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Reload this page Project Planning Strategies and Tools

Here I reconcile competing frameworks and terminology in the project management “Best Practices”. Ideas here are implemented in project plans for building websitesanother page on this site

Sound: “Tranquility base here. The eagle has landed."

"festina lente" -- literally translated in Latin means to make haste slowly.


Topics this page:

  • Frameworks
  • When: Phases and Milestones
  • Why: Goals and Objectives
  • What: Outcomes and Deliverables
  • How: Processes and Tasks
  • Who: Roles and Deliverables
  • Whoa: Risks and Tradeoffs
  • Software Tools
  • Best Practices
  • Your comments???

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    Set screen Project Management Frameworks

    • The Project Memory JoggerA website external to this site is based on this framework from Paula Martin and Karen Tate. It has become popular through being marketed along with the Team Memory Jogger and the original Memory Jogger from AQP.

      I like it because it uses generic language applicable to any project. It has the potential of allowing both IT and non-IT people to use the same language of project management.

      It is a simplification of the PMI framework, which has an additional Control phase that overlaps other phases.

    • The PMI (Project Management Institute)A website external to this site and their encyclopedic 184 page Body of KnowledgeAdobe PDF format. is the standard in U.S. industry. It is used to certify project managers with PMP designations.

    • International Standard ISO 9096:1992 / BS 6069: Guide to Project Management Standard

    • The PRINCE2 (Projects in Controlled Environments) was first developed in 1989 as a standard for IT project management by the UK government. Organizations are certified by Practioners (such as Scott Spence) who have taken the one-hour 75 question closed-book £100 Foundation and the three-hour open-book £208 Practitioner exams administered by the APM Group

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    MSF Process Model v3

    Set screen Project Phases and Milestones

      This table lists the terms used by various frameworks to delineate phases of a project to provide projects structure and guidance throughout the project's life cycle. This MSF Process Model divides the achievements of a project into 4 phases, each beginning with an approval to proceed and culminating in a milestone event.

      This table illustrates why it's important to spend time to make sure that everyone has a clear definition of terms used. The word “planning” can denote either preparations for beginning a project or detailed specifications of the project's outcomes. The graphic arts industry uses the word “production” as a verb to denote activities to create content. However, in IT professionals have used the phrase “in production” to denote the state when end users make use of a system.

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      # Milestone at Completion MartinTate
      / PMI
      / UML
    • 1
    • Vision/Scope Approved Initiation Envisioning Inception
      / Analysis
      Planning and Strategy Starting Up A Project (SU) & Initiating A Project (IP) Conceptualization, Research
    • 2
    • Project Plan Approved Planning Planning Elaboration
      / Design
      Design and Specification Prototyping Planning (PL) & Directing A Project (DP) Design
    • 3
    • Scope Complete / First Use Execution Developing Construction
      & Testing
      Production Managing Stage Boundaries (SB) & Controlling A Stage (CS) Development
    • 4
    • Product Release Close-out Stabilizing
      Launch & Deployment Testing Managing Product Delivery (MP) & Closing A Project (CP) Transition

      Set screen More Steps Before the Project Starts

      The DoD 5000.2 (Rev. 2/26/93) specifies a “Determination of Mission Need”, then a Phase 0 for “Concept Exploration and Definition”.

      Click on a button to see information on Iterations and phases.
      Click here for information about understanding and capturing business processes.
      Click here for information about understanding, capturing and managing user needs.
      Click here for information about transforming requirements into software designs.
      Click here for information about implementing software.
      Click here for information about testing applications.
      Click here for information about deploying an application to its user community.
      Click here for information about configuration and change management.
      Click here for information about managing risk, features, schedules and resources.
      Click here for information about Process configuration.
      Click on a button to see information about iterations and representative iteration workflows.
      The Rational Framework overlays an additional vertical dimension of Workflows to group activities logically. Workflows span several phases.

      Wysocki, R. K., Beck, R., & Crane, D. B. (2003). Effective Project Management (3rd ed.). New York: John Wiley & Sons. ISBN:0-471-43221-0 soft.

