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Posts Tagged ‘project management’

I have been involved in implementing corporate-wide information systems, logistics management, and strategic planning. The one truth in participating inĀ or managing a project regardless of size and complexity is, the devil is in the details.

Project management skills and tools are necessary to manage a project from the broadest scope to the infinitesimal detail. Why do I keep being unpleasantly surprised when dealing with vendors and others, who should be practicing the simplest form of project management and do not? Sometimes it’s the simplest thing, like not tracking or following up on an order that should have been received days ago. Other times it’s something larger like not understanding a user’s request for a list of steps that need to be completed before a system can go live.

Project management does not require producing PERT or Gantt charts. It does not require flow charts or mind maps. Basic project management requires understanding the full scope of the work; the knowledge and skills required; the resources: human, tools and finances required; and the time frame and schedule.

The project manager can use any tool or technique to plan, organize, monitor, and control the project. The appropriate tool or technique depends upon scope and complexity, as well as the project manager’s familiarity with the technique.

In the case of the simplest issue of tracking an order, an annotation on a calendar to follow up on receipt of an order might have been sufficient to monitor completion of the task.

In the case of the request for information about implementation, a list of phases, tasks and time frame would be sufficient. The lack of that information hinders the user from preparing a workload plan by not providing an understanding of the full scope of implementation work, knowledge and skills, resources, and time frame and schedule required.

Execution without planning, monitoring, and controlling can produce results – but not necessarily the intended results at the intended time and not necessarily effectively and efficiently.

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