Discussion peers QSO34

business discussion question and need guidance to help me learn.

Please follow the rubrics
Requirements: 3-4 paragraphs each peer
PROJECT MANAGEMENT PEERS’ DISCUSSION
Please create three substantial paragraphs response for each peer and add in-text citations and references from the material provided.
In your responses to your peers, address the following:
Compare and contrast your example with those of your peers. What were some of the similarities between your project and theirs? Did you share any obstacles or challenges? If so, what were they?
Keep in mind that all your discussion posts should follow APA guidelines.
PEER 1
Abdisalam
Hello everyone! My name is Abdisalam, and I have some knowledge and experience with project management. I have taken a few classes in the past and I have also been a part of a few projects that required project management. I am hoping to learn more about project management and how to properly execute and complete a project. One example of a project that I recently worked on was for a university course. The purpose of the project was to create a business plan for a fictitious company. We had to create a business model, research the industry, and create a budget and marketing plan. The project manager and team members were selected by the professor, who assigned specific tasks to each team member. My role was to create the budget and marketing plan for the business. One of the obstacles I had to overcome was ensuring that the budget was realistic and that our marketing plan was appropriate for the industry. We had to do a lot of research and make sure that all the information we used was accurate and up to date. I was able to successfully complete the project and we were able to present our business plan to the class. One of the lessons I learned from this project was the importance of research and making sure that all the information used is accurate and up to date.
PEER 2
Mary
My name is Mary Jo and I reside in Massachusetts. I am currently employed as a Sr. Administrative Assistant at a business consulting firm. After being away from school for many years, last year I decided to return to college to finish my bachelor’s degree in business administration.
My experience with project management thus far has been minimal. I usually participate in only one segment of the entire project.  My focus has mainly been the organization of information and scheduling of regular team meetings.  I would like to learn more about project management as a whole and how to keep each piece of the project working cohesively on track, and on budget.
In my current position, my direct supervisor is responsible for initiating new client projects.  As his assistant I am responsible for scheduling meetings, taking meeting minutes, and setting up and organizing all intake information. When I first started in the position, I had to learn new software and shadowed the former assistant in order to learn the intake process with new clients. After two years in the position, I have added my own tools to the process using Excel spreadsheets and a new labeling system for client records for filing purposes.
I am excited to be taking this class and look forward to learning PM with all of you!
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Module One: Project Management FundamentalsModule One: Project Management FundamentalsProject management is both an art and a science. To effectively manage projects, practitioners need a unique combination ofskills, expertise, and knowledge, to help teams bring their projects to completion in the most productive and efficient waypossible. A talented project manager who can employ the concrete tools, techniques, and methodologies—as well as the less-concrete “interpersonal skills”—can be the difference between a successful project and an unmitigated disaster.Learning OutcomesAfter completing this module, you should be able to:1. Define the project manager’s role2. Understand the role that stakeholders play in projects3. Understand common project management terminology4. List the five stages of project management5. Explain the general progression of the project life cycle1-1 Module One Pre-testModule One Pre-testClick “Next” to access the Module One Pre-test1-2 What is a Project?What is a Project?Project: A temporary endeavor with defined start and end dates that creates a unique product or service.–CompTIA®Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
A project is a series of carefully planned activities that creates a unique end result. A project is not an ongoing process, likeproduction or operations—each project has a defined beginning and end. There is a specified budget and schedule for theproject, and each project is designed with a specific output in mind.The following are examples of a project:Projects vary in size, function, and complexity. Organizations launch projects to drive some type of change in the way theyoperate. Projects move business entities from their current state to a new (and hopefully improved) future state. Projectsgenerate value for an organization. In some cases, projects are directly profitable, but often project value is less explicit (e.g.,improved efficiency or compliance). Each project has a unique reason for existing, a business purpose to fulfill. Projects produceoutputs. These outputs are usually a new product, service, result, or capability. Sometimes project deliverables are absorbedinto operations by another department.Projects are executed within an organizational setting and, as such, must fit into the management structure of the organization.To be of value, projects must fit within both tactical (short-term) and strategic (long-term) corporate goals. Individual projectsgenerally represent only part of the greater whole of an organization’s short- or long-term plans. While a project may beimportant for its own merits, it is not more important than the organization’s strategic mission and overall goals.Project PropertiesNo two projects are identical, and a similar project can look very different when managed by one person or firm to the next. Nomatter the purpose of a project, there are common features in how a project is conceptualized and constructed. The fourfeatures listed below are distinctive properties of a project:Click on each of the numbered boxes below for more information.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Projects are unique.Projects span a temporary duration.Projects are executed for a specific business purpose.Projects satisfy stakeholder requirements.Review CheckpointTo test your understanding of the content presented in this assignment, please click on the Questions icon below. Click yourselected response to see feedback displayed below it. If you have trouble answering, you are always free to return to this or anyassignment to re-read the material.1. Which of the following statements is true?a. A project is an ongoing process, like production or operations.Incorrect. Try again.b. A project is designed with a specific output in mind.Correct. Each project is designed with a specific output in mind.c. A project may be deemed so critical to a company that it supersedes the organization’s strategic mission.Incorrect. Try again.d. Projects must fit within an organization’s tactical goals but need not fit within an organization’s strategic goals.Incorrect. Try again.2. Which of the following scenarios might initiate a project?Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
a. A regulatory commission has announced a new regulation.Incorrect. Try again.b. A current product is not working as designed.Incorrect. Try again.c. A survey of stakeholders has uncovered new needs and requirements.Incorrect. Try again.d. All of the above.Correct. A project may be introduced to comply with regulatory requirements, to repair deliverables, or to fulfill stakeholders’needs and requirements, so all of the options listed are valid reasons to initiate a project.1-3 Who Are Project Stakeholders?Who Are Project Stakeholders?Project management involves coordinating and considering the needs of project stakeholders. A stakeholder may be anindividual person, an organization, or a larger entity that has an interest in the project or is actively involved in the project insome way. Essentially, project stakeholders are those who can affect the project, who can be affected by the project, or whosimply believe they can be affected by the project.Stakeholders can be divided into two groups:Click on each of the images below for more information.Positive stakeholders, who will benefit from the project’s success.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Negative stakeholders, who view a negative outcome as a success.Parties who might be considered stakeholders of a project include the following:Because stakeholders may be able to exert influence over a project or its results, their interests should be carefully monitored toensure positive project conclusions.Review CheckpointTo test your understanding of the content presented in this assignment, please click on the Questions icon below. Click yourselected response to see feedback displayed below it. If you have trouble answering, you are always free to return to this or anyassignment to re-read the material.1. True or False?The people who actually perform project work are not project stakeholders.Potential Project Stakeholdersthe projectmanagerthe project managementteamsponsorsshareholdersthe governmentsenior executivessupplierstrade associationsco-workerslendersthe mediacustomersanalyststhe publicprospective clientsfuture employeesthe communitythe project managementofficeCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
