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Fundamentals of Project Management
By Jeff Crump

Projects begin because a problem creates a need. In order to solve the problem or fulfill the need, you need to formulate a measurable goal. Once a goal is set, you can develop a strategy to meet it. A project is the strategy to meet this goal.

All projects must be defined in terms of Time, Budget, and Performance. This is commonly referred to as the ‘Triple Constraints’. The one constraint that has the highest priority becomes the driver of the project.

Triple Constraints

Triple Constraints Triangle

The key to the project is to determine what the constraints are and their priority. How do you do that? ASK QUESTIONS!

Ask a comparative question.
  ° If we had to sacrifice performance to meet the deadline, what would the customer want you to do?
Ask a “What if” question.
  ° What if we eliminated build management or online forms, how will that impact the project?
Have we thought of other ways to solve the problem?
Why do they want this done?
If time, money and resource limitations were not a problem, what would the customer want?
How would the customer rank this project with other projects that are happening?
What is the most likely thing to go wrong with this project, and how can you avoid it?

A preacher and a cab driver reach the pearly gates of heaven. The cabbie gets through and is presented with a silk robe and a golden staff. When the preacher enters he is presented with a cotton robe and a bronze staff. The preacher asks why the cabbie was presented with higher quality material. The preacher said he was responsible for bringing many more people into the fold. Saint Peter simply said, “Yes this is true but when you preached, people snoozed. When the cabbie drove, people PRAYED!

Moral of the story: In the end it’s the results that count!

Ten Commandments of Project Management
I. Set a clear project goal. (Covey: Begin with the end in mind.)
II. Determine the project objectives. (Sub-units or Sub-goals)
III. Establish checkpoints (milestones), activities, relationships (how tasks are interrelated), and time estimates.
IV. Draw a picture of the project schedule (MS Project).
V. Direct people individually and as a project team.
VI. Reinforce commitment (walk the talk) and excitement of the project team.
VII. Keep everyone connected with the project informed.
VIII. Build agreements that vitalize (win/win) team members.
IX. Empower yourself and others of the project team.
X. Encourage risk taking and creativity but manage it closely.

Project Planning
Project planning is perhaps the most important activity of any project. A lack of proper and thorough planning will rapidly become obvious as the project moves into the subsequent phases. As a result, much time and energy must be dedicated to this activity. The typical components of project planning include:

Create a Project Management Plan ? Include all the associated project documentation noted in the following bullet points plus be sure to include the contact information for your project team members.
Project Summary ? The Project Manager should document the problem that the team is trying to resolve. Reference to triple constraints and their priority should be made.
Project Requirements ? Time, costs, and performance.
Milestones ? Be sure to celebrate along the way.
Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) ? The WBS are the lower level, detailed tasks that make up the real work that has to be performed during the project. The depth of the WBS is dependent on what level of clarity and direction is required or desired.
Network Diagram ? Having they physical layout always adds clarity and value.
Budget ? How much money and time has been contracted for? Are there travel and expense caps that must be adhered to?
Project Management Structure ? Communicate project management and team hierarchy.
Logistical Support ? Ensure you understand the work environment and the recommended travel and lodging information, if applicable.
Acceptance Plan ? This ensures all parties are working from not only the same set of work plans but also the acceptance of the end result.
Standards for Property Control and Security ? What system ID’s have been created for use? Are access badges required?
Project Reviews / Status Reports ? Schedule regular, weekly meetings for entire project team. Coordinate additional resources as needed.

Enterprise Change Management Specific Questions
As the ECM project manager you should be able to answer the following questions. If you can’t then now is the time to get the answers.

Do the project’s objectives fit into the overall IT and / or business strategy?
When is the project due? How is the date determined?
What would be the result of late delivery?
What would be the result of limited success (functionality)?
Could there be any ‘political’ implications of the project’s failure?
Is the project a part of a larger program?
Does the supplier, if any, have a reputation for delivering high quality?
Does the contract provide enough detail to identify what the vendor, if any, will deliver?
Does the project have the wholehearted support of the management team?
What’s the commitment level of the user community?
Have the training requirements been identified and addressed?
How clearly are the project’s objectives defined?
Does the project team understand the project methodology?
What are the skills of the project team?
Does the project team need training?
How many separate users are involved and impacted?
Have the technical options been weighed?
Are the requirements clear and concise?
How many sites are being impacted?
Who will be responsible for testing?
Have requirements for long-term operations, maintenance, and support been identified?

This is not an exhaustive list but it does give an idea of the breadth of knowledge and awareness required to effectively manage an Enterprise Change Management solution project.

The Process of Change
After reviewing the other information at EnterpriseCM.com it should be evident that a concerted amount of effort has to be targeted toward understanding and managing the process of change itself within your organization.

Process of Change Diagram

The first question is ‘why change?’; this leads to consideration of where the organization is and what outcomes are desired, the planning and implementation of a change effort, and finally a review of the outcome. The results of the review, combined with the impact of other changes in the organization and external developments, will eventually give rise to another cycle of change. In addition, it is likely that at any given time there will be more than one change process going on in an organization.

After a major change effort, everyone in the organization will probably be hoping for a period of stability. But periods of ‘steady state’ are unlikely to last long. In the public sector, new initiatives show no sign of slackening, and the pressure of competition is ever-present for all organizations. For both the public and private sectors, developments in IT are constantly suggesting new options for improvements in internal administration and service delivery.

Everyone has lived through attempts to introduce changes into the organization, some more successful than others. So, what distinguishes the successes from the failures?

Corporate Preconditions:

• Business strategy defined
• Alignment to the business strategy
• Roles and responsibilities understood
• Skills and capabilities in place
• Organizational learning and communication
• A framework for managing risk

Critical Success Factors:

• Change definition
• Management commitment
• Organizational complexity recognized
• Change owner nominated
• The right project team
• Communication and involvement
• Staff development and support
• Institutionalization of change

Without these, a change effort is likely to fail. The responsibility to effectively manage a project falls onto the project manager. Oftentimes the project manager simply has to take it upon himself/herself to seek out the knowledge needed to be successful. Hopefully, this document provides the baseline of knowledge and helps trigger thoughts that will eventually help you be successful.


Jeff Crump is a tech-savvy leader with nearly 20 years of information technology experience including enterprise change management, ChangeMan consulting, project management, customer relationship management, sales and business development, managing international professional services groups, and delivery efforts for high-tech commercial and government customers. Jeff is a Director of EnterpriseCM, Inc. (ECMI), a collaboration of powerful technology, process improvement expertise, and veteran change management professionals. ECMI brings together Enterprise Change Management thought leadership and real-world implementation experience to offer customers educated, informed and seasoned consultation services. Jeff can be contacted Toll Free: +1.866.788.5383, Direct: +1.931.788.5383, E-mail: JCrump@EnterpriseCM.com, Web: www.EnterpriseCM.com.






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