Project Management

Establish a Community of Practice in 7 Easy Steps

Dr. Andrew Makar is an IT program manager and is the author of the Microsoft Project Made Easy series. For more project management advice, visit the website

Establishing a project management community of practice requires a modest amount of effort, but if you follow these steps, you’ll have your first community of practice meeting within a few weeks. The steps are neither complex nor time-consuming, but they do require some planning to ensure a successful community of practice launch.

Step 1: Write a mini-charter
As project managers, it shouldn’t surprise you that the first step in any initiative is to draft a brief charter describing the goals, objectives and scope of the community of practice. Developing the charter is an important step since it establishes the key goals and objectives about project management community of practice and describes the groups overall intent. It is a useful document that can be shared with other business units, departments or interested participants.
The charter doesn’t need to be a massive ream of information. Usually a one- or two-page charter document is sufficient to describe the purpose, benefits, goals and objectives. The estimated duration for this activity is one to two hours. If you’re brainstorming the scope with a few team members, it may take you a little longer to synthesize ideas and reach consensus.
Step 2: Create a presentation about the COP
The next step is to draft a presentation deck using your favorite presentation. You don’t …

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