Project Management

What is a Project

Let's start with the official PMI definition: A Project is a temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product, service, or result. It has a definite beginning and end (repetitive elements may be present but has fundamental uniqueness).
Simply put,  a project is not the same as an everyday task.
A project
  • aims to create something new,
  • has a timeline,
  • is not an everyday task, so involves unfamiliarity 
  • requires resources, often from cross-functional teams
  • has a sponsor
Properly managing a project needs efforts, resources, and different skills.
If you are not creating something new, if you are already familiar, you are in
no hurry to get there - would you want to go through the rigors of
project management  

What is Project Management

The application of knowledge, skills, tools, and technique to manage activities to meet project requirements

Simply put - Its the way you structure and manage the tasks, resources needed to achieve the required outcomes

Why should a project be formally managed

Before we go thru what all needs to be done to successfully manage a project, let's review why does it need to be done, why all the structure is required. A formally managed project will have  :

  • Proactive risk management - project involves unfamiliarity, risks are bound to be there

  • Good communication flow - you are working with a few people in the project team you will have other stakeholders, to manage it all you would need to communicate well 

  • Predictability & Control - projects involve resource costs and other expenses, when you spend, you need to know - how are you doing, you want to stay in control 

  • Better resource tracking & utilization - cross-functional resources are often difficult to get, and hence should be properly managed

  • Better output - the PM structure helps you achieve on time, desirable outputs with in the cost

Who is a Project Manager

A project manager ( PM ) is a person responsible to achieve project objectives. 

A PM would need to (but not limited to):

  • identify requirements

  • establish clear & achievable objectives

  • balancing the competing demands of scope, time, cost & quality

  • Address the various needs, concerns, and expectations of stakeholders 

 

What skills should a project manager have 

The skills required can be numerous, I will enumerate some that I believe are a must :

  • Inspiring leadership

  • Ability to deal with ambiguity and clarifying for others

  • Adaptability

  • Ownership

  • Needs to be organized

  • Problem-solving

  • Communication, communication, communication

 I have not included the standard technical skills /competencies of scheduling, cost management, scope management etc.. as those are easily learned if you have other skills 

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