Projects at Work

Opinions

Provocative thinking from the field.


Who Cares About Tasks?

- by Dan Patterson

Wouldn't it be better if scheduling tools focused on deliverables rather than the work — the activities and tasks — needed to deliver them? Execution is about creating value, and stakeholders care little about the busy details. Project managers who get this distinction right will reap the benefits of more realistic and achievable plans.

Pseudo PMOs?

- by Guy Barlow

Most large organizations have established project, program or portfolio management offices, but there is a disconnect between many PMOs and the wider businesses they support, according to a group of senior executives and academics that studied the trend. They recommend that some organizations would be better served by a decentralized approach that creates “pseudo PMOs.”

Don’t Shoehorn Your Projects

- by Ken Rock

The best process for your project should be determined by careful consideration of key factors, including overall complexity, the level of risk involved, and time-to-market requirements. Often, a flexible hybrid approach fits best, but it must agreed upon by management and the team before the project starts.

Programmers, Testers, Users

- by Ireti Oke-Pollard, MBA, PMP

Programming and testing are two completely different skills. When it comes to validating that requirements have been met and new issues haven’t been created, programmers need to step away from their own work; testers need to think like users and treat the system like a mystery.

Planning By Consensus

- by Dan Patterson

So much hinges on the project schedule, yet so few team members contribute to it. Whatsmore, they typically don’t care about critical paths, constraints and other building blocks; they just want to know “what, where and when.” We're overdue for consensus-based planning tools that bridge execution and analytics.

No Problem Project Management

- by David Schmaltz

The problem-solving skills on which project managers largely build their reputations might be greatly improved by mastering the challenge of problem-selecting instead. In short, the difficulty isn’t the problem; it's how we’re coping with it. Radical acceptance is a start.

Wanted: EPMO Leaders

- by ProjectsatWork.com

Most large global organizations will rely on “activist” enterprise program management office (EPMO) leaders by 2017, according to research analyst Gartner. The emerging role is a response to the need to significantly improve strategic execution, and increased pressure toward innovation and differentiation.

Who Else Owns Your Project?

- by Andrea Brockmeier

Yes, project success or failure is ultimately the responsibility of you, the project manager. You’re in charge of everything, from planning and reporting to monitoring risk, budget and schedule. But there are other people who must take ownership of their parts of the project. And it’s also your job to make that clear.

Tracking PM-BA Trends

- by Andrea Brockmeier, PMP, Vicki James, PMP, CBAP, Elizabeth Larson, PMP, CBAP, CSM, and Richard Larson, PMP, CBAP

Project managers and business analysts share many challenges and concerns, particularly in the areas of requirements, communication, stakeholders and professional development. Here are seven emerging trends, ranging from smaller projects to fewer emails, that BAs and PMs should be tracking and leveraging in 2014.

Do Away With QA (Conclusion)

- by David Ward

Organizations are releasing software as soon as possible, skimping on Quality Assurance, squeezing testers, and pointing fingers when it all goes wrong. As our series concludes, we look at the final two reasons that they should just do away with software QA completely (but not really).

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EVENTS

Anwar A: "i like your point on #4 and #7" on Choose or Lose
October 20, 2014

Christopher C: "Jen - overall a great touchstone for a stuck process. A couple of minor points .…" on Choose or Lose
October 20, 2014

Jim B: "Jen, thank you for a great synopsis of practical advice. As PMs we generally ma…" on Choose or Lose
October 20, 2014

Bruce H: "Interesting example - "I'd rather know the status of my homebuilding project in…" on Who Cares About Tasks?
October 19, 2014

 

TOP CONTRIBUTORS

Dave Prior

Agile Consultant, BigVisible Solutions
Dave Prior, PMP, CST, MBA is an Agile Consultant for BigVisible where he…

Bart Gerardi

Sr. Technical Program Manager, Amazon.com
Bart has been an ecommerce program manager for 15 years, and can’t…

Andy Jordan

President, Roffensian Consulting Inc.
Andy Jordan is a well known author and speaker on project management and…

Vicki Wrona

President, Forward Momentum, LLC
Vicki Wrona is the founder and President of Forward Momentum, a PMI Regi…

Janis Rizzuto

Contributing Editor, ProjectsAtWork
Janis has been writing for ProjectsAtWork for more than a decade, starti…

Aaron Smith

Editorial Director, ProjectsAtWork.com
Aaron has been the editor of ProjectsAtWork since 2001, leading its evol…

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