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    Set screen Phase 1: Project Initiation / Inception / Envisioning / Analysis

      In the MartinTate CORE PM method, the first phase is where we decide WHAT must be done and what limits or constraints we must live within. This phase is the responsibility of the sponsor (the management person with oversight of the project), but it can be done by the project leader with the sponsor reviewing and approving it when it's complete.

      To ensure readiness for a company-wide Program/Project, it may be necessary to hold a workshop to introduce management methodology disciplines. A pilot project of non mission-critical systems requiring minimal integration.

      Output from this phase typically include Use Casesanother page on this site and Business-level Sequence Diagrams.

      Most importantly, show the unmet customer needs (pain) being met by the proposed project.


    Key questions answered by a proposal:

    • Why you? What are your qualifications?

    • Why Now?

    • Why Me? With your plan are you asking for mentors, associates, or just sources of funding?

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    Set screen Phase 2: Project Planning / Elaboration / Design / Prototyping

      In this phase the team decides how the project will be done: by whom, for how much money, how long.

      Outputs from this phase is the project plan, which is approved by the sponsor, customer, and other key stakeholders (people or groups affected by the project). There are three sections to each plan:

      • Scope - what will be produced and we break that down into subparts.
      • Assurance - how to assure that the project will be successful by looking at risk and reviews and approvals.
      • Resources - who and how much - how much time, effort and money.

      Here are the steps to planning:

      1. Break-down project phases into tasks which can be assigned to individuals
      2. Specify the calendar for resources and assign resources to tasks
      3. Estimate task durations -- the length of time to complete the task. (Zero duration tasks automatically become Milestones)
      4. Specify inflexible start or finish date constraints, if any.
      5. Map predecessor dependencies & start date constraints
      6. to specify extent of mutual overlap or inactive lag time dalay among tasks
      7. Balance overload and underload conflicts

    Articles from project management veteran Tom Mochal at TechRepublic

  • Steps on how to build a websiteanother page on this site

  • Sample steps for ISO 9000 Implementationanother page on this site

  • A sample Project Plananother page on this site

  • Microsoft Project website

  • PriceWaterhouseCoopers' Project Advisory Practice offers a free Project Advisor newsletter.

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    Set screen Phase 3: Project Execution / Construction / Development / Production

      Some use the word implementation in reference to implementing the plan (such as creating software) rather than installation of the product created as a result of following the project plan.

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    Set screen Phase 4: Project Deployment / Transition / Stabilizing / Close-Out

      This step includes deployment to end users.

      The advantage of ending with a post-implementation analysis and report, especially user reviews of impact and satisfaction:

      • Reflective analysis of the project has the benefit of hindsight.
      • "Lessons Learned" can help to identify follow-on actions.
      • Written testimonials of achievements provides proof for enhancing individuals' resume.
      • Documentation is useful in justifying funding of future projects.
      • People may adopt changes out of gratifude.
      • Formal decommissioning ensures proper diposition of project assets.
      • A formal closing ceremony provides emotional closure to the project.

      Ideal results include efficiently shifting and leveraging resources to the next project with mimimum loss.

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    Set screen Why: Project Goals


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    Set screen What: Product Outcomes

      An outcome is the actual product for use by intended end users. Typically, it's satisfied customers. For Amazon, KBToys, or other eCommerce websites, their outcome could be receipt and enjoyment of a book. For eBay,,, or other matching service site, their outcome could be services being provided.

      Internally, outcomes are Business Benefits and Goals (What's the pay-back to investors and other stakeholders)



      • Quicker Decision Making time
      • Quicker Turnaround time: Instant access to information


      • Improved Employee Development:
      • Better People: Widely attract people
      • Better Employee Morale: Common base of information
      • Attract better people
      • Higher Customer Satisfaction
      • Repeat Business


      • Higher Income and Profits from:
        • Higher Productivity (Do More With Less)
        • Lower Costs
      • More visitors
      • More Sales Volume
      • Bigger Capacity to handle more volume of work
      • Expanded Market Share

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    Set screen What: Product Deliverables

      Testing artifact
      Requirements Acceptance TestCustomers
      High-level Architectural Design System TestTest Team
      Detailed Component Elaboration Integration TestConfiguration Management
      Coding Unit Test Developer
      The Deliverables for a project depend upon the type of project. Here are the Design phase deliverables for a Website Design projectanother page on this site.