a. TrueIncorrect. Try again.b. FalseCorrect. This is a false statement. Project stakeholders are those who can affect the project, who can be affected by the project,or who simply believe they can be affected by the project. This also includes the project management team and othersperforming the actual project work.2. True or False?Negative stakeholders want the project to fail.a. TrueCorrect. This is a true statement. Negative stakeholders want the project to fail, while positive stakeholders want the project tosucceed.b. FalseIncorrect. Try again.1-4 Who Manages a Project?Who Manages a Project?Project managers act as the “pivot point” for effective project management, working with many practitioners to achieveobjectives and ensure alignment. To be an effective project manager, it is important to understand the project’s role in thebroader organizational context. Each project will be subject to prioritization within its organization. The forces (problems,opportunities, and requirements) that drive an organization will help determine the investment, timing, and emphasis that will beplaced on a given project.A project manager fills numerous roles within the project, the organization, and the industry at large. These roles aresummarized in the image below.Click on each of the circles below for more information.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Project Management OfficeSo who manages a project? The easy answer would be that project managers manage projects. However, there are often manyothers involved in managing a project besides just the project manager. Often, a project management office (PMO) is chargedwith supporting project managers and sometimes managing projects on its own.Specifically, a project management office may be tasked with the following responsibilities:Establishing prioritiesManaging the organization’s portfolio of projectsAllocating resourcesOrganizing technical training for team membersDeveloping project forms and templatesForecasting and planningThe PMO may play a large part in developing a project management system, ensuring that the projects within an organizationfollow similar protocols or helping project managers successfully adapt processes, tools, and techniques to manage projects.A PMO can exist in any organizational structure, large or small, although the authority of the PMO may increase in larger ormore complex organizations.Review CheckpointOn the projectLead the team to achieve project objectives and meetexpectationsBalance constraintsCommunicate with the project sponsor, team, and stakeholdersBalance conflicting or competing stakeholder goalsIn the organizationInteract and negotiate with other managers for resourcedemands, funding, and distribution capabilitiesEnsure alignment of the project’s goals with the organization’sgoals and other needsAdvocate for project management within the organizationIncrease project management skills and competency within theorganizationTransfer knowledge and lessons learned to othersIn the industry and across disciplinesApply industry standards and breakthroughs to organizationaldeliverablesProvide professional development and training in projectmanagement and related disciplinesDisseminate knowledge at the local, national, and internationallevelsCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
To test your understanding of the content presented in this assignment, please click on the Questions icon below. Click yourselected response to see feedback displayed below it. If you have trouble answering, you are always free to return to this or anyassignment to re-read the material.1. True or False?Project managers strive to meet all stakeholder goals.a. TrueIncorrect. Try again.b. FalseCorrect. This is a false statement. Stakeholders have many goals, which are often conflicting or competing instead of perfectlyaligned. Stakeholders can also have goals that harm the project, since they may want the project to fail. Therefore, projectmanagers strive to balance stakeholders’ goals, rather than to meet them all.2. A project management office (PMO) may be responsible for which of the following?a. managing projectsIncorrect. Try again.b. supporting project managersIncorrect. Try again.c. organizing technical training for team membersIncorrect. Try again.d. all of the aboveCorrect. Oftentimes, project managers collectively manage projects through a project management office. However, they are notrequired for project management. Project management requires budgets for time and cost in addition to a project charter, anoverarching project management plan, and baselines and measurements to compare against results.1-5 What is Project Management?What is Project Management?Project management is the application of resources and the administration of knowledge, tools, and skills to meet projectobjectives.In today’s world, project managers face a unique challenge—balancing the structure of project management with actually gettingproject work accomplished. They have to prepare plans in enough detail to be helpful while simultaneously adjusting processesand practices to a level that matches the needs and complexity of the project.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
An effective project manager must recognize that neither time nor other resources are infinite, so they must be carefullymanaged. The art of project management is in realizing that a project’s constraints—scope, quality, schedule, cost, resources,and risk—are interconnected and must be thoughtfully addressed to ensure success. Changing one constraint will most likelyaffect the other constraints and the quality of the deliverable. Project managers are constantly competing for resources.Project management is the art of balancing project constraints to ensure project success. The launching of a project does notguarantee its success.Planning and DocumentationProject managers require some basic but essential information to manage projects effectively. Therefore, all projects shouldhave the following:Click on each of the numbered boxes below for more information.a project charteran overarching project management planbudgets for time and costCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
baselines and measurements to compare against resultsSome projects can be managed without rigorous planning. However, insufficient documentation leads to risk. Consider a projectmanager who has under-planned for their project. What happens if this person is later unavailable or leaves the organizationentirely? Without sufficient project documents, the project may come to an abrupt halt without this person’s presence. Yet,consider a smaller-scale or less-complex project: if a project manager were to force his or her project team to follow extensiveproject processes and requirements, it could hinder the project. Furthermore, smaller projects usually have fewer resourcesavailable, so from a monetary and time perspective, there may not be enough resources to do extensive project planning orproject work.Ultimately, project management involves developing plans and documentation that reflect project needs, such as the size of thebudget, the size of the team, the time frame for the project, the complexity of the schedule, the project’s strategic importance tothe organization, and the change impact to the organization. Still, regardless of adjustments made based on project needs,sufficient planning and critical documents are required to secure an organization’s commitment to the project.Project managers working on smaller projects may still need to provide company management with information on budgetrequirements and project progress. Key stakeholders may still want to see a charter or project plan to understand the strategicimportance of the project to the organization. And project managers still need to communicate project results and due dates toproject participants.Review CheckpointTo test your understanding of the content presented in this assignment, please click on the Questions icon below. Click yourselected response to see feedback displayed below it. If you have trouble answering, you are always free to return to this or anyassignment to re-read the material.1. True or False?Project management focuses on one constraint at a time.a. TrueIncorrect. Try again.b. FalseCorrect. This is a false statement. Project management is a constant balancing act between all project constraints: scope,quality, schedule, budget, resources, and risk.2. Project management requires all of the following, except for what?a. project charterIncorrect. Try again.b. overarching project management planIncorrect. Try again.c. project management officeCorrect. Oftentimes, project managers are supported by a project management office (PMO). However, a PMO is not requiredfor project management. Project management requires budgets for time and cost in addition to a project charter, an overarchingproject management plan, and baselines and measurements to compare against results.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
