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The starting point in discussing how projects should be properly managed is to first understand what a project is and just

as importantly what it is not. People have been undertaking projects since the earliest days of organized human activity. The hunting parties of our prehistoric ancestors were projects for example; they were temporary undertakings directed at the goal of obtaining meat for the community. Large complex projects have also been with us for a long time. The pyramids and the Great Wall of China, were in their day of roughly the same dimensions as the Apollo Project to send man to the moon. We use the term project frequently in our daily conversations. A husband, for example may tell his wife, My main project for this weekend is to straighten out the garage. Going hunting, building pyramids, and fixing faucets all share certain features that make them projects.

A project has distinctive attributes, which distinguish it from ongoing work or business operations. Projects are temporary in nature. They are not an everyday business process and have definitive start dates and end dates. This characteristic is important because a large part of the project effort is dedicated to ensuring that the project is completed at the appointed time. To do this, schedules are created showing when tasks should begin and end. Projects can last minutes, hours, days, weeks, months or years. Projects exist to bring about a product or service that hasnt existed before. In this sense, a project is unique. Unique means that this is new, this has never been done before. Maybe its been done in a very similar fashion before but never exactly in this way. For example, Ford Motor Company is in the business of designing and assembling cars. Each model that Ford designs and produces can be considered a project. The models differ from each other in their features and are marketed to people with various needs. An SUV serves a different purpose and clientele than a luxury model. The design and marketing of these two models are unique projects. However the actual assembly of the cars is considered an operation, i.e., a repetitive process that is followed for most makes and models.

In contrast with projects, operations are ongoing and repetitive. They involve work that is continuous without an ending date and you often repeat the same processes and produce the same results. The purpose of operations is to keep the organization functioning while the purpose of a project is to meet its goals and to conclude. Therefore, operations are ongoing while projects are unique and temporary. The project is completed when its goals and objectives are accomplished. It is these goals that drive the project and all the planning and implementation efforts are undertaken to achieve them. Sometimes projects end when its determined that the goals and objectives cannot be accomplished or when the product or service of the project is no longer needed and the project is cancelled.

A formal definition of a project There are many written definitions of a project, however, all of them contain the key elements described above. For those looking for a formal definition of a project the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) defines a project as a temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product, service or result. The temporary nature of projects indicates a definite beginning and end. The end is reached when the projects objectives have been achieved or when the project is terminated because its objectives will not or cannot be met, or when the need for the project no longer exists.

1. Approach to management of work within the constraints of time, cost, and performance requirements. 2. Body of knowledge concerned with principles, techniques, and tools used in planning, control, monitoring, and review of projects. All projects share one common characteristic the projection of ideas and activities in new endeavours. The ever present element of risk and uncertainty means that the events and risks leading to completion can never be told with absolute accuracy.

Projects

from prehistory to Victorian times (before 1900) 1900 1949 1950 1969 1970 1979 1980 1989 1990 to the present day

Amazing

structures were created However there was a disregard for welfare and safety of workers (with only a few exceptions) Formal management was confined to military, church and civil administration rather than industry. Were generally managed by creative architects and engineers themselves. E.g. Sir Christopher Wren (1632 1723), Thomas Telford (1757 1834) and Isambard Kingdom Brunel (1806 1859)

English

architect- rebuilt 51 churches after the great fire of 1666. His masterpiece was St. Pauls Cathedral

Scottish

civil engineer, architect and stonemason, noted road, bridge and canal builder

English

Engineer best known for the creation of Western Railways, a series of famous steamships and important bridges and tunnels.

Around

this time there was no separately recognised profession of Project Management Common sense determination and hard work got the work done

Rapid

industrialisation and demand of munitions in WW1 Saw emergence of Management Scientists and industrial engineers Elton Mayo, F.W. Taylor etc. Henry Ford made production line famous with Model T automobile. Henry Gantt developed famous Gantt charts

Critical

Path Networks were developed but without the existence of computers they were inflexible to change, difficult to translate into work schedule and thus impractical to use

Diagram of Critical Path Network

Emergence

of digital mainframe computers made processing and updating of critical path network faster and easier. American defence industry and Du Pont were quick to exploit CPN Computers were large and expensive. Small companies bought computing time from Bureaux, where project schedules were processed in batch mode. Labour welfare was now becoming recognised

Saw

growth in IT. More project management software now available. IT project managers emerged on the scenebut they were more concerned about developing IT projects rather than general project planning or scheduling experience. The demand for their services was very high. At the same time their were legislations put in place to protect the workers.

Although

project management software's were available but processing was carried on big expensive mainframe computers in batch mode. Graphics were still primitive, network diagrams had to be copied to in coding sheets to be punched and verified. These punched cards had to be taken to trained computer operators. The print outs produced would usually list a lot errors which needed to be identified.

The

reports in these days came as text from line printers so bar charts were crudely formed.