      Deliverables are produced by people fulfilling their own roles, perhaps as an intermediate step that may not have any value to end consumers who see only the final outcomes.

      It's too easy to get lulled into producing documents rather than producing results -- satisfied users who keep returning and paying money.

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    Set screen How: Project Processes

      The PMI BOK defines the Processes associated with the Generally Accepted Project Management Knowledge Areas and phase where each is predominately performed: Core Processes are in bold.
      Knowledge Area Project ... Management Processes by Phase
      Initiation Planning Execution Close-Out


    • Initiation  
    • Scope Planning
    • Scope Definition
    • Scope Verification
    • Scope Change Control
    • Time

    • Activity Definition
    • Activity Sequencing
    • Activity Duration Estimating
    • Schedule Development
    • Schedule Control
    • Cost

    • Resource Planning
    • Cost Estimating
    • Cost Budgeting
    • Cost Control
    • Integration

    • Project Plan Development
    • Project Plan Execution
    • Overall Change Control
    • Quality

    • Quality Planning
    • Quality Assurance
    • Quality Control
    • Human Resource

    • Organizational Planning
    • Staff Acquisition
    • Team Development
    • Communications

    • Communications Planning
    • Information Distribution
    • Performance Reporting
    • Administrative Closure
    • Risk

    • Risk Identification
    • Risk Quantification
    • Risk Response Development
    • Risk Response Control
    • Procurement

    • Procurement Planning
    • Solicitation Planning
    • Solicitation
    • Source Selection
    • Contract Administration
    • Contract Close-Out

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    The CMM Levels of Maturity

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      Set screen
    Maturity Level Type of Processes

    5. Optimizing

    Continuous process improvement is enabled by quantitative feedback from the process and from piloting innovative ideas and technologies. Process Control

    4. Managed

    Detailed measures of the software process and product quality are collected. Both the software process and products are quantitatively understood and controlled. Process Measurement

    3. Defined

    The software process for both management and engineering activities is documented, standardized, and integrated into a standard software process for the organization. All projects use an approved, tailored version of the organization's standard software process for developing and maintaining software. Process Definition

    2. Repeatable

    Basic project management processes are established to track cost, schedule, and functionality. The necessary process discipline is in place to repeat earlier successes on projects with similar applications. Basic Project Management

    1. Initial

    The software process is characterized as ad hoc, and occasionally even chaotic. Few processes are defined, and success depends on individual effort and heroics. Ad hoc processes

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      Set screen Structured vs. Rapid Application Development

      The CMM model seeks repeatability. However, some organizations -- particularly fast-moving dot com design shops -- seek a more fluid model. Such shops may be more comfortable using John Keane's RAD Framework. It consists of three interlocking aspects:

      • System Engineering
      • Tools and Techniques
      • Prototype Evolution

      I think this is a brilliant viewpoint because it describes the focus of a modern artist.

      For example, some may look at the “action painting” shown here and think any child could create such chaos. However, Time magazine critic Robert Hughes claims that “it is impossible to make a forgery of Jackson Pollock's work” because it is actually the result of some engineering. But it's not precision engineering as one would design an airplane. “Each age finds its own technique.”, says its painter, Jackson Pollock (1932-56). He denied that his paintings are absolutely spontaneous. He would often retouch the drip with a brush. Indeed, physicists have determined that Pollack's seemingly random distribution of drips and streaks, are fractal in nature. Yet Pollock had almost preternatural control over the total effect of those skeins and receding depths of paint. Pollock was called “Jack the Dripper” because he used no easel, no palette -- not even a brush. He applied industrial paint directly from the can, dripping it onto his canvas or flinging it with sticks or knives. He would place his canvas on the floor and attack it from all sides. “I don't work from sketches or drawings. My painting is direct,” the artist once said.

