Project Management

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Whether it’s in-person or virtual, PMI events give you the right skills to complete amazing projects. In this blog, whether it be our Virtual Experience Series, PMI Training (formerly Seminars World) and our inaugural PMI® Global Summit 2022, experienced event presenters past, present and future from the entire PMI event family share their knowledge on a wide range of issues important to project managers.

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Cameron McGaughy
Kimberly Whitby
Laura Schofield
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Johanna Rusly
April Birchmeier
Nikki Evans
Dalibor Ninkovic
Deepa Bhide
Chris DiBella
Nic Jain
Karen Chovan
Jack Duggal
Catalin Dogaru
Priya Patra
Josh Parrott
Scott Lesnick-CSP
Antonio Nieto
Dimitrios Zaires
Ahmed Zouhair
Carmine Paragano
Te Wu
Katie Mcconochie
Fabiola Maisonnier
Erik Agudelo
Paul Capello
Kiron Bondale
Jamie Champagne
Esra Tepeli
Renaldi Gondosubroto
Mel Ross
Geetha Gopal
David Summers
Fabio Rigamonti
Archana Shetty
Geneviève Bouchard
Randall Englund
Kristy Tan Neckowicz
Moritz Sprenger
Mike Frenette
O. Chima Okereke
David Maynard
Nancie Celini
Sandra MacGillivray
Sharmila Das
Gina Abudi
Greg Githens
Sarah Mersereau
Lawrence Cooper
Donna Gregorio
Bruce Gay
Wael Ramadan
Fiona Lin
Joe Shi
Michel Thiry
Heather van Wyk
Barbara Trautlein
Steve Salisbury
Yves Cavarec
Drew Craig
Stephanie Jaeger
Diana Robertson
Benjamin C. Anyacho
Nadia Vincent
Carlos Javier Pampliega García
Norma Lynch
Emily Luijbregts
Michelle Stronach
Sydni Neptune
Quincy Wright
Nesrin Aykac
Laura Samsó
Lily Woi
Jill Almaguer
Marcos Arias
Karthik Ramamurthy
Yoram Solomon
Cheryl Lee
Kelly George
Dan Furlong
Kristin Jones
Jeannette Cabanis-Brewin
Carlene Szostak
Hilary Kinney
Annmarie Curley
David Davis

Recent Posts

Presentation Recap: Ask Me Anything: Perspectives from PMI Board of Directors

Presentation Recap: Session 310: Leading an Inclusive Project Team

Presentation Recap: Session 308: Operation Readiness: A Systematic Approach for Industrial Construction Projects

Presentation Recap: Session 315: Best Practices in the Art of Survival with Strategic Planning

Presentation Recap: Session 313: Project Takeover: Transition toward Success

Viewing Posts by Donna Gregorio

Presentation Recap: The 3 Most Challenging Moments That Can Make or Break Any Project

By Donna D. Gregorio

During my presentation on “The 3 Most Challenging Moments That Can Make or Break Any Projectat the PMI Virtual Experience Series 2021 on 6-7 October, the audience posed several questions in the chat that are worthy of a blog post response.  Here are a few of those questions and my answers, based on what was discussed in my presentation.

Question 1: Do you think the key to PM irreplaceable vs. irrelevant is the level of influence and trust built with the stakeholders?

 

The key to a PM being irreplaceable is to ensure you are actively driving the project’s success and ensuring a positive mission outcome. The world of IT project management can indeed be shaky ground if the project managers are not critical to project delivery. You need to have confidence in your role, knowing the key processes and how you are adding value. Be a critical team player by getting deep enough into the project to understand the outcomes such that you can quantify them using metrics for program success measures. There are other ways to be a critical team member, including managing cross-coordination issues across multiple efforts, identifying and driving data integration issues, and communicating cross-functional impacts with stakeholders. Be less administrative and more attentive to project goals and deliverables to make yourself irreplaceable.

 

Question 2: Very nice presentation, Donna. You’ve touched on scope creep. How have you managed to balance avoiding scope creep with the requirements of incremental/iterative projects?

 

Scope creep can be the biggest threat to your project regarding lengthening the schedule, increasing cost, and lowering your chances of success. It happens when features are added that were not in the original plan and unaccounted for in cost and schedule. When an incremental/iterative project begins to learn more and adds new features, negotiation with stakeholders is key to ensure comparable original requirements are removed. In other words, only add new features if you can remove some items to keep your work balanced. Capacity planning and understanding how much work your team can accomplish is another significant factor to ensuring proper estimating. Remember that negotiating is key to staying within budget/schedule as the scope is shifting.

 

Question 3: Do you have any advice, if you were not responsible for project initiation and experience massive problems now with the project? A risk management is already implemented, but all communication with stakeholders is very difficult.

 

One approach would be to develop a “get well” plan for your troubled project and take action to set things right. Start out by ensuring you have As Is documentation to review the schedule, work breakdown structure, recent status reports and user acceptance testing results. Identify what was the expected plan and where are you now. Provide recommendations, including adjusting any diagramming, changing workflows, modifying execution plans or Kanban boards, conduct a change-readiness review. The team can decide whether there is time in the schedule to proceed with these recommendations. Finally, the task force can develop an organizational change management plan, collect metrics for proof of success, conduct lessons learned, and finalize any wrap-up tasks, such as budget finalization.

 

This and other presentations are available on demand through 31 January 2022. Visit PMI Virtual Experience Series 2021 for more details. 

Posted by Donna Gregorio on: October 15, 2021 02:09 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)

Upcoming Presentation: The Three Most Challenging Moments That Can Make or Break Any Project

By Donna D. Gregorio, PMP
Department Head, The MITRE Corporation

According to a recent Forbes study, four out of 10 tech leaders are failing due to the lack of effort that the industry puts into developing its leaders.  As a seasoned tech leader, I’m here to help you become an expert in IT project management, with practical guidance from my own hard-earned lessons learned.  I believe most technical project managers do not have the right skills, leaving them open to failures and cancellations. I realized I wanted to teach others how to be better project managers, so I signed up to teach graduate school classes. My students’ interest piqued when I told stories of my professional experiences. Now, I have used these techniques to formulate the path to project success.

Telling stories of project challenges helps to illustrate the three most challenging moments in every project.  Imagine a project that did not ascertain an adequate budget prior to recommending an expensive solution that stakeholders inevitably rejected. Envision the project that used a half-dozen project managers to collect status reports and were subsequently fired when the team’s value came into question. Picture the project nearing completion but still had a huge to-do list that did not have a clearly defined outcome, so the team was shocked when stakeholders ended the project when they least expected. These real-life scenarios will resonate with the audience as we discuss avoidance techniques and skills to round out your toolkit.
 

If you’re interested in hearing these and other stories of conquering project challenges, join me on 6 October at the PMI Virtual Experience Series, where we explore the skills and techniques to make you an irreplaceable - not irrelevant - project manager in Session 404: The Three Most Challenging Moments That Can Make or Break Any Project.

Posted by Donna Gregorio on: September 10, 2021 10:59 AM | Permalink | Comments (1)
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