Project Management

Rule #1 of Project Management: Have Fun?

Andy Jordan is President of Roffensian Consulting S.A., a Roatan, Honduras-based management consulting firm with a comprehensive project management practice. Andy always appreciates feedback and discussion on the issues raised in his articles and can be reached at [email protected] Andy's new book Risk Management for Project Driven Organizations is now available.

It’s been a long time since I was in school, but I’m pretty certain that the term “project management” was never heard throughout my entire school career. It just wasn’t even close to the kind of thing that we would have been taught—and when I began managing projects in my career, I never felt as though it was the kind of thing that should have been taught in school.

Things are different now, and have been for some time. The PMI conference paper Empowering kids through project skills is 15 years old now, but it is still tremendously valuable for those looking to help kids get into project management basics. And there are many other examples of approaches and techniques to help introduce children to the basic concepts of project management.

Recently, a colleague of mine was invited to visit his children’s school to talk about project management and to run some simple exercises. He’s a very thorough individual, and he would have researched all the tips and approaches online to try and figure out how best to go about things.

The problem he ran into was that the group he was talking to were rather younger than the children that most of those approaches consider—mostly 8- and 9-year-olds. He knew that the secret was to keep it simple, so he focused solely on developing a basic plan—the project was to build a house …

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"Why is it that people rejoice at a birth and grieve at a funeral? It is because we are not the people involved."

- Mark Twain