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February 26, 2010 [ More archived home pages here ]

Improvisational Project Management?


The above image, Indecision is also available as a Desktop Background

Today's song is Five O'clock World by The Vogues, released in 1966.

As the current economic recession continues unabated I hear and also read about the failures of so many corporate projects. Most of the time the ones I hear about first-hand occur because of the lack of using proper project management techniques. It seems to me that companies deliberately wish to impede the success of their projects by ignoring project management principles, foolishly improvising on their own. Maybe they take comfort in the fact that other companies are failing also? If so, they will be eating their own dog food for a long time.

I know that some startups or competitors are implementing project management in their projects, working on how to eliminate the dog food eating companies from the marketplace. Those are the companies I tend to focus on working with because the remainder are going to fade away at some point. It's how the free marketplace works and how customers respond favorably to those that service them properly.

Perhaps the dog food eaters think proper project management is a waste of time? They must have after-all some reason or excuse to reject a sound approach to fulfilling projects. I only need to think back on my own corporate experiences to recollect the reasons I heard back then. Amazingly I still discover many of those same reasons today in the conversations of failed projects. Maybe I should start carrying around a few cans of Alpo for those occasions?

No, I have no reason to keep those kennels going. I'm on the other side of the issue. I have been for many years now.

As a PMI CAPM and member of PMI-SD, I know the true value of project management. I'm currently involved as a volunteer Liaison on the PMI-SD 2009 Project of the Year. I am on a team of dedicated volunteer project managers helping participating companies showcase their projects, competing against their peers to see who accomplished what they set out to do last year. Each year PMI and their local chapters help determine those companies using proper project management furthering the business needs of their organizations. It's more worthwhile to work with projects that had positive outcomes than listen to why projects failed because the available knowledge was ignored.

Let me illustrate just one the many steps involving proper project management. The image below is one of the steps from the Project Management Book of Knowledge (PMBOK).

As you can see there are many connections involved in developing an effective Project Management Plan. If any of these connections are dismissed out-of-hand without consideration, the chance of your project failing increases. Many companies that eat dog food openly dismiss many of these steps, leading them down the path of failure instead of possible success.

Obviously, there are many more established steps to a successful project than just that one shown above. The illustration is understood by PMI certified professionals as well as the other parts of the PMBOK. We know how to help deliver successful projects. That's why certified project managers are in contestant demand. Even in a slow economy as we face now, project managers are engaged either as employees or as volunteers exercising their knowledge and skills, proving themselves and their profession.

PMI-SD willingly shares the information we have. For those interested in a change of diet, we offer a variety of great events throughout the year in addition to our monthly meetings. The PMI San Diego Seventh Annual Conference provides an excellent opportunity to experience the best in project management knowledge we offer. Hundreds attend each year and come away with new insights, networking contacts, industry news from powerful presenters, technical tips, all from that supportive infrastructure. Enroll early for discounts!

Last night at my PMI-SD dinner meeting the theme was, The Magic of Volunteers. It was a wonderful meeting where all the organization's 170+ volunteers were recognized on an individual basis. I received a certificate shown below with my name included in the booklet of PMI-SD volunteers for 2009. We are a powerful group growing in many ways. My LinkedIn network contains many of my PMI-SD friends.

All of us in PMI-SD grow and learn by volunteering for this and other organizations. We network together and have a great time doing all this work.

By the way, I ate salmon for dinner, no dog food is served at PMI-SD functions. ;-)

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Today marks fourteen years of living in San Diego. Sherry and I enjoy our lives here every day.

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My partner in Newbound, Inc., Marc, posted this YouTube video showing how easy it is to create a Facebook application using our Newbound Content Management System (CSM).

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My friend, Bob, sent me this cool invention link, Bloom Energy Unveils Its Ultra-Secretive Bloom Box Fuel Cell.

Bob also sent me this very interesting link about nation account balances. Notice where the United States ranks.

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It's sad to me that this situation remains as we enter the second decade of the 21st century in these United Sates:

"In the 21st century, a digital divide is an opportunity divide" -- FCC chairman Julius Genachowski

Here's one person's story.

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Need to track a budget in Microsoft Project 2007?

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Found on the web links for February 25, 2010 [ Link since removed ]

Don


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