Category: "Best Practices"

Better Public Speaking

Announcements, PM Articles, Best Practices, Project Communications, PM Skills Development
Source: Mind Tools - eNewsletter 262 Whether we're talking in a team meeting or presenting in front of an audience, we all have to speak in public from time to time. We can do this well or we can do this badly, and the outcome strongly affects the way… more »

4PM.com - Project Planning: The Highly Creative First Step

PM Articles, Best Practices, Project Planning
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: In project planning, the PM should lay the groundwork for controlling the scope, begin the process of controlling expectations and also build his/ her credibility with the sponsor. Achieving those… more »

4PM.com - Critical Path: Optimizing Your Project Schedules

PM Articles, Best Practices, Project Planning
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: Everybody's heard of the critical path but too few project managers actually use it to shorten the duration of their projects and identify which problems they have to address and which they can safely… more »

4PM.com - Moments of Truth with Your Project Team

Project Coaching & Mentoring, PM Articles, Best Practices, Project Communications
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: If you don't do a good job on the three moments of truth with your project team, managing them will be like marching behind the elephants in the circus parade. We walk you through the three moments of… more »

4PM.com - Work Packages: The Key to Crystal Clear Assignments and Team Member Commitment

PM Articles, Best Practices, Project Scope Management
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: The work package is certainly not a sexy project management tool and maybe that's why too few project managers use them. We get a number of benefits when we use a work package to be crystal clear about… more »

4PM.com - Project Estimating: Good, Bad & "in the Ballpark"

PM Articles, Best Practices, Project Estimating
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: To survive the estimating process, successful project managers use a sequence of four estimating techniques at various stages of the project. These techniques don't make everyone happy but at least… more »

4PM.com - The 5 Dumbest Things a Project Manager Can Say.

PM Articles, Best Practices, Project Communications
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: Chris Pimbock, our expert PM, listens in on project meetings with gritted teeth as one project manager after another says something truly stupid to executives, team members and stakeholders. Listen in… more »

4PM.com - Post-Project Reviews: Lessons Never Learned

PM Articles, Best Practices, Lessons Learnt
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: Lessons learned processes usually produce little more than conflict. Project management processes don't improve and the organization repeats the same mistakes over and over. A living lessons learned… more »

4PM.com - Initiating Projects with a Statement of Work (SOW)

PM Articles, Best Practices, Project Scope Management
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: The SOW is often treated as just another form to fill out. But when it’s used properly , it helps us control expectations early and set unambiguous targets as well as reduce uncertainty. Read the… more »

4PM.com - Project Planning: A Creative and Highly Political Task

PM Articles, Best Practices, Project Planning
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: Project managers must apply a different tool set when they plan a new project with executives. The thinking techniques are much more strategic, require big picture vision and include more than a little… more »

4PM.com - Custom Tailor the Plan for Your Boss or the Client

PM Articles, Best Practices, Project Planning
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: Project managers build their credibility when they spend a lot of time listening during the planning process and then pick out the key achievements or business results that the sponsor wants. Then they… more »

4PM.com - WBS - Project Design Issue or Clerical Task

PM Articles, Best Practices
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: Very often the quality of the team member assignments, the accuracy of the tracking and the very success or failure of a project depends on the work breakdown structure (WBS). Learn about some of the… more »

4PM.com - Status Reports That Stupefy

PM Articles, Best Practices, Project Reporting
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: Do your status reports leave executives with less decision making data than they had before you started to talk? See a bad status report and then learn the best practices. All too often Executives… more »

Individual Worth and Professionalism

Project Management, Value Management, Best Practices, HR Management
Source - Article by Bob Andrew One of the most subjective and misunderstood words in the English language is ‘value’. Engineers define value as function (or performance) per unit cost. The cheaper an item is, for a given function, the higher its… more »

Are Best Practices Best?

