A Method to Madness

Francine Meidhof

Madness and chaos are the basic ingredients in most projects. How those are handled is what separates the good project managers from the great ones. For some, it's a matter of nature deal with problems as they come along, follow your gut and hope for the best. For others, it's about nurturing a solution with the diligent use of methods and mountains of documentation. The question of nature vs. nurture is ages old, but when it comes to project management, the answer is relatively clear. At least that's what one PM has found through years of fighting the madness.

Amol has been an IT project manager since the early '90s. He started out as a programmer and worked his way through the '80s as a technical lead. He's handled several projects that have proved successful through the use of methodologies.

IF AT FIRST YOU DON'T SUCCEED. . .

On one of his first projects, Amol was responsible for reworking an outdated punch-card system, moving complex data into a more powerful and flexible management system. The pressure was on because the client desperately needed the processed information for a very close deadline and, more to the point, management bonuses were dependent on making that deadline.

You can't very well fulfill the project requirements if you don't know what they are. Getting that definition proved to be…


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"If you can't convince them, confuse them."

- Harry S. Truman

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