d. baselines and measurements to compare against resultsIncorrect. Try again.1-6 Project Management TerminologyProject Management TerminologyAll projects are different, and there is no universal method for project management. Because of these differences, most projectmanagers and organizations use their own terminology to discuss project management. The important thing is using commonand consistent language within a team.This course will explain complex and interrelated concepts using numerous resources. Therefore, it’s important to establishbaseline terminology to ensure comprehension.The video below will define five key terms according to their usage in this course:1. projects2. project phases3. project stages4. project life cycle5. product life cycleVideo: Key Terms in Project ManagementTerminologyA project is a series of carefully planned activities with a defined beginning and end that creates a unique end result and isdesigned with a specific output in mind. Regardless of industry or business sector, a project typically follows a generic path:A project phase is a collection of activities that produces one or more deliverables. That sounds like the definition of a project,doesn’t it? That is because phases are essentially “mini projects” within a project. Each phase can be treated as a separateproject that drives forward momentum under the umbrella of an overreaching project.Phases usually have specific names, such as Phase 1, Phase 2, Phase 3; or Phase A, Phase B, Phase C; or concept phase,development phase, launch phase. They may have specific durations, like one week, one month or one quarter. They shouldalso have defined starting criteria (like authorization documents) and exiting criteria (like deliverables), which indicate when toenter or exit a phase.It’s important to note that projects can have any number of phases.In fact, very simple projects may be single-phase projects.During each phase, certain processes will occur that guide the project along its path:The PMBOK Guide; organizes these processes into “process groups”: Initiating, Planning, Executing, Monitoring &Controlling, and Closing. Examples of processes within these process groups might include identifying stakeholders;developing the project management plan; acquiring resources; monitoring risks; and closing the project or phase.Essentially, these groups categorize the related processes that occur during a project.For the sake of comprehension, this course will refer to project stages as the periods of time when certain processesgenerally occur.For multi-phase projects, these project stages will occur within each phase of the project.Although the stages must be performed in some sequence, they usually overlap and are iterative.Combining these concepts brings us to the idea of the project life cycle. For multi-phase projects, we use the term “project lifecycle” to describe the complete series of phases and repeating project stages that compose a project.This is a highly specific way of illustrating the generic project path:Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
As a product or service moves from concept, to design, to launch, to ongoing operations, to divestment or closure, numerousproject life cycles may occur under the larger umbrella of a product life cycle.A product life cycle may represent numerous affiliated projects (like conducting marketing research, installing software,etc.) that each have their own separate project life cycles.Other Key Terms in Project ManagementThere are several other definitions that we should cover to familiarize you with the terms we’ll use throughout this course:TermDefinitionScopeAn explanation of the work included in the projectBaselineA tool used to compare expected performance to actual results. Baselines are often created tomeasure a project’s scope, cost, and schedule performance.BudgetAn aggregation of the expected costs to complete the projectCharterA foundational document that sets the initial expectations for the projectNetwork DiagramA graphic representation of the schedule that shows the sequence of project activitiesWork BreakdownStructure (WBS)A hierarchical breakdown of the work needed to complete a projectResponsibilityAssignment Matrix(RAM)A chart that assigns responsibility for project work to project participantsRisk RegisterA document that tracks risks, the planned responses for risks, and the results of implementing thoseresponsesProgramA group of projects that, because they are related in some way, can be managed together, to reapbenefits that would not be available if the projects were managed separatelyPortfolioA group of projects and/or programs that are undertaken to meet an organization’s strategicobjectives1-7 Exercise: Project Management TerminologyExercise: Project Management Terminology1-8 The Project Life CycleThe Project Life CycleAs it progresses, a project goes through a series of events known as a life cycle. A project’s life cycle is a series of activities thattakes the project closer and closer to completion and to (hopefully) successfully meeting its objectives. The project life cycle ismade up of project phases.A project phase is a related group of activities that the project team must perform to reach a predetermined set of results. Theboundaries between phases are usually set by the points where different organizations or different skill sets are required tocontribute to a project, and the end of a phase is usually marked by the production of a deliverable. A project may have anynumber of phases, and a very simple project may have only one phase.Project managers may need certain completed documents before entering a phase as well as certain completed deliverablesbefore exiting a phase. These inputs and outputs are represented in the illustration below:Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
The way that practitioners move the project through this path—and the methodology they use to do so—will depend on anumber of elements and factors that are unique to the project and its environment.Project Life Cycle GovernanceProject managers need to understand the project life cycle so they can meet each phase with appropriate project governance.Project managers exhibit project governance by defining specific solutions for the following variables of each project:Each phase’s technical workThe deliverables due (that is to say, what outcomes will be “delivered” to the customer or sponsor)How deliverables will be assessed and reviewedWho is involved in each phaseHow each phase is controlledA project will often be assessed before the next phase begins. The purpose of assessment is to discover problems or errors inthe project while they are still relatively inexpensive to fix. If the project was designed to fulfill objectives that are no longerrequired, or if the risk in continuing is too great, the next phase might not receive authorization.Charting Life Cycle TrendsAs a project advances toward its completion, there are certain trends and “generalities” that recur regularly.In most cases, as a project moves from beginning to end, the cost of changes associated with project work increases, while theinfluence of the stakeholders decreases. The risks of a project failing are also greatest at the beginning of the project, with aprogressively higher likelihood of completion as the project proceeds.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Overall cost and staffing levels over the project life cycle are illustrated in the graphic below. In the initial phase of a project, costand staffing levels are low, but trend upward as the project approaches its middle and then decrease as the project nearscompletion.(It should be noted, however, that adaptive life cycle approaches attempt to temper these trends to ease the problems and risksthat may accompany them. Adaptive life cycles will be discussed in a subsequent assignment in this course.)Project Life Cycles vs. Product Life CyclesIt’s important to emphasize the differences between a project life cycle and a product life cycle. A product life cycle covers thelife of a product or service as it moves from concept, to design, to launch, to ongoing operations, and (at the end stage) todivestment or closure. So a product life cycle can have a number of affiliated projects that each have their own separate projectlife cycles, which may or may not be connected with or be similar to the product life cycle.1-9 Project Life Cycle ApproachesCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Project Life Cycle ApproachesThere are a number of different life cycle approaches that project practitioners can use to guide projects to completion. Thesealternatives can be placed on a continuum, with a predictive approach at one end of the spectrum and an adaptive approach onthe other.Click on each of the headings below for more information.Predictive Life CyclesIn a predictive life cycle approach, a comprehensive plan is created at the beginning of a project, and any changes tothe plan are carefully evaluated and controlled. (Although an extensive plan is developed at project Initiation, rollingwave planning and progressive elaboration are often employed to assist in project execution.) Scope, time, and costestimates are determined early in project plan development, and a series of sequential stages are initiated, executed,and monitored to complete project objectives.Predictive cycles tend to be described as Waterfall approaches because once a stage is complete, practitioners tendnot to revisit the unique activities in that stage again; this is similar to the idea that, once water travels over a waterfall, itdoes not travel back uphill.Predictive approaches are frequently used when project deliverables are well-understood or when deliverables need tobe completely finished before they can be used by stakeholders.Key elements of predictive life cycles:Detailed plans are created early in the process, and project activities are synchronized with those plans.Changes (especially scope, schedule, and budget changes) are viewed as impediments