the likelihood is that you will find that you are dumped in an impossible situation. This book shows you how to control the situation and come out on top.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780749452438
  • Publisher: Kogan Page, Ltd.
  • Publication date: 9/3/2007
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 256
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Richard Jones is a founding partner of Ventura Team LLP.  He has spearheaded technology development and implementation projects for major companies including Shell, Universal Studios, British Steel, and British Telecom.

Richard Jones is a founding partner of Ventura Team LLP. He has managed projects for major companies including Shell, Universal Studios, British Steel, and British Telecom.

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Table of Contents


Acknowledgements ix Introduction 1 Part I Understanding Projects
1 What Are Projects and Why Do They Fail? 5 What is a project? 5 What is project management? 6 Why is it vital to manage projects well? 8 Project killers 9
2 Dead Project Walking - Why some projects must be killed 13 Why dead projects live on 14 Part II Where are We?
3 Diagnosing an Existing Project 19 Why doing a diagnostic makes sense 19 Getting to the truth 20 Digging into the plan 24 Diagnosing a multicompany programme 28 Part III Getting the Right Initial Plan
4 Leading Projects 33 The wrong kind of project managers 33 Being the right kind of project manager 34 Give the team responsibility 35 Managing in a matrix 36 Being a team player 37 Overcoming 'It can't be done' 38 Focusing your attention in the right places 41
5 Project Scope and Initiation 44 Introduction 44 Project initiation 45 The Project Charter 48 Creating the Project Charter 48 Get it right early on - it's cheaper 50 Summary and actions 56
6 Agreeing Objectives 57 Why objectives are important 57 Developing well-defined objectives 59 Good and bad objectives - some examples 61 Summary and actions 65
7 Milestones 66 The problem with bad milestones 67 How to write a good milestone 68 Writing milestones 70 Differences between milestones and gates 70 Summary and actions 74
8 Refining Milestones 76 Do you have the right milestones? 76 How result paths help 76 Setting up result paths 77 Assessing result paths 79 Developing the detail for each milestone 82 Beyond milestones 82 Summary and action 83
9 Activities/Work Breakdown Structure 85 What is a work breakdown structure? 86 The work breakdown structure underpins much of the planning89 The rolling wave approach 90 The impact of rolling wave on estimation and contingency 91 Summary and actions 93
10 Assigning Resources 96 Identifying the resources you need 96 Summary and action 98
11 Time Estimation 100 Why estimation goes wrong 100 Why managing using 'percentage complete' doesn't work 102 A better approach for estimation - work content 106 Producing good estimates 108 Record any assumptions used in estimation 111 Summary and actions 112
12 Resource Availability 114 Estimating task durations from the work content 114 Summary and actions 122
13 Dependencies 124 Different types of dependencies 125 Lag 126 Predecessors and successors 128 Tasks and subtasks 129 Critical path 131 Slack/float 133 Summary and actions 134
14 Risk and Mitigation 136 The problems with simple risk/contingency planning 137 Identifying and managing risks 137 Risk identification 138 Risk assessment 139 Risk reduction 143 Risk management 145 Summary and actions 146 Part IV Getting the Plan Right
15 Optimizing the Plan 151 Create more realistic resource usage 152 Improve resource usage to shorten the duration of key tasks 153 Reducing task durations on the critical path 157 Working in parallel 157 Optimization and risk 158 Project crashing 160 Developing the project budget 163 Where you end up is where you start 163 Part V Staying on Track
16 Roles, Responsibilities and Communication 167 Project manager 167 Work package or module managers 169 Project team members 169 Project sponsor 170 Project office 171 Steering group 171 Communication between the roles 172 Project manager's weekly checklist 175
17 Updating the Plan 178 The update information you need from team members 178 Integrating the updates 179 Updating the plan in practice 181 How often? 182
18 Monitoring Progress 183 Introduction 183 How to monitor progress within a project 184 Earned Value Analysis (EVA) 186 Using EVA to monitor progress 190 Limitations of EVA 193
19 Handling Issues 194 Introduction 194 What is an issue? 195 Prioritizing issues 195 Managing issues 195
20 Controlling Change 197
21 Reporting 201 Reporting down 201 Reporting up 202
22 Project Closure 203 Appendix 1 The Changing Nature of Projects 205 Appendix 2 Project Management Software 211 Appendix 3 Project Management Approaches and Methodologies 219 Appendix 4 Problem-solving Techniques 229 Appendix 5 References and Resources 233 Index 235
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