Project Management – Day 3 Waubonsee Community College
Review Waubonsee Community College Project Management Training
Project Management Framework Figure 1-2
The Triple Constraint of Project Management Successful project management means meeting all three goals (scope, time, and cost) and satisfying the project’s sponsor!
Determining the Critical Path for Project X Figure 6-8
Communications Management Waubonsee Community College Project Management Training
Importance of Good Communications • The greatest threat to many projects is a failure to communicate • Our culture does not portray IT professionals as being good communicators • Research shows that IT professionals must be able to communicate effectively to succeed in their positions • Strong verbal skills are a key factor in career advancement for IT professionals
Project Communications Management Processes • Identifying stakeholders:identifying everyone involved in or affected by the project and determining the best ways to manage relationships with them • Planning communications: determining the information and communications needs of the stakeholders • Distributing information: making needed information available to project stakeholders in a timely manner • Managing stakeholder expectations: managing communications to satisfy the needs and expectations of project stakeholders and to resolve issues • Reporting performance: collecting and disseminating performance information, including status reports, progress measurement, and forecasting
Identifying Stakeholders • Recall that the ultimate goal of project management is to meet or exceed stakeholder needs and expectations from a project, so you must first identify who your particular project stakeholders are • Two key outputs of this process include: • Stakeholder register: a public document that includes details related to the identified project stakeholders • Stakeholder management strategy: an approach to help increase the support of stakeholders throughout the project; often includes sensitive information
Planning Communications • Every project should include some type of communications management plan, a document that guides project communications • Creating a stakeholder analysis for project communications also aids in communications planning
Distributing Information • Getting the right information to the right people at the right time and in a useful format is just as important as developing the information in the first place • Important considerations include: • Using technology to enhance information distribution • Formal and informal methods for distributing information
Distributing Information in an Effective and Timely Manner • Don’t bury crucial information • Don’t be afraid to report bad information • Oral communication via meetings and informal talks helps bring important information—good and bad—out into the open
Importance of Face-to-Face Communication • Research says that in a face-to-face interaction: • 58 percent of communication is through body language • 35 percent of communication is through how the words are said • 7 percent of communication is through the content or words that are spoken • Pay attention to more than just the actual words someone is saying • A person’s tone of voice and body language say a lot about how he or she really feels
Encouraging More Face-to-Face Interactions • Short, frequent meetings are often very effective in IT projects • Stand-up meetings force people to focus on what they really need to communicate • Some companies have policies preventing the use of e-mail between certain hours or even entire days of the week
Understanding Group and Individual Communication Needs • People are not interchangeable parts • As illustrated in Brooks’ book The Mythical Man-Month, you cannot assume that a task originally scheduled to take two months of one person’s time can be done in one month by two people • Nine women cannot produce a baby in one month!
Personal Preferences Affect Communication Needs • Introverts like more private communications, while extroverts like to discuss things in public • Intuitive people like to understand the big picture, while sensing people need step-by-step details • Thinkers want to know the logic behind decisions, while feeling people want to know how something affects them personally • Judging people are driven to meet deadlines while perceiving people need more help in developing and following plans
Other Communication Considerations • Rarely does the receiver interpret a message exactly as the sender intended • Geographic location and cultural background affect the complexity of project communications • Different working hours • Language barriers • Different cultural norms
Setting the Stage for Communicating Bad News Dear Mom and Dad, or should I say Grandma & Grandpa, Yes, I am pregnant. No, I’m not married yet since Larry, my boyfriend, is out of a job. Larry’s employers just don’t seem to appreciate the skills he has learned since he quit high school. Larry looks much younger than you, Dad, even though he is three years older. I’m quitting college and getting a job so we can get an apartment before the baby is born. I found a beautiful apartment above a 24-hour auto repair garage with good insulation so the exhaust fumes and noise won’t bother us. I’m very happy. I thought you would be too. Love, Ashley P.S. There is no Larry. I’m not pregnant. I’m not getting married. I’m not quitting school, but I am getting a “D” in Chemistry. I just wanted you to have some perspective.
