Knowledge Shelf

The mission of Knowledge Shelf is to help project professionals and organizations advance our practice by sharing their experiences and viewpoints. It is comprised of a wide range of practitioners from a wide range of fields, covering both popular and niche topics. From lessons learned and case studies to opinion pieces and articles, the information presented may be either specialized or general, but will be current and vital. This platform gives a voice to peers new to our online community, and allows for longer form contributions on ProjectManagement.com. For more information on contributing to Knowledge Shelf, including licensing information, please see our Editorial Guidelines.

Feed the Energy

by Melissa Gottschalk, PMI-ACP, PMP

Positive energy, an important predictor of organizational success, is often overlooked or poorly represented. Evidence has shown that positive-charged project leaders create high performance within the organization. Enact these suggestions to promote positive energy in your projects.

Project Constraints on a Journey Toward Being Agile

by Pawan Rai

Every project manager is familiar with the project management triangle, comprised of scope, time and cost. Quality, resources and risk are additional factors that must be accounted for to achieve project success. The focus here is to understand how these constraints are still relevant in the age of agile.

Distributed Authority in Project Management

by Dr. Jerry Mulenburg, PMP

Successful management in organizations is the result of a willingness by senior managers to distribute authority to those who are responsible for “getting the job done.” Learn how results can be improved when authority, responsibility and accountability work together on a project.

Honesty as the Basis of Ethics in an Organization: Why Ethics Are That Important

by Angelica Larios, PMP

At the bottom line of ethics, there is honesty, which should be part of every transaction, interaction, decision or action that an organization and its employees take. Six steps are proposed to help improve relationships between organizations and their employees, orienting the application of ethics through steps of honesty.

Transforming Life Insurance: A 7-Stage Journey Just to Get Started

by Philipp Masefield, MA, HSG, PMP

Intending to transform the established life insurance business of a leading insurer is a multi-dimensional challenge. It is also a story of the level of adaptability, perseverance and collaboration. In this case study of a leading Swiss insurance Company, the author shares the insights gained from the four-year journey as the company prepares for implementation.

El Rol de la Comunicación en Proyectos y Pequeñas Empresas

by Angelica Larios, PMP

La comunicación interna genera ideas, y las ideas pueden convertirse en procesos, productos o servicios innovadores, o llevar a la adopción de nuevas tecnologías y conocimientos. La comunicación abierta juega un papel central en negocios creativos e innovadores. Aprenda cómo mejorar la comunicación puede mejorar los resultados y beneficiar a su negocio.

The Role of Communication in Projects and Small Organizations

by Angelica Larios, PMP

Internal communication generates ideas—and ideas can become innovative processes, products or services, or lead to the adoption of new technologies and knowledge. Open communication plays a central role in creative and innovative businesses. Learn how improving communication can enhance results and benefit your business.

Scope Creep in Projects: Looking From the Lens of Critical Thinking

by Vanita Bhoola

It is a VUCA world—volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous—and project management is no exception. In such situations, the final project may hardly resemble the original or initial plan. Welcome to scope creep! How can critical thinking help?

Governance Around Projects: An Organizational Approach

by Lourdes Medina, PMP, PfMP, ITIL, CSM

An efficient frame of governance helps to ensure the strategic alignment of the organization with corporate initiatives and their realization. This article analyzes governance around projects with an organizational approach at the strategic level, at the tactical and portfolio level, and at the program and project level.

Project Managing the Start-Up: What Entrepreneurs Can Learn From Project Managers

by Dr. Riaan Steenberg, MBA, PMP

There is a strong correlation between the success of a start-up and the extent to which the entrepreneur executes on the disciplines of finding customers, enabling operations and managing resources. How can entrepreneurs gain insight into the link between the methods needed to manage projects and the processes of establishing a business?

How to Get Executives to Act for Project Success

by Michael O'Brochta, PMI-ACP, PMP

The trap of applying best-practice project management only to have the project fail because of executive inaction or counteraction can be avoided. This how-to paper describes how project managers can get their executives to act, and it identifies executive actions most likely to contribute to project success.