to project success andare avoided as much as possible.A single deliverable (or a very small number of deliverables) is produced at the end of the project.Stakeholders are involved only at specific points or milestones of the project.Iterative CyclesIterative cycles are often described as “mini-Waterfall” approaches—practitioners using this approach run through allproject stages sequentially, but they may repeat stages several times as more about a project becomes known.In an iterative cycle, a finished product or outcome (based on the scope details known at the project’s inception) iscreated, but product functionality can be added in successive iterations. Schedule and cost estimates are allowed toprogressively elaborate throughout the project, but changes to project scope are tightly controlled, to limit excessivemodification during project execution.Iterative life cycles are often used in especially large or complex projects, or when scope may need to be modified dueto an extended project timeframe.Key elements of iterative life cycles:Product scope for a final product is determined early in the project, but features and functions can be added initerative approach cycles.Limited changes (to the scope, schedule, and budget) are allowed at specified project intervals.Stakeholders are integrated as regular contributors to the project.Risk management and cost controls are progressively elaborated as iterations occur.Hybrid Life CyclesHybrid life cycles are a combination of predictive and adaptive approaches—their affinity for either end of this spectrumwill depend on the circumstances and environment of the project. For example, in some instances, a project may mirroran adaptive approach in the way that it handles stakeholder involvement but may resemble a predictive approach inhow it controls project risks and requirements.Key elements of hybrid life cycles:Elements of different life cycle approaches may be combined to benefit the project, its objectives, and outcomes—elements that are well-known or fixed in scope may follow a predictive (or iterative) approach while those that areCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
more “fluid” may follow an adaptive or incremental approach.Incremental Life CyclesIn incremental life cycles, practitioners repeat project stages several times to add enhancements to a product or serviceunder development, but delivery of a final project output is still constrained to a specific timeframe. Elaboration of thescope details is delayed until the beginning of each increment, and full functionality of the final deliverable is onlypossible after the last project increment.Incremental life cycles are often employed in projects where the interim deliverables developed could be used bystakeholders in some manner before a finished product is delivered.Key elements of incremental life cycles:Product requirements are loosely defined at project inception and are refined in each project increment.Changes are allowed at frequent intervals throughout the project.Working interim deliverables may be available for customer consumption at the end of increments, but fullfunctionality is not available until project closure.Stakeholders are involved in an ongoing, regular basis.Adaptive Life CyclesAdaptive life cycles are similar to incremental life cycles in that they enhance products or services progressively, butthey do so in very short increments of fixed time and/or cost.In an adaptive life cycle, an initial high-level list of requirements is developed by stakeholders, but the team is thenallowed to choose which requirements to work on in each iteration. Stakeholders are continuously involved in therefinement of requirements and the review of deliverables, and changes are embraced as indicators of stakeholders’up-to-the-moment needs.Adaptive approaches are particularly useful in business environments where customer requests change rapidly or whenthe entire scope of a project is difficult to define up front. Teams utilizing adaptive life cycle approaches tend to employAgile methodologies because these techniques allow team members to adapt quickly to changing customerrequirements without completely disrupting their project work.Key elements of adaptive life cycles:Requirements are uncovered and refined at the beginning of each interval, due to continuous stakeholderengagement and interaction.Delivery of working, functional deliverables occurs on a regular basis.Change management, cost control, and risk management practices evolve as needed throughout the project.There is no one ideal project life cycle approach; a project team will choose the appropriate approach based on its environment,culture, and needs. In fact, some practitioners may even choose to use a different approach for different parts of a project, toguarantee that a project produces the outcomes it was intended to.1-10 Exercise: Project Life Cycle ApproachesExercise: Project Life Cycle Approaches1-11 Project StagesProject StagesBecause all projects are different, there is no standard way to manage a project. However, projects do have certain “stages” incommon. Identifying and naming these project stages makes it possible to discuss the accumulated knowledge of countlessproject managers. There are five project stages: Initiating, Planning, Executing, Monitoring and Controlling, and Closing.All project managers employ the project stages differently—but their ability to adapt these stages depends on the authoritygranted to them by their organizations.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Project StagesInitiating StageThe part of the project that focuses on defining what the project will attempt to accomplishPlanning StageThe part of the project where the project manager and project team plan the work that will help theproject achieve its objectivesExecuting StageThe part of the project where the “actual work” is doneMonitoring andControlling StageThe part of the project where work is compared to expectations to ensure it is proceeding asexpectedClosing StageThe part of the project where the project manager and project team finalize all activities andformally close the projectIt is important to clarify that these five stages are not synonymous with project phases. Projects may have numerous phases—adesign phase, a development phase, a testing phase, etc. Each phase is essentially a “mini project,” and the five project stagesoccur in each phase.The Interaction of Project StagesAlthough the stages must be performed in some sequence, they usually overlap and are iterative. The outputs for one stage willbecome the input for another.The graph below shows the pattern of the five stages over the duration of a project. The chart and information emphasizes theoverlapping nature of the stages and the manner in which the output of some stages becomes the input for others.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Image adaptedfrom Project Management Institute, A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) — Sixth Edition, 2017, Page 548.1-12 Project Management Process GroupsProject Management Process GroupsOver the years, the project-oriented processes have been distilled and clustered into five project management process groups,as defined by the Project Management Institute (PMI®). The five process groups categorize the processes that occur in eachproject stage and guide project managers through the project life cycle.Click on each of the circles below for more information.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Initiating Those processes performed to define a new project or a new phase of an existingproject by obtaining authorization to start the project or phase [PMI® definition].Initiating processes launch a project or phase. They are often performed by anorganization or program outside of the project’s scope of control but may, in somecases, include the project manager and other key team members.During the Initiating stage, documentation emerges that outlines the project’sobjectives and explains how they relate to those of the organization at large. Aproject manager will be selected (if he or she has not already been assigned aspart of pre-project preparation), and the initial resources required for investmentwill be identified.Project boundaries are defined, project stakeholders are identified and cataloged,and applicable organizational process assets (such as procedures, guidelines,standards, and templates) are assessed for their relevance and usefulness to theproject.The project charter will be developed and approved, signaling the formalauthorization of a project and authorizing the project manager to allocateresources for project execution. An assumption log and stakeholder register maybe created to chronicle important information that practitioners will need tosuccessfully complete their work.Initiating processes may be reexamined at the beginning of each project phase toensure that assumptions, information, and expectations are still valid. In suchevaluations, specific stakeholders will be critical to the molding and refinement ofplans to keep the project on track.