Determining the Number of Communications Channels • As the number of people involved increases, the complexity of communications increases because there are more communications channels or pathways through which people can communicate • Number of communications channels = n(n-1) / 2 where n is the number of people involved
Managing Stakeholders • Project managers must understand and work with various stakeholders • Need to devise a way to identify and resolve issues • An expectations management matrix can help clarify expectations
Reporting Performance Performance reporting keeps stakeholders informed about how resources are being used to achieve project objectives: • Status reports describe where the project stands at a specific point in time • Progress reports describe what the project team has accomplished during a certain period of time • Forecasts predict future project status and progress based on past information and trends
Suggestions for Improving Project Communications • Manage conflicts effectively • Develop better communication skills • Run effective meetings • Use e-mail and other technologies effectively • Use templates for project communications
Conflict Handling Modes • Confrontation: directly face a conflict using a problem-solving approach • Compromise: use a give-and-take approach • Smoothing: de-emphasize areas of difference and emphasize areas of agreement • Forcing: the win-lose approach • Withdrawal: retreat or withdraw from an actual or potential disagreement • Collaborating: decision makers incorporate different viewpoints and insights to develop consensus and commitment
Conflict Can Be Good • Conflict often produces important results, such as new ideas, better alternatives, and motivation to work harder and more collaboratively • Groupthink: conformance to the values or ethical standards of a group; groupthink can develop if there are no conflicting viewpoints • Research suggests that task-related conflict often improves team performance, but emotional conflict often depresses team performance
Developing Better Communication Skills • As organizations become more global, they realize they must invest in ways to improve communication with people from different countries and cultures • It takes leadership to improve communication
Lessons-Learned Reports • The project manager and project team members should each prepare a lessons-learned report • A reflective statement that documents important things an individual learned from working on the project • The project manager often combines information from all of the lessons-learned reports into a project summary report
Risk Management Waubonsee Community College Project Management Training
The Importance of Project Risk Management • Project risk management is the art and science of identifying, analyzing, and responding to risk throughout the life of a project and in the best interests of meeting project objectives • Risk management is often overlooked in projects, but it can help improve project success by helping select good projects, determining project scope, and developing realistic estimates
Research Shows Need to Improve Project Risk Management • Study by Ibbs and Kwak shows risk has the lowest maturity rating of all knowledge areas • A similar survey was completed with software development companies in Mauritius, South Africa in 2003, and risk management also had the lowest maturity • KLCI study shows the benefits of following good software risk management practices
Project Management Maturity by Industry Group and Knowledge Area* KEY: 1 = LOWEST MATURITY RATING 5 = HIGHEST MATURITY RATING *Ibbs, C. William and Young HoonKwak. “Assessing Project Management Maturity,” Project Management Journal (March 2000).
Benefits from Software Risk Management Practices* *Kulik, Peter and Catherine Weber, “Software Risk Management Practices – 2001,” KLCI Research Group (August 2001).
Negative Risk • A dictionary definition of risk is “the possibility of loss or injury” • Negative risk involves understanding potential problems that might occur in the project and how they might impede project success • Negative risk management is like a form of insurance; it is an investment
Risk Can Be Positive • Positive risks are risks that result in good things happening; sometimes called opportunities • A general definition of project risk is an uncertainty that can have a negative or positive effect on meeting project objectives • The goal of project risk management is to minimize potential negative risks while maximizing potential positive risks
Risk Utility • Risk utility or risk tolerance is the amount of satisfaction or pleasure received from a potential payoff • Utility rises at a decreasing rate for people who are risk-averse • Those who are risk-seeking have a higher tolerance for risk, and their satisfaction increases when more payoff is at stake • The risk-neutral approach achieves a balance between risk and payoff
Project Risk Management Processes • Planning risk management: deciding how to approach and plan the risk management activities for the project • Identifying risks: determining which risks are likely to affect a project and documenting the characteristics of each • Performing qualitative risk analysis: prioritizing risks based on their probability and impact of occurrence
Project Risk Management Processes (continued) • Performing quantitative risk analysis:numerically estimating the effects of risks on project objectives • Planning risk responses:taking steps to enhance opportunities and reduce threats to meeting project objectives • Monitoring and controlling risks: monitoring identified and residual risks, identifying new risks, carrying out risk response plans, and evaluating the effectiveness of risk strategies throughout the life of the project
Project Risk Management Summary Figure 11-3
Risk Management Planning • The main output of risk management planning is a risk management plan, a plan that documents the procedures for managing risk throughout a project • The project team should review project documents and understand the organization’s and the sponsor’s approaches to risk • The level of detail will vary with the needs of the project
Topics Addressed in a Risk Management Plan • Methodology • Roles and responsibilities • Budget and schedule • Risk categories • Risk probability and impact • Risk documentation
Contingency and Fallback Plans, Contingency Reserves • Contingency plans are predefined actions that the project team will take if an identified risk event occurs • Fallback plans are developed for risks that have a high impact on meeting project objectives and are put into effect if attempts to reduce the risk are not effective • Contingency reserves or allowances are provisions held by the project sponsor or organization to reduce the risk of cost or schedule overruns to an acceptable level
Common Sources of Risk in Information Technology Projects • Several studies show that IT projects share some common sources of risk • The Standish Group developed an IT success potential scoring sheet based on potential risks • Other broad categories of risk help identify potential risks