The work breakdown structure is fundamental to project execution. When we expend insufficient time and develop inadequate detail on the WBS, the project will yield poor results and we can expect to see last-minute identification of critical elements. Here we look in greater detail at this essential tool.
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Like project managers, weather forecasters predict, or forecast, what will happen in the future. But they have an advantage over most PMs when it comes to estimating future uncertainties. Weather forecasters forecast the future more than they predict the future, and forecasts are superior to predictions for aligning stakeholder expectations and improving stakeholder decision making.
One of the most complex issues in project management to handle is when a team struggles at getting to “done” at key milestones. This article presents the problem along with suggestions on how to combat it.
Iterations are too long. Stories are humongous. Everyone is multitasking. The product owner is not available enough. This is a rich, problem-solving environment--the project has a ton of problems. You know you can help the team fix these issues, but you just have one problem: Where do you start?
When PMI-style project management techniques don’t align with the culture and abilities of an organization, PMs are left frustrated and their colleagues skeptical of perceived PM mumbo jumbo. Both sides emerge with a reluctance to collaborate and a dramatically lessened taste for implementing project management techniques in their workplace.
Recently, concerns have surfaced regarding the viability of the remaining three months of your project. Management wants quantitative evidence that it will finish successfully and on time. You need to act and act now. Before hitting the panic button, rely on these proven techniques to help achieve success.
There’s plenty of pressure to try to finish projects faster. Sometimes that pressure comes from outside the team, from our managers. When it does, the team can succumb to two common agile schedule games: “Double Your Velocity” and “Everyone Start Your Own Story.” If you face these games, you do have options before they destroy your project.
Earned value analysis is the key to assessing your project health and applying metrics to manage your project. So why do only a few project manager's understand EVA and actually apply it to their projects? This is the first in a six-part series on EVA, providing an introduction into EVA in an easy-to-understand format.
Project managers live and die by the performance of projects against their schedule, yet many of them don’t know how to measure that performance. To truly understand what’s going on with their projects, it’s important for new PMs to avoid falling into the “percent complete” trap in the first place.
Why would you not always do as much planning as possible before starting a project? Could it actually be harmful? It all depends on the quality of that input data--when the input data is good, we can reliably plan; when the input data is bad, then we need to get better data and keep evolving the plans.