      'Number 1, 1950' (also named Lavender Mist), 1950 by Jackson Pollack, at the National Gallery of Art, Washington DC
    A website can be just as complex as this painting.

    “The art of progress is to preserve order amid change and to preserve change amid order.” —Alfred North Whitehead, in Forbes magazine, Dec. 1, '57.

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    Set screen How: Roles and Deliverables

      Clearly defined roles improve teamwork because they provide a scalable structure for defining responsibilities depending on a project's scope. This document presents two approaches to defining roles.

      On a high level, the MSF Model defines six roles related to business and/or technical domains:

      1. Product Management articulates a vision for the product or service, acquires and quantifies customer requirements, develops and maintains the business case and manages customer expectations.
      2. Program Management drives the critical decisions necessary to release the right product or service at the right time, and coordinates the required decisions to deliver it in a manner consistent with organizational standards and interoperability goals. Done by a PMO (Project Management Office) structure.
      3. Development builds or implements a product or service that meets the specification and customer expectations, delivering a system that is fully compliant with the negotiated functional specification.
      4. Testing ensures all issues are known before the release of the product or service, exercising user interface, APIs, and integration of new software into existing systems.
      5. User education maximizes user experience users through performance solutions and training systems. Also reduces support costs by making the product easier to understand and use.
      6. Logistics Management ensures a smooth rollout, installation, and migration of the product to the operations and support groups.

      Goals and Roles

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    Set screen Project Workflows and Roles


    Click on this thumbnail to for the full size graphic on another frame.

    download Download the Visio 2000 graphic file used to create this.

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    Set screen Roles and Deliverables: The Customer Contact Team

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      Below are short descriptions of each role and the deliverable items they are responsible for publishing.  


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    Sales Account Executive

    In some companies, salespeople are “hunters”. Once they establish a relationship, they move on to make the next conquest. Their role is to open doors to the rest of the team. During the project, this person may stay above the fray to play the “good cop” so they could smooth things over when relationships run into difficulty.


  • Parties!
  • Project Goals
  • Business Benefits
  • Client References
  • Success Stories
  • Producer / Project Manager

    This person represents the management of the organization -- a “mini CEO” responsible for managing the risks and the environment which the rest of the team operates. During the Planning Phase this person identifies and quantifies risks, then develop a response to them.

    He or she is the primary interface with corporate management: legal, marketing, accounting, HR, facilities. This person often plays the “bad cop” who has to push back on client demands.

    During the Execution Phase this person performs Cost Control by approving spending requests according to the outputs of Cost Estimating and Cost Budgeting from the Planning Phase.

    Favorite saying: “I'm really easy to get along with once you people learn to worship me.”


  • Roles, Goals, Objectives, Milestones
  • Work Breakdown Structure
  • Risk Management Plan
  • Staffing/Hiring Plan
  • Purchasing Plan
  • Facilities Requests
  • Project Status Presentations
  • Editor

    The Editor manages the assets of the project like a financial “Controller” handles money. Because he or she is responsible for safeguarding and distributing project assets, this person ensures Product Management During the Execution Phase this person performs Scope Change Control.

    On very large projects Editors report to the Project Manager, but most report to a Financial executive.


  • Project Assets List:
  • Directory folder structure and Object Naming Conventions
  • Check-in / Check-out and other version management procedures
  • Copies of media with accompanying MD5 Checksum diskette to verify data integrity
  • Project Coordinator / Customer Service Representative

    While other (more senior) members of the customer contact team may be busy and out of the office, the Customer Service Rep. (CSR) is the “hub” of communications for customers. He or she is the one who is responsible for the Intranet of the project as part of performing Communications Planning during the Planning Phase. During the Execution Phase this person supervises Information Distribution and Performance Reporting. Finally, during the Close-Out Phase this person ensures Administrative Closure.

    This person also makes sure that everyone is aware of the status of packages coming and going. This is the person who arranges meetings and tracks others down like a bloodhound. So this person interacts most with the Operations Support staff such as shipping and Receiving.

    He/she records and publishes the minutes of meetings, but call this person a “Secretary” at your peril.