Project

managers less dependent on IT experts, now they had their own desktops to run project management software. Graphics were improved with small printers to produce coloured charts. However managers became more interested in the technology itself than the work it was supposed to do. Processing times was greatly reduced and schedule were up and working sooner. These could easily be updated

Most

software suppliers recognise the need to make their products compatible with microsoft windows. Project risk is taken seriously. Contingency and risk mitigation strategies is given priority Modern communication via satellites and internet made it possible to transmit drawings reports and other documents anywhere in the world

Project

management is no longer considered as two separate branches one for industrial and another for IT. A lot of good literature, training courses and university qualifications on project management are available. However despite all the advancement Eurotunnel has a debt of 6.5 billion, the new Wembley stadium finished late and at twice the cost of its original budget.

In

1993, the London Ambulance service launched its computer-aided dispatch system. It failed. People died and 1.5 million project was written off. A 1996 survey by the University of Sheffield showed that of the projects they had poled 80% had run late. The channel tunnel 31 miles long that links UK with mainland Europe- was several years late and 5 bill over budget

Toyota

estimates that only 5% of activities actually add value, 35% are necessary but do not add value, while the remaining 60% is pure waste muda in Japanese. Project managers should always aim at reducing muda. spite of failure we made many successful projects in aviation, aerospace, construction, medicine and other branches of human industry

In

Webster (1) defines a Principle as a general truth, a law on which others are founded or from which others are derived Cleland and Kerzner (2) go further in defining Principle as follows: 1. A fundamental rule or law of action based upon desirable ends or objectives. A principle is more basic than a policy or a procedure and generally governs both. 2. A fundamental truth, or what is believed to be truth at a given time, explaining relationships between two or more sets of variables, usually an independent variable and a dependent variable; may be descriptive, explaining what will happen, or prescriptive (or normative), indicating what a person should do. In the latter case, principles reflect some scale of values, such as efficiency, and therefore imply value judgments. From the above it would appear that the use of the qualifier Fundamental with principle is redundant. However, since there appears to be much indiscriminate use of the term Principle in the marketplace, we will retain its usage to imply that it applies to all examples or aspects of project management and is distinct from the use of the word practice.

1. There must be a project as defined in the PMBOK, and not just a task or an ongoing activity. 2. There must be a single leader (project manager), who is experienced and willing to take the responsibility for the work. 3. There must be an informed and supportive management that delegates appropriate authority to the project manager. 4. There must be a dedicated team of qualified people to do the work of the project. 5. The project goal must be clearly defined along with priorities of the shareholders. 6. There must be an integrated plan that outlines the action required in order to reach the goal. 7. There must be a schedule establishing the time goals of the project. 8. There must be a budget of costs and/or resources required for the project. In the original article, each principle is followed by clarifying text. To this list, Bing subsequently added a ninth principle: 9. There must be a system to accommodate changes

1. The Success Principle The goal of project management is to produce a successful product. Without achieving a successful product there is no merit in incurring the project management overhead cost. Contrary to conventional wisdom, there have been many projects that have been On time and within budget but the product has not been successful, and similarly many that have not been On time and within budget yet the product has been very successful. 2. The Commitment Principle A mutually acceptable commitment between a project sponsor and a project team must exist before a viable project exists. A project sponsor is a knowledgeable person representing the eventual owner of the product of the project and who is responsible for providing the necessary resources (money, goods, services, and general direction, as appropriate.) A project team is a knowledgeable and qualified group able and willing to undertake the work of the project. A mutually acceptable commitment is one in which there is agreement on the goals and objectives of the project in terms of the products scope, quality grade, time to completion and final cost.

3. The Tetrad-Trade off Principle The core variables of the project management process, namely: product scope, quality grade, time-to-produce and cost-tocomplete must all be mutually consistent. The core variables of scope, quality, time and cost are interrelated somewhat similar to a four-cornered frame with flexible joints. One corner can be anchored and another moved, but not without affecting the other two. 4. The Primary Communication Channel (or Unity-of-Command) Principle A single channel of communication must exist between the project sponsor and the project team leader for all decisions affecting the product of the project. This principle is necessary for the effective and efficient administration of the project commitment. The owner of the eventual product, if represented by more than one person, must nevertheless speak with one voice. Similarly, at any given time, the projects team must have a single point of responsibility, a project manager, for the work of the project. Such person must have the skills, experience, dedication, commitment, authority and tenacity to lead the project to success.

5. The Cultural Environment (or Suitability) Principle An informed management must provide a supportive cultural environment to enable the project team to produce its best work. An informed management is one which understands the project management process. A supportive cultural environment is one in which the project is clearly backed by management, and project team members are enabled to produce their best work without unnecessary bureaucratic hindrance. This principle includes the need for management to ensure that the leadership profile and management style are suited to both the type of project and its phase in the project life-cycle.