Project Management, Project Management Methodology, Best Practices
Source - Article by Bob Andrew Project management teams are generally requested, encouraged, and often instructed, to ensure that ‘best practices’ are used. These practices are techniques, processes, methods, activities that current ‘conventional… more »

10 Red Flags That Shout 'Stay Away From This Project!'

IT Project Management, PM Articles, Best Practices
Source: Article by Justin James Justin James is an employee of Levit & James, Inc. in a multi-disciplinary role that combines programming, network management, and systems administration. He has been blogging at TechRepublic since 2005. Read his… more »

Project Teamwork Does not Have To Be An Illusion

Announcements, Project Coaching & Mentoring, PM Articles, Best Practices, HR Management
Source - Article by Bob Andrew Derren Brown is a British illusionist, well known for his startling mind-reading acts shown on television around the world. Although he says his results are a combination of “magic, suggestion, psychology, misdirection… more »

Are Good Project Managers Just Lucky?

Project Management, Project Management Methodology, PM Articles, Best Practices
Source - Article by Bob Andrew Some people say jokingly, or perhaps not so jokingly, that there are no good project managers - only lucky ones. It could be that these people use the phrase as a ‘catch all’, when they really don’t know why or how they… more »

The Pragmatic Manager: Who's in Charge of Quality?

IT Project Management, PM Articles, Best Practices
Source & Content Detail: e-Mail Newsletter from the Rothman Consulting Group President - Johanna Rothman. About the Author: Johanna Rothman is a pragmatic thinker about project management, the founder and principal of Rothman Consulting Group… more »

"Fast-Food" Project Management

Project Management, IT Project Management, Best Practices
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: When our project planning with customers is like letting them order at a fast-food drive-up window, we get an endless list of requirements. Then we can't control scope, finish on time or produce any… more »

Should You Factor Positive Risk into Project Planning?

Best Practices, Project Scope Management
Source: TenStep Article by Tom Mochal Summary: Even though you may commonly think of project risks as having a negative connotation, you can also use risk management to identify and quantify potential positive risk. You can determine if you want to… more »

Gathering Project Requirements

PM Articles, Best Practices, Project Planning, Project Communications, Project Scope Management
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: How you gather project requirements affects the amount of scope creep on the project and the odds of finishing on time and within budget. It also determines whether you have happy stakeholders. Read… more »

WBS: Project Design Issue or Clerical Task

PM Articles, Best Practices
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Summary: The WBS is often the launching pad for project failure because people think it is a "to do" list and bigger is better. Read the whole article here more »

Communicate Proactively Based on Your Project Size

Best Practices, Progress Meetings, Project Communications, Project Reporting
Source: TenStep Article by Tom Mochal Communication - Just Do It! Project managers must get over the fear and reluctance to communicate proactively. Communication is a powerful arrow in your project management quiver. I have seen projects where the… more »

Status Reports and Status Meetings

Time Management, Best Practices, Progress Meetings, Project Communications, Project Reporting
Source: TenStep Article by Tom Mochal Practice Good Meeting Fundamentals In general, all meetings should have an agenda. The creation of the agenda takes a little extra work, but it can be as simple as writing it in an email and sending it to the… more »

Managing Contractors

Project Management, Best Practices
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Managing Contractors There are lots of ways to work with vendors on your projects and several contract types to choose from. But the best of all is a performance & achievement "triangle" that ties… more »

Check Your Project for These Four Warning Signs

Project Management, Project Risk Management, Best Practices
Source: TenStep Article by Tom Mochal Obviously your project is in trouble if you are missing deadlines and consistently exceeding the estimated effort and cost to get work done. However, you may have a project that actually appears to be on schedule,… more »

Does Your Project Need a Quality Process or Quality Activities?

Best Practices, Quality Management
Source: TenStep Article by Tom Mochal Summary: Quality management processes must be scaled to the size of the project. Remember that there is a cost to managing quality, as well as a benefit. The effort and time required to manage quality must not… more »

4PM.com - Influencing, Persuading and Selling in Project Management

Project Management, PM Articles, Best Practices
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Selling Projects Project managers need soft skills and effective techniques to secure approval and gain support from stakeholders and commitment from their team. The foundation is an understanding of what… more »

4PM.com - Most Popular Articles

PM Articles, Best Practices
Source: Articles by Dick Billows of 4PM Multiple Project Fantasy Land Projects multiply like weeds in an organization, they devour the time of technical staff and line supervisors leaving little time for people's "real jobs." Yet despite a project… more »
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