  • Intranet Site Map and URL
  • Project Schedule / Calendar
  • Project Contact List
  • Project Distribution List
  • Meeting Minutes
  • Project Status Reports

  • Proof of Delivery
  • Set screen Roles and Deliverables: The Operations Support Team

      Burdman doesn't mention this, but my experience in a large print shops and hollywood studios taught me the importance of Runners, also called “gophers” (as in go for this and that).

      Shipping and Receiving and Incoming Inspection

      I can't tell you how many times having a Proof of Delivery avoided finger pointing and denials. In the web word, “non-repudiation” can mean use of encryption and electronic certificates. It could also mean providing each customer with an user account ID and a password. In the web word, confirmation of receipt can be an email, voicemail, or some other form of communication that can be automatically sent to alert the team when a certain account is used.

      Safety and Environmental Managment

      Someone may be needed to ensure compliance with OSHA, AQMD, carpooling, handicap accessibility, and other governmental regulations, such as filing reports and conducting mandated training.

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    Set screen Roles and Deliverables: Corporate Management

    Corporate management includes the CEO and his office.


  • Corporate Events Calendar
  • Employee Satisfaction surveys
  • Investor Relations
  • Annual reports
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    Legal review is becoming more important considering the privacy and taxation laws associated with eCommerce. The Legal Eagles should also participate in assessment and mitigation of risks faced by the business. What if a customer does not pay? What if a vendor cannot deliver?


  • NonDisclosure Agreements
  • Employment Contracts
  • Vendor Contracts
  • Maintenance (Service Level) Agreements
  • Software Licensing
  • User Agreements
  • Copyright Filings
  • Business Affliation agreements

  • Human Resources

    During the Planning Phase phase the HR specialist performs Organizational Planning for the Project Manger. Later in the Execution Phase HR recruits people for the project (performs Staff Acquisition).

    Some HR people are also trained to do Team Development so that the team comes together better and quicker.


  • Staffing Plan
  • Organization Chart
  • Open Position Descriptions
  • Interviewing Schedules
  • Candidate Resumes
  • New Employee Orientation
  • Paychecks
  • Benefits Statements
  • Team Development Events

  • Procurement

    During the Planning Phase this person clarifies what needs to be purchased and identifies the most appropriate vendors (performs Procurement Planning and Solicitation Planning for the Project Manger). Later in the Execution Phase he/she contacts the vendors and prepares contracts with them (performs Solicitation, Source Selection,and Contract Administration).


  • Approved Vendor List
  • Vendor Profiles
  • Vendor Evaluation Methods
  • Vendor Evaluation Matrix
  • RFP (Request for Proposal)
  • RFQ (Request for Quote)
  • Contracts with Vendors
  • Vendor Extranet logon and usage

  • Accountant

    This person (department) is responsible for integrating estimates from various team leads to performing Cost EstimatingCost Budgeting during the Planning Phase


  • Project Budget
  • Cash Flow Statements
  • Inventory Valuations
  • Profit/Loss Statements
  • Earned Value Analysisanother page on this site
  • Auditor visit schedules

  • Marketing

    This person (department) is responsible for product management -- continuity of product and service offerings and a build-up of recognition and reputation among customers and potential customers.


  • Company logo
  • About the Company
  • Product Line Descriptions
  • Public Relations Plan
  • Advertising
  • Trade shows
  • Customer Satisfaction Ratings
  • Competitive Analysis
  • Potential Customers
  • Market Share / Penetration
  • Press Clippings


    Set screen Roles and Deliverables: Technical Team Supervisors

    These facilitators handle the administrative aspects of the technical talent, making sure that they have what they need to do their jobs. During the Execution Phase these individuals perform Scope Verification and Scope Change Control. Then when things go wrong, they manage Risk Response Control as prescribed in (if they have the foresight to prepare) a Risk Management Plan. More importantly over the long term, these individuals provide the extra effort toward Repeatable process maturity


  • Individual Training Plans
  • Career Development (Performance Reviews)
  • Learning Resources/Library
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    Quality Assurance Lead

    This person performs Quality Planning during the Planning Phase and supervises Quality Assurance during the Execution Phaseprovides an assessment. Note that QA provides a professional assessment of project status. Authority to decide whether to ship something must be delegated by management.