6. The Process Principle Effective and efficient policies and procedures must be in place for the conduct of the project commitment. Such policies and procedures must cover, at a minimum, clear roles and responsibilities, delegation of authority, and processes for managing the scope of work, including changes, maintenance of quality, and schedule and cost control. 7. The Life-Cycle Principle Plan first, then do. A successful project management process relies on two activities planning first, and then doing. These two sequential activities form the basis of every project lifecycle, and can be expanded to suit the control requirements of every type of project in every area of project management application. The project life-cycle, characterized by a series of milestones determines when the project starts, the control gates through which it must pass, and when the project is finished.

Project managers must focus on three dimensions of project success. Simply put, project success means completing all project deliverables on time, within budget, and to a level of quality that is acceptable to sponsors and stakeholders. The project manager must keep the teams attention focused on achieving these broad goals. Planning is everything and ongoing. On one thing all PM texts and authorities agree: The single most important activity that project managers engage in is planning detailed, systematic, team-involved plans are the only foundation for project success. And when real-world events conspire to change the plan, project managers must make a new one to reflect the changes. So planning and replanning must be a way of life for project managers.

Project managers must feel, and transmit to their team members, a sense of urgency. Because projects are finite endeavors with limited time, money, and other resources available, they must be kept moving toward completion. Since most team members have lots of other priorities, its up to the project manager to keep their attention on project deliverables and deadlines. Regular status checks, meetings, and reminders are essential. Successful projects use a time-tested, proven project life cycle. We know what works. Models such as the standard ISD model and others described in this text can help ensure that professional standards and best practices are built into our project plans. Not only do these models typically support quality, they help to minimize rework. So when time or budget pressures seem to encourage taking short cuts, its up to the project manager to identify and defend the best project life cycle for the job.

All

project deliverables and all project activities must be visualized and communicated in vivid detail. In short, the project manager and project team must early on create a tangible picture of the finished deliverables in the minds of everyone involved so that all effort is focused in the same direction. Avoid vague descriptions at all costs; spell it out, picture it, prototype it, and make sure everyone agrees to it. Deliverables must evolve gradually, in successive approximations. It simply costs too much and risks too much time spent in rework to jump in with both feet and begin building all project deliverables. Build a little at a time, obtain incremental reviews and approvals, and maintain a controlled evolution.

Projects require clear approvals and sign-off by sponsors. Clear approval points, accompanied by formal sign-off by sponsors, SMEs, and other key stakeholders, should be demarcation points in the evolution of project deliverables. Its this simple: anyone who has the power to reject or to demand revision of deliverables after they are complete must be required to examine and approve them as they are being built. Project success is correlated with thorough analyses of the need for project deliverables. Our research has shown that when a project results in deliverables that are designed to meet a thoroughly documented need, then there is a greater likelihood of project success. So managers should insist that there is a documented business need for the project before they agree to consume organizational resources in completing it.

Project managers must fight for time to do things right. In our work with project managers we often hear this complaint: We always seem to have time to do the project over; I just wish we had taken the time to do it right in the first place! Projects must have available enough time to do it right the first time. And project managers must fight for this time by demonstrating to sponsors and top managers why its necessary and how time spent will result in quality deliverables. Project manager responsibility must be matched by equivalent authority. Its not enough to be held responsible for project outcomes; project managers must ask for and obtain enough authority to execute their responsibilities. Specifically, managers must have the authority to acquire and coordinate resources, request and receive SME cooperation, and make appropriate, binding decisions which have an impact on the success of the project.

Project sponsors and stakeholders must be active participants, not passive customers. Most project sponsors and stakeholders rightfully demand the authority to approve project deliverables, either wholly or in part. Along with this authority comes the responsibility to be an active participant in the early stages of the project (helping to define deliverables), to complete reviews of interim deliverables in a timely fashion (keeping the project moving), and to help expedite the project managers access to SMEs, members of the target audience, and essential documentation. Projects typically must be sold, and resold. There are times when the project manager must function as salesperson to maintain the commitment of stakeholders and sponsors. With project plans in hand, project managers may need to periodically remind people about the business need that is being met and that their contributions are essential to help meet this need.

Project managers should acquire the best people they can and then do whatever it takes to keep the garbage out of their way. By acquiring the best people the most skilled, the most experienced, the best qualified the project manager can often compensate for too little time or money or other project constraints. Project managers should serve as an advocate for these valuable team members, helping to protect them from outside interruptions and helping them acquire the tools and working conditions necessary to apply their talents. Top management must actively set priorities. In todays leaner, selfmanaging organizations, it is not uncommon for project team members to be expected to play active roles on many project teams at the same time. Ultimately, there comes a time when resources are stretched to their limits and there are simply too many projects to be completed successfully. In response, some organizations have established a Project Office comprised of top managers from all departments to act as a clearinghouse for projects and project requests. The Project Office reviews the organizations overall mission and strategies, establishes criteria for project selection and funding, monitors resource workloads, and determines which projects are of high enough priority to be approved. In this way top management provides the leadership necessary to prevent multi-project log jams.