PM Network

PM Network is the award-winning professional magazine published monthly for members of the Project Management Institute. This blog will highlight some of the publication's valuable information and insights, keeping you up to date on industry trends.

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High-Risk Endeavor Wins PMI Project of the Year

Some projects just scream out “RISK”, in capital letters and blinking neon. Such was the case with the AY-102 Recovery Project. This was an effort to prevent radioactive waste in a leaking tank from escaping and contaminating the nearby Columbia River, the source of drinking water for many residents of Washington and Oregon, USA.

The team succeeded in meeting its goals and it did so 17 days ahead of schedule and US$8.7 million under budget. These were some of the factors behind the selection of AY-102 Recovery Project as the 2017 PMI Project of the Year. Learn all about this amazing project in November PM Network.

Our coverage of the winner includes details on how the team handled the many risks. A Monte Carlo analysis predicted a 12 percent chance of success. Schedule planning was extremely important—two full-time schedulers ultimately oversaw 9,000 activities. Critical-path analysis was the team’s most important scheduling tool.

After the project ended, the team shared lessons learned with other nuclear storage sites. They continue to look at why the tank leaked.

As always with PM Network case studies, we add a personal touch with a mini-profile of a project manager and his or her career and career lessons learned.

Watch for future issues of PM Network for detailed case studies of PMI Project of the Year finalists, as well as the PMO of the Year winner and finalists.

Posted on: November 07, 2017 11:23 AM | Permalink | Comments (7)

The Last Stop on the PM Network Tour

The final stop on this month’s tour of your profession’s magazine is the “feature well,” to use publishing terminology. It is here that you can read the long-form articles that PM Network is most known for—and also enjoy some of our award-winning graphic treatments.

Generally, PM Network’s feature well will contain one or two case studies, going into detail of how challenging projects succeeded beyond expectations. At this time of year, PM Network starts running extensive profiles our Project of the Year and PMO of the Year finalists. Watch for that beginning in November.

Features also usually include an article focusing on the people skills so essential to the profession. Whether it is handling conflict, knowing what to do when there is turnover on your team, or the elements of smart decision making, we have you covered.

Trends in project management get plenty of detailed ink here as well. For example, as agile approaches (and agile organizations) continue to take off, you will see more and more on that subject.

Periodically, the magazine will spotlight one country and detail the project environment in that place. Singapore is covered this month.

In October PM Network, you can also read feature articles on telecommunications transforming in reaction to huge increases in data consumption; how to handle disagreements; and quick summaries of all the PMO of the Year finalists (longer case studies will begin in December). And there is a case study on a 14-year project to build a Baha’i temple in an earthquake-prone location in Chile.

It’s time to start looking forward to our most popular feature of the year, in terms of online visits: The 2018 Jobs Report. If your new year’s resolution is to find a new job, mark early January on your calendar. That’s the month the report will come out in PM Network.

Thanks for coming on our tour! We hope to see you again soon.

Posted on: October 23, 2017 11:06 AM | Permalink | Comments (10)

Front to Back PM Network, Part II

First, I’d like to thank those who commented on my previous post for their good words about the magazine. We try to make PM Network an excellent read with information you could use in your jobs and perhaps even in your lives. After all, project management is in everything we do.

We started our tour of the magazine with the Edge section. Moving right along, let’s check out the Voices section. Voices is where experts share their advice and practitioners tell of their experience on a variety of subjects.

Each month, Voices begins with “Project Toolkit,” a roundup of practitioner takes on a common question. In October, we ask “How do you ensure attendance and full engagement at project meetings?”

Next up is “Inside Track.” This is an interview with a project executive such as a PMO director, often explaining the executive’s organization’s path to organizing and empowering a PMO, and the value a PMO brings. This month, Sonja Prinsloo of the real-estate development company Arcadis discusses her leadership in rolling out standardized project management processes and governance, helping clients deliver their portfolio plans.

Next comes a variety of columnists, including the very popular “Career Q&A.” Six times a year, Lindsay Scott, a recruitment director at Arras People, London, answers readers’ questions on getting ahead in the world of project, program and portfolio management. Other popular columnists include Jesse Fewell (writing about agile), Priya Patra (IT) and Abid Mustafa (PMOs).

Finally, Voices features your voice. The columns labeled “Getting It Done” are written by practitioners eager to share the “how-tos” that might help your job as well. The current PM Network features “Getting It Done” articles by an associate director of the U.S. Census Bureau on the massive every-10-year count of the U.S. population, and by a team of project leaders from Thales Alenia Space, Rome, on using Monte Carlo analysis to go beyond risk management.

I’ll complete the tour in the next post. Before we move on, are there any questions/comments?

Posted on: October 12, 2017 10:39 AM | Permalink | Comments (7)

Reading PM Network Front to Back

I’m a little biased, but I think PM Network is a great read from the Table of Contents on page 1 all the way to the “Closing Thoughts” interview on page 72. The feature articles, including this month’s story on telecoms transforming to keep up with skyrocketing data consumption, are great. But in this post, I’m going to focus on the Edge section.

Edge provides quick reads on some of the most interesting projects coming in the near future, as well as important trends you need to know about. The October PM Network Edge section starts with a rendering and description of Beijing’s forthcoming civic center. It’s not many cities that put a sledding hill on top of their new buildings.

From there, Edge goes to the brain, and projects to link thoughts with digital devices. Previously, brain-computer interface projects focused on ways to restore sight, hearing and mobility. New projects will deal with self-driving vehicles and security applications such as passwords. But will computers be able to read your mind?

Edge goes around the world to point out projects in the booming medical tourism space. It then zeroes in on Nigeria, where financial technology (fintech) projects are expected to ramp up. And it reports on growth in the freight railroad sector and innovation in designing and producing clothing for disabled people.

What insights did you get from this month’s Edge? Please share in the comments.

Posted on: October 02, 2017 11:16 AM | Permalink | Comments (8)

Is Your Organization Keeping Up With the Competition?

Categories: agile

Start-ups are upsetting the proverbial apple cart and upstaging old-timer organizations by being able to respond more quickly to market trends. What do you do?

This month’s PM Network has some ideas. Many organizations are implementing agile approaches. A survey shows that a top benefit of adopting agile is an increased ability to manage changing priorities. Increased project delivery speed is another advantage of going the agile way.

The article “Built for Speed” follows Australian telecommunications company Telstra as its IT and digital solutions team rolls out frequent releases for its products and supporting software. Another example shown in the article is the data engine Zoomdata, which sped up its product deliveries by transitioning to agile and giving ownership to its product teams.

Agile approaches can be used outside of IT as well. The article offers a five-step process of introducing agile. The results can be transformative for customers interacting with your organization.

Posted on: September 15, 2017 11:15 AM | Permalink | Comments (6)

"Great souls have wills; feeble ones have only wishes."

- Chinese Proverb