  • Functional Test Plan
  • Performance Test Plan
  • Test Resultsanother page on this site

  • Production Operations Lead

    This person is in charge of all the server equipment and the network infrastructure in the company. Database administrators often report to this person to provide a check and balance for who has control of what the customer sees.


  • Cutover Plan
  • IP Addresses and
    DNS registrationanother page on this site
  • Security Certificatesanother page on this site
  • Backup Scheduleanother page on this site

  • Creative Lead

    This person ensures a consistent level of professionalism. He or she evaluates the artistic merits of work and may even proofread content.


  • Corporate Style Guide (Interface Standards)
  • Templates

  • Development Lead

    This person is responsible for recording requirements.


  • Development Schedule and Scope
  • Code Signatures


    Set screen Roles and Deliverables: Technical Architects

    These individuals are the “Research and Development” arm of the organization. Part of their job is to stay abrest of developments in their speciality area and contribute to their field. They form a Technology Steering Committee. They ensure backward compatibility with previous versions and to allow/enable adaptability in future versions. The complexity of some systems make their work full-time jobs.

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    Test Architect

    The QA Architect ensures the testability of applications.


  • Testability requirements
  • Test Harnesses and Tools
  • Test Casesanother page on this site
  • Bug Reports / Test Resultsanother page on this site

  • Infrastructure Architect

    This person is in charge of setting up all the equipment and the network infrastructure in the company.


  • Equipment Inventory
  • CAD Floorplans with machine names
  • New Equipment purchasing plans
  • Old Equipment retirement plans
  • User Groups and Permissions
  • File share Points
  • Installation Instructions (e.g., Windows 2000another page on this site)

  • Interface Designer

    Yes, really! This is the one person who directly generates products visible to customers (“while everybody else is busy done doing paperwork”). On one extreme, this person and his/her team can blaze ahead directly with customers while everyone tries to find out what happened. On the other extreme, this group can languish under policy restrictions imposed by others.


  • Portfolio
  • Storyboards
  • Demo / reference website
  • Stock library of photos, artwork, sounds, etc.
  • Customized Site assetsanother page on this site

  • Platform Architect

    This person is responsible for articulating the tools and common database schemas to be used throughout the organization.


  • How to Use Supported Tools
  • Tool Evaluations
  • Tool Evaluation Matrix
  • Naming Conventions
  • Database Schemas
  • Reusable Classes, modules, components

  • Set screen Roles: Advisors and Consultants


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    Set screen How: Project Tasks

      Microsoft's IT Tasks

      Task Evidence
      Architect -
      Evaluate -
      Plan -
      Deploy -
      Maintain Service Agreements
      Support -


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    Set screen Joke Break: Types of Project Managers

    If you get in my way, I'll kill you! -- "ideal" project manager

    If you get in my way, you'll kill me! -- somewhat less than ideal project manager

    If I get in my way, I'll kill you! -- somewhat misguided project manager

    If I get in your way, I'll kill you! -- tough project manager (eats glass, cats, etc.)

    If get kill in will way I you. -- dyslexic, functionally illiterate project manager

    I am the way! Kill me if you can! -- messianic project manager

    Get away, I'll kill us all! -- suicidal project manager

    If you kill me, I'll get in your way. -- thoughtful but ineffective project manager

    If I kill you I'll get in your way. -- project manager who has trouble dealing with the obvious

    If you kill me, so what? If you get in my way, who cares? -- weak, uninspired, lackluster project manager

    If I kill me, you'll get your way. -- pragmatic project manager

    If we get in each others' way, who will get killed? -- An utterly confused manager

    Kill me, it's the only way. -- every project manager to date.

    Source unknown


      “A battle plan lasts until contact with the enemy.”
      Napoleon Bonaparte

      Plans are worthless — but planning is everything.”
      —Dwight D. Eisenhower, 17 Nov. '57.

      “Never explain. Your friends don't need it and your enemies don't believe you anyway.”
      —Alfred North Whitehead (1861-1947)

      Time is Nature's way of making sure that everything doesn't happen all at once.