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Planning Those processes required to establish the scope of the project, refine theobjectives, and define the course of action required to attain the objectives that theproject was undertaken to achieve [PMI® definition].Once a project is formally authorized and its scope and objectives are broadlydefined, a detailed breakdown of the project (or project phase) occurs in thePlanning stage. It is also during Planning that the project’s scope is refined andfurther focused to assist in guiding project activities.To kick off the planning processes, the project manager creates a projectmanagement plan, which describes:The project life cycle and development approach that will be usedThe project management processes selected for inclusion (and theirimplementation)The process for maintaining the integrity of the performance measurementbaselinesHow change and configuration management will be carried outHow and when management reviews will be conductedAs part of this explanation, the following subsidiary plans and baselines arecreated and included in the project management plan, to the extent that they areneeded:scope management plan and scope baselineschedule management plan and schedule baselinecost management plan and cost baselinerequirements management planquality management planresource management plancommunications management planrisk management planprocurement management planstakeholder engagement planAdditional supporting project documents (such as activity lists, change logs, teamcharters, and others) will also be developed and refined as the project advancesand practitioners learn more about their project. Updates for these documents (andfor the project management plan) will be subject to the change control system toensure that any modifications will be applied with the best interests of the entireproject in mind.In planning a project, stakeholder involvement can be crucial. Project managerswill want to ensure that they create an environment that includes relevantstakeholder input and that continually engages stakeholders during projectplanning, execution, and closure.When preliminary planning is completed, the project management plan is approvedby the appropriate parties and used as a baseline for comparison of projectprogress and results. Key Benefit of This GroupDefines the “pathway” that practitioners will take to complete the project orphase successfullyExecuting Those processes performed to complete the work defined in the projectmanagement plan to satisfy the project requirements [PMI® definition].All processes performed to actually implement a project plan or life cycle phase areconsidered Executing processes.Executing essentially encompasses any actions necessary to fulfill the workdefined in the scope statement. Its processes include:Coordinating project workAcquiring project resourcesPerforming quality assuranceRecruiting and developing the project teamManaging communicationsAdministering responses to risksWorking with stakeholdersManaging project knowledge and lessons learned, andInteracting with sellers or potential sellersThe majority of the project budget is used during this phase, and the workconducted may generate change requests (which may trigger modifications toplans, documents, and baselines).The execution processes result in the deliverables that must be produced tocomplete the project. Key Benefit of This GroupConfirms that the work needed to meet the objectives and requirements ofthe project is completed according to the project plansMonitoring & Controlling Those processes required to track, review, and regulate the progress andperformance of the project; identify any areas in which changes to the plan arerequired; and initiate the corresponding changes [PMI® definition].Monitoring and Controlling occurs throughout the project or project phase. Whenyou think of this process group, assume performance checking —an action thatrequires effective change management and attention to detail.When monitoring and controlling a project, team members collect information onperformance and progress, and compare it to plans and baselines. They identifyand manage change (including alterations to scope, schedules, and budgets) andcoordinate change requests to ensure that adjustments in one project area do notadversely affect others.The continuous monitoring and controlling of project activities guarantees that aproject will be completed according to plans, and allows the project team toforecast and circumvent any potential problems that may influence results andoutcomes. Additionally, it assures interested parties that the project manager andproject team are well-informed, in charge, and guiding the project to a successfulresolution.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Each of these process groups can be broken into specific component processes with particular inputs and outputs. Thesecomponent processes are further sorted by PMI into their PMBOK® Guide knowledge areas.1-13 Project Management Knowledge AreasProject Management Knowledge AreasThe process groups intersect with the 10 knowledge areas that PMI® uses to further categorize and describe projectmanagement processes, depending on the type of constraint or baseline that the process is designed to manage:Click on each of the knowledge areas in the graphic below for more information.Closing Those processes performed to complete or close a project formally, phase, orcontract [PMI® definition].Closing is the final process group. It ensures that all of the processes needed tocomplete a project, phase, or contract have indeed been done to satisfaction andcan be considered “closed.” It provides formal agreement among all affectedparties that work has been appropriately delivered, evaluated, and finalized (orterminated in the case of aborted or canceled projects). It guarantees that all “looseends” are settled, project information is archived, and resources are released andavailable for new activities and exercises. Key Benefit of This GroupCertifies that contracts (or legal agreements), phases, and/or projects areofficially and properly closedCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Project Integration ManagementA project management knowledge area that includes the processes and activities to identify,define, combine, unify, and coordinate the various processes and project managementactivities within the project management process groups. [PMI® definition]Project Scope ManagementA project management knowledge area that includes the processes required to ensure thatthe project includes all the work required, and only the work required, to complete the projectsuccessfully. [PMI® definition]Project Schedule ManagementCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
A project management knowledge area that includes the processes required to manage thetimely completion of the project. [PMI® definition]Project Cost ManagementA project management knowledge area that includes the processes involved in planning,estimating, budgeting, financing, funding, managing, and controlling costs so the project canbe completed within the approved budget. [PMI® definition]Project Quality ManagementA project management knowledge area that includes the processes for incorporating theorganization’s quality policy regarding planning, managing, and controlling project andproduct quality requirements, in order to meet stakeholders’ expectations. [PMI® definition]Project Resource ManagementA project management knowledge area that includes the processes to identify, acquire, andmanage the resources needed for the successful completion of the project. [PMI® definition]Project Communications ManagementA project management knowledge area that includes the processes required to ensuretimely and appropriate planning, collection, creation, distribution, storage, retrieval,management, control, monitoring, and ultimate disposition of project information. [PMI®definition]Project Risk ManagementA project management knowledge area that includes the processes of conducting riskmanagement planning, identification, analysis, response planning, response implementation,and monitoring risk on a project. [PMI® definition]Project Procurement ManagementA project management knowledge area that includes the processes necessary to purchaseor acquire products, services, or results needed from outside the project team. [PMI®definition]Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
1-14 Agile Project ManagementAgile Project ManagementAn Agile approach is a specific form of adaptive life cycle. It is often used as an “umbrella term” to encompass several differentmethodologies (such as Scrum, Extreme Programming, Dynamic Systems Development Method, and Feature-drivenDevelopment) that practitioners can use to manage projects.Some large corporations have seen the value of Agile principles, not only in project management, but also as a managementphilosophy. Other firms have been less receptive to Agile, and some have tried it and been disappointed with the results.Agile’s emphasis on self-organizing teams and decentralized decision-making can be problematic for organizations withhierarchical management processes. Some managers, conditioned to elaborate documentation, can struggle with Agile’spreference for face-to-face communication and simplicity in documenting plans and progress. But for those organizations with aninnate ability to cope with changing requirements from customers and markets (which is a key feature of Agile), the approachrepresents an opportunity to gain a competitive advantage over their rivals.Agile Development CycleThe Agile development cycle contains six “stages.”Click on each of the headings below for more information.Stage 1Creating a Product Vision and Product BacklogThe Agile development cycle begins with the Agile team and customers establishing a clear vision of what the productshould be. This vision is expressed in a collection of customer requirements called features or stories. Stories are nottechnical specifications of the product’s size, volume, or