Project Pain Reliever by Dave Garrett

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Although a valuable reference for all project managers, this handbook was developed primarily for new and accidental project managers who manage projects as part of their role and not their profession. These project managers often lack the training or experience to effectively address many of the problems faced by seasoned project management professionals. Project Pain Reliever is uniquely organized in essentially a plug-and-play format designed to help these project managers quickly find specific solutions to the problems that they are desperate to fix right now!

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Dave Garrett, Editor
Table of Contents:
PART A: LEADERSHIP--THE ART OF PROJECT MANAGEMENT

Chapter1: Focusing Your Efforts
1.1: Whom do I have to please? 
1.2: How do I define "success" on this project?
1.3: Different people want different things at different times.
1.4: I'm technically on track, but not accomplishing what people wanted. 
1.5: I feel like I need to start over.
1.6: I feel all alone. Where can I turn for advice?
1.7: Management just changed the goals. How do I reset the direction?
1.8: I'm having trouble making decisions. 
1.9: Sponsors won't decide what they want.
1.10: What my sponsor wants doesn't make sense. 
1.11: What makes my project important? 

Chapter 2: Motivating People
2.1: I feel like I'm the only one who cares. 
2.2: Team members aren't excited about their work.
2.3: Team members question whether the project is worth doing. 
2.4: People feel like they don't get credit for the work they do.
2.5: My team doesn't believe in their ability to execute. 
2.6: My team doesn't believe in the plan or schedule.
2.7: My team doesn't believe in me as a manager.

Chapter 3: Effectively Communicating
3.1: How do I gain my team's trust?
3.2: I don't understand what my stakeholders want.
3.3: My team members misunderstand or will not follow my directions.
3.4: What should my relationships with my team look like?
3.5: What should my relationship with my sponsor look like?
3.6: People say they don't know what is going on.
3.7: I can't get people to see my point of view. 
3.8: Someone on my team has an answer, but I can't get it out of them.
3.9: How do I deliver bad news? 
3.10: I can't get management to resolve an issue or dispute. 
3.11: My boss won't listen to me. 
3.12: I can't get the team to talk to each other effectively. 

Chapter 4: Navigating People Challenges
4.1: The office politics are killing me. 
4.2: My sponsor doesn't trust me or give me the authority I need.
4.3: My team members pad their estimates.
4.4: Some team members lack the skills they need. 
4.5: Other projects keep stealing my resources. 
4.6: My team isn't really a team. 
4.7: My team spends more time arguing than working. 
4.8: There is too much finger pointing.
4.9: People around me have hidden agendas.
4.10: I do too much work to manage anything. 

PART B: MANAGEMENT--THE SCIENCE OF PROJECT MANAGEMENT

Chapter 5: Dealing With Constraints, Assumptions, and Scope
5.1: We took on too much.
5.2: Everything has changed. I need to reset goals and expectations.
5.3: We don't have the resources we need.
5.4: We're fine, but over budget. 
5.5: We're fine, but short on time.
5.6: We can get everything done on time and under budget, but not very well. 
5.7: My project's end point is a moving target.
5.8: Part of my project has no end to it. 
5.9: The requirements keep changing. 

Chapter 6: Building and Delivering on Requirements
6.1: My sponsor told me what to do, but there's not enough detail.
6.2: We ended up with the wrong design.
6.3: We have the wrong technology for the job. 
6.4: The design meets the requirements, but does not satisfy the project's goal.
6.5: Beyond being done, how do I measure quality?
6.6: The team is frustrated with rework based on changing requirements.
6.7: Our specifications are unclear.
6.8: We spend too much time on documentation.
6.9: Sponsors complain that documentation and training are insufficient.

Chapter 7: Planning
7.1: I don't understand why we need to plan so much.
7.2: How do I break down a project into smaller parts?
7.3: Everything is "top priority."
7.4: Someone must have done this before. Where do I find more info? 
7.5: I have no idea how to estimate how long this will take.
7.6: The project management software is not helping me.
7.7: My schedule is totally unrealistic. 
7.8: It's hard for me to tell what is important (the critical path).
7.9: I made some wrong assumptions. 
7.10: The company's project management process doesn't work for me. 
7.11: Everything is urgent, and I'm behind.
7.12: Oops, I forgot a chunk of work that needs to be done.
7.13: We have no Plan B. 
7.14: Whenever I propose a project schedule, I am asked to compress it.

Chapter 8: Managing People Day to Day
8.1: Meetings are a waste of time.
8.2: Vendors are not delivering. 
8.3: People ignore my emails. 
8.4: I may not have the right team. 
8.5: I am not sure how much process is enough. 
8.6: I do not know enough technical stuff to manage.
8.7: There are too many issues to handle in a timely fashion.
8.8: How much status is enough?
8.9: I don't know how to test to ensure things will work.
8.10: I can't work well with people at a distance.
8.11: I don't know how to balance my project and team needs!

Chapter 9: Managing Risks
9.1: I didn't realize what could happen if this project fails.
9.2: Problems keep popping up that I did not expect.
9.3: The importance of my project changed.
9.4: My project is too dependent on a few key people.
9.5: Some of this project is beyond my control.
9.6: Costs are much higher than we thought.
9.7: I don't know if a real risk is an "issue."
9.8: How do I know what might be a problem in the future?
9.9: Should we end this project early?
9.10: There's been a crisis, beyond the scope of my project!

Index

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I watched the Indy 500, and I was thinking that if they left earlier they wouldn't have to go so fast.

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