      Indecision is the key to flexibility.

      "Never put off until tomorrow what you can avoid doing altogether."

      "I have not yet begun to procrastinate."

      "There are two rules for ultimate success in life:
        1. Never tell everything you know.

      I love deadlines.
      I especially like the whooshing sound they make as they go flying by.

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    Set screen Whoa: Project Risks

      Here is a list of potential project pitfalls:
      Task SkillPotential Root Cause of Project Failure

      Control & Coordination

    • Unclear or shifting project goals and managerial intentions
    • Unresolved congruence between project benefits and personal aspirations
    • Uncontrolled change propagation and cross-checking
    • Brittle technical architecture
    • Scheduling

    • Inadequate availability of resources when needed
    • Lack of co-ordination of resources and activities
    • Communication

    • Ambiguous and imprecise communication / follow-through
    • Lack of clarity about project status such that the actual progress of projects are not revealed until too late.
    • Unclear understanding of stakeholders and their wants, needs, reactions, and satisfaction
    • Training

    • Insufficient knowledge of the customer industry or internal processes
    • Insufficient skill with the technologies used.
    • Team Building

    • Skills and backgrounds of team members are unidentified and underutilized
    • Festering resentment among team members
    • Conflict Management

    • Undetected inconsistencies in requirements, designs, or implementation
    • Indequate quality assurance/control, resulting in the delivery of products that are unacceptable or unusable.
    • Negotiation

    • Failure to realistically and courageously attack risks
    • Lack of flexibility or openness to improvement
    • Delegation

    • Overwhelming complexity
    • Insufficient tools (automation)
    • Risk Management

    • Poor estimation of duration and costs, leading to projects taking more time and costing more money than expected
    • Insufficient metrics measuring process effectiveness, product tolerances, and project impact
    • The Project Management Scorecard: Measuring the Success of Project Management Solutions (Butterworth-Heinemann, May 1, 2002) by Jack J. Phillips, Timothy W. Bothell, G. Lynne Snead

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    Set screen Tradeoffs - Risk Management

      Project plans define the typical tradeoffs:

      • Time: Schedule (Calendar/Clock Time and deadlines)
      • Resources: (Ingredients) available to a project:
        • Money: “Revenues - Costs = Profits”
        • People (Readiness, Availability, Ability, Creativity, Cooperation)
      • Features of the product - level of complexity

        Risk Evaluation

      1. Define the project goal
      2. Size the project
      3. List the risk factors
      4. Rank them
      5. Compare with last project
      6. Appoint doctors
      Designed to help the team identify priorities, make well-informed and strategic decisions, and prepare for contingencies, this model provides a structured and proactive environment of decisions and actions to continuously assess, prioritize, and deal with project risks.

    • Tracking and maintaining a project plan.
      • Measurement of progress for each dimension: (See Managing Software Progress [VBPMJ article])
        • Percentage of schedule elasped & remaining
        • Percentage of budget used & remaining
        • Percentage of project output completed (earned value) & remaining
        • Actual versus plan/baseline/original estimates
      • The effect of updates to the plan

    The MSF Risk Management Model

    Microsoft's Project 98 Tutorial: Risk Assessment

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    Set screen Project Management Software Tools

      Cartoons from

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    Set screen Best Practices for Project Management

      John Keen's suggestions:

      1. Implement in incremental phases
      2. Start with 1 or 2 non-mission critical systems
      3. Begin with minimal application integration
      4. Understand roles and responsibilities for all affected organizations
      5. Conduct workshops to gather requirements and educate
      6. Include business and technical representatives
      7. Identify key technical challenges & risks
      8. Include all communities in test planning & execution

      From TechRepublic article: “Exchange 2000 Migration: Project Management Best Practices”

      1. Plan the work, utilizing a project definition document.
      2. Create a planning horizon.
      3. Define project management procedures up front.
      4. Look for warning signs.
      5. Ensure that the sponsor approves scope change requests.
      6. Identify risks up front.
      7. Continue to assess potential risks throughout the project.
      8. Resolve issues as quickly as possible.


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