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Effective Facility Closure: A Risk Management Perspective

by Amin Terouhid, PhD, PMP

Project management techniques can ensure that a facility closure is completed effectively, with economically, environmentally and socially responsible outcomes. Applying risk management processes assures the right set of strategies are incorporated into the project execution to respond to possible risks.

How to Connect With Organizational Culture and Enhance Meaningfulness

by M. Aslam Mirza, CEngr, MBA, PMP

Connecting with organizational culture to enhance productivity is paramount in project management; it helps to not only improve performance, but also adds meaningfulness. How can organizations align their values with talent management to inspire team members and create a high-performing culture?

From Banking to Building Site: Are Project Management Skills Transferable?

by Melanie Eichhorn-Schurig, Prince2, LL.M., Diplom-Kauffrau (FH), PMP

While applying her experience in the banking industry to a home expansion project, the author learned some key lessons: Project management skills are transferable between sectors and project managers should not be afraid to take on projects in areas where they have little or no industry knowledge.

Project Scope: Managing Complexity and Uncertainty

by D. Mari Rengarajam

Projects with many influential stakeholders face difficulty in arriving at an agreed-upon scope. And even after this agreement, complex project requirements may fluctuate from relatively stable to uncertain. The author shares insights into effective scope management and the role of governance boards.

Challenges When Integrating Nearshore With Offshore Outsourcing

by Human Motamedi

Establishing collaboration between a nearshore development subsidiary and an offshore outsourcing supplier can present challenges even when the client has an established delivery model for outsourcing projects. With nearshore-offshore collaboration on the rise, a better understanding of the challenges involved is beneficial.

Ethics, Culture and Project Management in 21st-Century Organizations

by Jose A. LugoSantiago, ASQ CMQ/OE, LSSMBB, PMP

A common, shared ethic can close the generational gap and aid in team integration, but the complex business environment necessitates an approach to ethics founded on culture. The catalyst for that culture must be embedded in leadership’s participation in behavior that reflects the shared values of the project management profession.

Winning the Deal

by Soumya Maitra

Vendor management is a key activity in any project but literature often overlooks the vendor’s point of view. While there can’t be a “one-solution-fits-all” strategy to the challenging activities involved in making your pitch, the author, working with an IT service provider, shares his recipe for winning the client.

Overcoming Cultural Barriers to Learning in Projects

by Alex Booth

What is it that makes learning from projects so elusive? This article posits that culture has a significant influence. Presented here are the most common challenges to learning identified in industry and academia—reframed as cultural issues—alongside practical recommendations for overcoming them.

Project Management as a Skill and Its Resiliency to Technological Change

by David Campodonico

Like many industries, the field of project management has embraced technology, seeking to improve efficiency and outcomes. But while technology may improve or complement the skill set of project managers, it will never be a substitute for their roles.

Containing Volatility of Scope

by Suresh Randadath, PMP, TOGAF9

Not managing scope can seriously jeopardize a project, as the scope is the bedrock on which the product or solution is built. Understanding the various reasons for scope expansion in terms of customer- and vendor-induced expansions and how to define a good requirement are important building blocks.

Ties That Bind Virtual Teams

by Priya Sanjeevi Raja, PMP

Companies are utilizing virtual teams to bring together ideas, talents, resources and opportunities. Explore various virtual team management strategies as implemented by the author within a team of women e-learning professionals. Project managers will be able to identify tried and tested methods for managing virtual teams.

Scrum Framework Team Roles and How Project Management Activities Are Distributed

by Karen Z. Sullivan, PMP, PSM 1

Within the scrum framework, the responsibilities and accountabilities of the scrum team as a whole align to the project management activities defined within the PMBOK® Guide. Understanding how these roles align helps to determine how a traditional project manager can transition into a scrum team on an agile project using the scrum framework.

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