performance—instead, they are high-level descriptions of whatthe user wants the product to do. As such, stories are specifically worded to reflect the customer’s intended use and tokeep the product focused on meeting customer needs rather than meeting technical specifications.Stories are often captured on 3″x5” index cards to limit the amount of space available to document requirements.Limiting the available space ensures that the story remains simple and concise and that the requirement description isfocused.Example of a story on an index cardProject Stakeholder ManagementA project management knowledge area that includes the processes required to identify thepeople, groups, or organizations that could impact or be impacted by the project, to analyzestakeholder expectations and their impact on the project, and to develop appropriatemanagement strategies for effectively engaging stakeholders in project decisions andexecution. [PMI® definition]Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Agile product owners compile stories into a product backlog. The product owner, as the “keeper” of the product backlog,continually updates and prioritizes this list, acting on the customer’s behalf to ensure that the highest priority items aredelivered first. The product owner refines the highest priority requirements (and, therefore, those that are likely to beimplemented first) to a greater degree and leaves requirements of lower priority to be refined later. The product backlogmay also include requirements that are necessary for the creation and improvement of the product, but that may not bevisible to the product’s customer.The product owner then sets the boundaries for the project—what will be delivered, who will be involved, and how theproject team will work together. These boundaries are not developed in detail; they include only enough documentationand advanced planning so that the output produces value for the customer. This plan determines how many iterationscan be completed before the product will be released to the customer and focuses on increments that meet customerrequirements and deliver business value. It also creates a timebox that constrains the time allotted for the project’scompletion and helps guard against an indiscriminate expansion of scope.Stage 2Planning an IterationThe product owner then convenes a meeting with the development team to plan the iterations for the project. Theproduct owner discusses the vision for the product, the customer requirements, and the priorities for satisfying thoserequirements. He or she answers any questions the team may have and provides any necessary clarification orelaboration. Often, the product owner is asked to present the goal of the iteration as a newspaper headline to conveythe vision for the iteration quickly and create a shared understanding and focus for team members.Team members then estimate the amount of work that they believe each story will require. These estimates are oftenset, not as absolute time amounts (like hours or minutes), but rather as story points that compare requirements inrelation to each other. Because product developers are individuals that work at different rates based on their experienceand effort, estimating tasks in hours or minutes will vary depending on which individual is performing the work. Usingstory points to estimate time is meant to be an independent measure, regardless of who is performing the task. A storyestimated at 20 story points should take twice as much work as a story worth 10 story points, which would take twice asmuch work as a story estimated at five story points. This allows the team to estimate the amount of work it will need todo based on how “big” the task will be, not on how fast it is thought an individual can do the work.Team members then select those items from the product backlog that they can complete within the time frame for theiteration and break the items into the tasks needed to satisfy the requirements. They compile the tasks into a task listthat they will use as an inventory of the work in the iteration. The tasks are written in the technical language that theteam will use to satisfy the requirements. Tasks are often written on the back of the index cards of the customer storiesthey will address; this allows matching of the tasks to the requirements if needed.Example of a task on the back of index cardCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
The team selects the items from the product backlog that have the highest priority and that can be completed within thecurrent iteration. Any additional items of lower priority that can also be accomplished in the remaining iteration time areincluded, but any items that the team would be unable to complete are returned to the product backlog to bereprioritized for subsequent iterations.Agile teams must be very careful not to include too many tasks in a given iteration. Iterations should be balanced so thatthe team continues to satisfy requirements but does not take on so much work that members need to put in long hoursto accomplish their goals. The amount of work that a team can accomplish in a given iteration is its velocity. Agile teamsneed to plan their iterations at a velocity that could be maintained indefinitely. Doing so will ensure that the team doesnot exhaust itself in each iteration.Stage 3Executing the Work in an IterationAfter the iteration is planned, the project team must ensure that work is completed. Individuals on Agile teams takeresponsibility for finishing their work on each iteration. Daily stand-ups help to keep team members focused. They are15-minute meetings attended by all team members in which each team member must explain:1. What he or she accomplished yesterday2. What he or she is working on today3. What issues are impeding work progressThese meetings not only make completed work visible to team members but also make sure relevant information isshared on a regular basis. They create peer pressure among team members; each team member is expected to showprogress each day and is held accountable by other team members (not by the product owner or other stakeholders) forgetting work done.Teams can demonstrate their progress to stakeholders on story boards. Two of the most commonly used storyboardsare burndown charts and burn-up charts. Burndown charts show how many tasks the team has completed each dayand how many tasks remain until the iteration is done. Burndown charts are often drawn as line charts, with time listedon the x-axis and the number of tasks on the y-axis. As the project progresses, the slope of the line decreases until itintersects with the x-axis at the completion of the iteration. Some teams track both the planned burndown and the actualburndown to show how close they will be to an expected iteration completion date.Burndown chartCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Burn-up charts also show team progress but show the accumulation of completed stories rather than the number ofstories yet to be completed. The slope of the line in a burn-up chart increases (instead of decreases) to show teamprogress.Burn-up chartStage 4Reviewing the Product Created in an IterationCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Reviewing the Product Created in an IterationAt the completion of each iteration, the team meets with the product owner, customers, and other stakeholders todemonstrate the products they created in the iteration. These iteration reviews are short meetings (roughly two-to-fourhours in length) that present team results as simply as possible, with little or no fanfare or complex presentations. Theteam presents complete working products—not prototypes or documentation describing how the product would work—to customers and stakeholders for review and analysis.Stakeholders and customers ask questions about the product and provide feedback, which the team then translates intonew customer stories and adds to the product backlog for inclusion in subsequent iterations. The lessons learned fromiteration reviews allow products to evolve as users and customers interact with working products and voice newexpectations and needs.Stage 5Reviewing the Iteration’s ProcessesWhen iteration review meetings are complete, teams then turn their attention to an analysis of project dynamics: howwell team members worked together and how well their processes worked. These iteration retrospectives allow teams torevise their development processes before continuing into subsequent iterations, by analyzing:How well the product worked, from both the customer’s perspective and the technical point of viewHow well the processes used to create the product workedHow well the team interacted within the iterationHow well the project met the organization’s intended goalThese retrospective meetings are usually one-to-three hours in length and provide the feedback the team needs toadapt its working structure and its relationships before new iterations or projects begin.Change ControlThe Agile methodology is designed to accommodate change, but that doesn’t mean that changes are introduced withoutregard to structure. Iterations are planned to deliver solutions to specific customer needs; adding additional requests toan ongoing iteration will complicate the iteration planning and delay work already in progress. Any requests for changeare presented to the product owner, who then adds them to the product backlog. Agile practitioners incorporate changeand make adjustments between iterations, not within an iteration.Stage 6Beginning the Next Iteration or Releasing the Product to the CustomerIn this stage, the project team either releases the product to the customer or begins the next iteration in the project.Release PlanningThe development cycle previously described is part of a larger organizational cycle—the release cycle. The releasecycle specifies when an organization will release products to its customers. A release plan documents the productrelease dates; these dates may be set by either:deciding what date an organization wants to release a product (based on market research or customer requests),then determining how many features can be completed before that date, ordeciding how many features to include in a new product, then determining how long it will take to complete thosefeatures.Release plans become more detailed as Agile teams mature. As teams complete more iterations, their velocitybecomes better understood, and release dates can be estimated with greater accuracy. Once a product is released, theorganization reviews its product roadmap and begins to develop new products in a new round of release planning.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
