In my previous life as Project Manger I always held strong few ideas that have helped my projects to reach safe harbor.
Dear Fellow Innovator,
In my previous life as Project Manger, I always held strong few ideas that have helped my projects to reach safe harbor.
If you compare them to the ocean of teachings of the PMI book,
they are little things, but to me, they are like lighthouses:
they bring me home.
I often found experienced PMs and Project Management Courses that miss some of them, probably because deemed obvious, so let recap them here:
1) There are 3 levels of planning:
long, medium and short term.
You must have a clear understanding of the goal of each one:
Long Term: activities planning
Medium term: resources activation
Short term: people activation
2) You need 3 “dates” to define the status of a deliverable:
as planned, as forecasted, as delivered.
As planned: is the original plan and the benchmark. It’s static
As forecast: is the revision of the planned date. Updates change it.
As delivered: is what was really done. It’s static.
Beware those systems that do not bear them.
3) As a minimum you need 3 delivery metrics:
completeness, timeliness, accuracy.
If you have a clear measure of the percentage of deliverables delivered, how many have been delivered on time, and how close to planned have been delivered, you are in control.
Then ask for “S-curves” and all the rest.
4) Don’t just look at your backlog, look-ahead.
When you look at your ability to deliver, don’t just look at what was due for today (backlog) but also at what will be due in the next days (look ahead). If your rhythm of delivery is not enough… time to change
5) There are two ways to assure delivery:
feedback control and redundancy
this is also called the A-Team rule: check how your Plan A is performing but be ready with your plan B.
6) You can manage risk only if you understand its 3 components: Probability, Percentage, Personal
Probability: is your gut about tomorrow’s weather
Percentage: is about how many bad weather days you got so far
Personal: is about the personal taste of who will suffer the consequences (some people likes rainy days)
7) You have to monitor all the 3 kinds of information:
system, formal, un-formal.
you must have a good understanding of where are the information needed to control your project: whether into a person’s mind, a document or a repository.
I have stolen much of these concepts to Senior Planners of Nuovo Pignone. I would like to take this chance to thank them.
And, as usual, if you want to know more about practical ideas and best practices for your PMO...
Just give me a call at +39 349 648 2225
(you have plenty of time: now, at breakfast time, when you drive to work, wait at the airport...)
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