( Note: Although the Agile “stages” have been presented here in a linear format, it is important to note that there is significantoverlap and several feedback loops among the stages, so the Agile “process” is much more cyclical and iterative than linear.)1-15 Agile vs. Waterfall Project ManagementAgile vs. Waterfall Project ManagementThere is a clear difference in the philosophy underlying Agile and that of traditional Waterfall project management.The Waterfall project management model envisions a project as a series of sequential steps, beginning with the statement ofcustomer requirements. The project is planned upfront and then monitored and controlled throughout the process. Once a stepis completed, it is not revisited. The project can be pictured as a one-way process, much like water coursing over a waterfall—once the water passes over the waterfall, it does not return.The Waterfall Project Management ProcessCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Agile, in contrast, begins with the idea that customers can’t identify all requirements at the start of the project. Instead, a seriesof initial requirements or user stories are surfaced, and features are prioritized. The customer continues to participate with theAgile team through a series of iterative cycles of planning and development with a goal of quick releases.An Agile Project Management Cycle Note: The “Plan Project” and “Design, Develop, and Test Product” portions of this cycle may be completed numerous timesbefore a product is ready for release.Flipping the TriangleAgile can be seen as having “flipped the triangle”—in a typical Waterfall project, the team begins with fixed requirements andadjusts the variables of resources and schedule; but in a “flipped” Agile environment, the team starts with a fixed schedule andresources, and the variables are the features that the customer wants or needs.Contrasting MethodsCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Waterfall and Agile project management differ in the methods they employ as well.Click on each of the headings below for more information.PlanningDocumentationCustomersChange managementProject life cycleHuman resourcesRisk managementTestingWaterfallAgileEstablishes requirements at the start of the project Estimates the cost and schedule of the projectUses highly disciplined planning to control the projectEstablishes cost and schedule at the start of theprojectBegins with user goals and tasks (“user stories”),then focuses on surfacing features through theprocess (rather than “pre-planning” them)Responds to changing requirements as the projectevolvesWaterfallAgilePrepares a series of formal writtendocumentsRelies on visual documentationWaterfallAgileDepends on heavy customer involvement in theplanning phase but has only limited customerinvolvement after the planning phaseRelies on customer participation throughout theprojectWaterfallAgileUses a formal integrated control process to reworkrequirementsAdds the cost of changes to the overall budgetIncorporates changes through iterative andincremental developmentUses prioritized product backlogs for managingchangeBuilds the cost of changes into the iterative processWaterfallAgileEmploys distinct cycle phasesCompletes tasks in a sequenced orderDoes not revisit a phase once it has been completedUses a series of rapid iterations with design/build/testsegments aimed at incremental releasesMay revisit work or work phases as neededWaterfallAgileEmploys a project manager to direct, manage,monitor, and control workMakes use of a hierarchical structure of roles andresponsibilitiesUses an Agile team leader to coach, facilitate, andprotect the teamUtilizes a cross-functional, often co-located, teamAvoids creating a hierarchy of rolesWaterfallAgileEmbraces a formal risk management process (riskidentification, qualitative and quantitative analysis,risk response planning)Monitors and controls work in precise stepsAddresses risk through daily team status meetingsand a retrospective meetingEmploys constant feedback cycles to identify,monitor, and respond to riskWaterfallAgileCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
1-16 Organizational Project ManagementOrganizational Project ManagementTo adequately manage its projects, an organization may need to be selective of the projects or accounts it will pursue or fund. Insome circumstances, an organization will be able to decide very easily whether a project should be pursued: for example,organizations facing changing software standards may decide quickly that they should dedicate resources to technologyupgrades. But when organizations need to make choices between several competing projects that seem—at first glance—to beof comparable importance, they will need to decide on a project selection process that prioritizes some projects over others.To help ensure that their projects align with their goals and objectives, organizations often employ organizational projectmanagement to achieve their aims. The organizational project management framework aligns portfolio management, programmanagement, project management, and operations into a coherent whole to execute business plans and meet requirements.Programs and PortfoliosProjects, although they are complete entities in and of themselves, may be compiled into larger groups and managed in acoordinated way. As a project manager, it is important to understand how the project fits into this larger organizational structure.When projects are grouped together in a coordinated way (because they have similar attributes or goals), these groups are oftencharacterized as programs.Programs can then be grouped together into an organization’s portfolio of projects. The collected programs only need to berelated in that they meet the strategic business objectives of the organization.Tests for appropriate results at the end of theprocessExecutes frequent testing throughout the projectUtilizes test-driven development as part of thecreation of resultsCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Coordination and AlignmentCare must be taken to ensure that projects, programs, and portfolios are coordinated and aligned to meet as many needs aspossible with the fewest complications. One way to guarantee this coordination and alignment is to remember the roles thatportfolio management, program management, and project management play within an organization. According to the ProjectManagement Institute®:To put it another way, portfolio management ensures that the right programs and projects get done, while program and projectmanagement ensure that these things are done the right way.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
This alignment of project, program, and portfolio management should be mirrored in the artifacts and documents created at eachlevel. For example, the documents created at the project management level (e.g., the project charter, project management plan,etc.) should support the needs and objectives of the program level, which should then support the requirements at the portfoliolevel and organizational-objective level.1-17 Organizational StructuresOrganizational StructuresThe structure of an organization will greatly affect the way in which its projects are managed. An organization’s structure isbased on several factors and tradeoffs that balance needs and resources in the most effective and efficient way possible. Anystructure that an organization uses will be unique in its arrangement, staff allocation, responsibility limitations, and authority levelof its project managers, in that it reflects those needs, balances, and tradeoffs.There are a number of different organizational structures (as shown below), each with its own set of characteristics, strengths,and weaknesses.Click on each of the headings below for more information.Organic/SimpleCharacteristicsThe work team is a collection of people who work side-by-side to complete tasks and activities.The project manager serves in a part-time role, with little or no authority over resources.There are no (or very few) staff members dedicated solely to project management administrative tasks.The project budget is typically managed and maintained by the organization’s owner/operator.Arrangement/CoordinationMultidivisionalCharacteristicsWork groups are arranged as product-line, production-process, customer-type, geographic-region, portfolio, orprogram teams.The project manager serves in a part-time role, with little or no authority over resources.The staff members work part-time to complete project management administrative tasks.The project budget is typically managed and maintained by a functional manager.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Arrangement/CoordinationFunctionalCharacteristicsWork teams are typically arranged by job function (e.g. design, manufacturing, shipping).The project manager serves in a part-time role, with little or no authority over resources.The staff members work part-time to complete project management administrative tasks.The project budget is typically managed and maintained by a functional manager.Arrangement/CoordinationWeak MatrixCharacteristicsWork teams are typically arranged by job function (e.g., design, manufacturing, shipping).The project manager serves in a part-time role, with little authority over resources.The staff members work part-time to complete project management administrative tasks.The project budget is typically managed and maintained by a functional manager.Arrangement/CoordinationCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Balanced MatrixCharacteristicsWork teams are typically arranged by job function (e.g., design, manufacturing, shipping).The project manager serves in a part-time role and may have some authority over resources.The staff members work part-time to complete project management administrative tasks.The project budget may be managed and maintained by the project manager and a functional manager working inconcert.Arrangement/CoordinationStrong MatrixCharacteristicsWork teams are typically arranged by job function (e.g., design, manufacturing, shipping) but the organization mayconsider project management to be a separate job function.The project manager typically serves in a full-time role, with significant authority over resources.The staff members work full-time as a project management team to complete administrative tasks.The project budget is managed and maintained by the project manager.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Project-orientedCharacteristicsWork teams are typically arranged as dedicated project teams.The project manager typically serves in a full-time role, with significant (or sometimes total) authority overresources.The staff members work full-time as a project management team to complete administrative tasks.The project budget is managed and maintained by the project manager.Arrangement/CoordinationVirtualCharacteristicsWork teams are arranged as a network of professionals in diverse locations.The project manager may serve in a full-time or a part-time role, and may have a low-to-moderate level ofauthority over resources.The staff members may work full-time or part-time to complete administrative tasks.The project budget may be managed and maintained by a project manager and/or functional manager (who mayalso work together).Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Arrangement/CoordinationHybridCharacteristicsBecause it is a mixture of other organizational structure types, the work team arrangement, project manager role,control over resources, staff dedication to project management activities, and budget management will be amixture of the characteristics from other types.Arrangement and coordination will also be a mix of organizational structures. Note: Some practitioners consider the project management office to be a separate organizational structure type, where theproject manager plays a full-time role with almost total control over resources and project budget, and the project managementadministrative tasks are completed by full-time dedicated staff.Authority LevelsAn organization’s structure will affect the amount of authority its project managers can wield.Parallels and DivergenceThe following graphic summarizes the similarities and differences between several types of organizational structures.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
1-18 Exercise: Organizational StructuresExercise: Organizational StructuresComplete the crossword by clicking on each section of the puzzle to open up the corresponding clue. You can also click on theCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
Across or Down tabs to access the clues.1-19 What Makes a Project Succeed?What Makes a Project Succeed?It is essential that stakeholders and project managers agree what a “successful project” will look like at its completion. They willneed to determine how “success” will be measured and what factors may impact this definition to ensure that project results andoutcomes will be viewed by all in the same manner.There are many factors that help determine whether a project will succeed. Projects need to be well-understood and well-supported by the organization that administers them. The project’s objectives or goals must be clearly stated, and teammembers must be empowered to reach these goals. Team members need to communicate and work well together, and theyneed to know what is expected of them.As a project manager, you’ll need to keep these factors in mind to help ensure that your project achieves a successful result.The table below contains some general ideas about why some projects fail while others succeed.Why do some projects succeed?Why do some projects fail?1. Executive level support and financialbacking2. A well-defined project charter3. Strong project management4. Working chemistry among team players5. Good decision-making structure6. Effective communication7. Alignment of team member goals1. Lack of alignment to organizational objectives2. Poorly-defined scope3. Unrealistic expectations4. Lack of executive support and financialbacking5. Insufficient project management6. Team member personality conflicts7. Organizational politicsSuccessful Project ManagersBecause they are so important to the management of projects, the knowledge, skills, and capabilities of the project managermay be the most important ingredients for ensuring project success. As the central axis of the project, they must demonstratekey competencies in many areas to successfully attain the goals set before them.Click on each of the headings below for more information.PowerAs a consequence of being named the manager or leader of projects, project managers wield a certain amount ofpower in their organizations, but the form this power will take will depend on various factors. Power may be categorizedor described as: Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
The appropriate use of the power accorded to project managers will engender a high-performing team capable of facingmany challenges; the inappropriate use will likely result in resentment, confusion, and chaos.IntegrationProject managers play a critical role in the integration of elements across the project and the organization.Click on each of the arrows below for more information.Copyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
By carefully coordinating integration in all four directions, project managers can greatly increase the alignment ofobjectives and the chances for success.KnowledgeProject managers should possess extensive project management knowledge and experience but need not havesubstantial technical product knowledge—they do not have to be experts in the specialized technical areas of theproject, but must be knowledgeable enough to be able to communicate and interact effectively with others whenproblems occur.Up IntegrationEnsuring the project aligns with program, portfolio, andbusiness objectivesDown IntegrationFocusing and guiding the team to meet project objectivesInternal IntegrationManaging complexities within the projectExternal IntegrationManaging complexities from outside the projectCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
CapabilitiesAccomplished project managers exhibit proficiency in:Critical thinking and problem solvingNegotiationCommunicationLeadership and decision makingResiliency and recoveryInterpersonal interactionsTheir abilities in each of these disciplines will help in areas not covered by technical skills, tools, and techniques.PersonalityCertain personality traits and characteristics serve project managers well in their course of action. The traits thatexceptional project managers possess include:CommunicationSuccessful project managers spend approximately 90% of their time engaged in some form of communication, soexpertise in this area will go a long way toward achieving project success. Typical forms of communication-relatedactivities include:Understanding stakeholders’ communication needsProviding clear, consistent, and precise updates and notificationsManaging expectationsActively listening to project participants and tailoring effective responsesLeadership StyleProject managers may choose a leadership style based on their organization’s characteristics, their team members’characteristics, their environment’s characteristics, or their own characteristics. Common leadership styles include thefollowing:Leadership StyleApproachLaissez-faireEmploying a “hands-off” approach that lets the team make their own decisionsTransactionalFocusing the team on goals, accomplishments, feedback, and managing by exceptionServant-leadershipConcentrating on the needs of others first and foremost, and removing obstacles in theirworkTransformationalGaining followers by empowering, inspiring, motivating, and encouraging them to succeedCharismaticUsing enthusiasm, vibrancy, personality, and self-confidence to enhance supportInteractionalCombining transactional, charismatic and transformational characteristics to lead teamsCopyright © 2023 MindEdge Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication prohibited.
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