Features and Benefits
Fun, easy-to-read, and practical: the perfect tutorial and reference for every first-time project manager!
# Teaches crucial concepts and techniques new project managers can utilize with any project, in any environment, using any tool
# The closest thing to having one's own personal project management mentor and coach!
# Includes an all-new section on accelerating the learning curve: techniques, tools, scenarios, and hot topics for becoming an effective project manager even faster
Table of Contents
About This Book
Who Should Read This Book?
How This Book Is Organized
Conventions Used in This Book
PROJECT MANAGEMENT JUMPSTART
Project Management Overview
What Is Project Management...Exactly?
What Is the Value of Project Management?
Why Are Projects Challenging?
Growing Demand for Effective Project Managers?
Trends in Project Management
The Project Manager
One Title, Many Roles
Key Skills of Project Managers
Qualities of Successful Project Managers
15 Common Mistakes of Project Managers
Essential Elements for Any Successful Project
What Exactly Is a "Successful" Project?
Learning from Troubled Projects
Learning from Successful Projects
Essential Project Manager Toolkit
Defining a Project
Setting the Stage for Success
How Does Defining a Project Relate to Project Planning?
Project Definition Document
Project Definition Checklist
Planning a Project
Key Project Planning Principles
Important Questions Project Planning Should Answer
Building a Project Plan
Summary of Supplemental Project Plan Components
Project Plan Checklist
Developing the Work Breakdown Structure
What Is a WBS Exactly?
Why Is the WBS Important?
The Process of Building a WBS
Estimating the Work
Next Step in the Schedule Development Process
Managing the Risk, Managing the Estimates
Reasons for Estimating Woes
Powerful Estimating Techniques and Methods
Developing the Project Schedule
The Impact of the Project Schedule
The Goal of the Schedule Development Process
Key Inputs for Building a Schedule
Creating a Schedule
Determining the Project Budget
The Impact of the Project Budget
Principles of an Effective Budget
Creating a Project Budget
Common Budget Challenges
Controlling a Project
What Is Project Control?
Management Fundamentals for Project Control
Powerful Techniques for Project Control
Leveraging Earned Value Management Concepts
Common Project Control Challenges
Lessons from Project Recoveries
Managing Project Changes
What Exactly Is a Project Change and What's the
Big Deal Anyway?
Fundamentals for Managing Project Change
What Causes Unplanned Scope Changes?
Essential Elements of a Project Change Control System
Powerful Techniques for Minimizing Project Changes
Common Project Change Control Challenges
Managing Project Deliverables
"Managing Project Deliverables" Means What Exactly?
Why Do This? It's Too Much Work
Identify, Protect, and Track: The Principles of Managing
Configuration Management Plan
Common Challenges and Pitfalls
Managing Project Issues
The Goals, Objectives, and Principles of Project Issue Management
Key Features of Issue Management System
Options for Issue Log
Some Special Situations
Managing Project Risks
Key Risk Management Principles
The Essential Process for Managing Project Risks
The Common Sources of Project Risk
Powerful Risk Control Strategies
Are You Sure It's a Risk?
Managing Project Quality
What Is "Project Quality"?
Unique Aspects of Managing Project Quality
Principles of Managing Project Quality
Powerful Tools and Techniques for Project Quality
Powerful Quality Strategies
Typical Quality-Related Challenges
Leading a Project
More Than Managing
Where Is Leadership Needed on a Project?
Twelve Keys to Better Project Leadership
Power of Servant Leadership Approach
Managing Project Communications
What Are Project Communications?
The Importance of Project Communications
Why Communicating Can Be Tough
Seven Powerful Principles
Best Practices of Effective Project Communicators
Value of Reviewing Stakeholder Expectation Management
Critical Aspects of Expectations
Seven Master Principles of Expectation Management
Essential Elements of Managing Expectations
Keys to Better Project Team Performance
Ten Key Principles
Five Key Principles
Proven Techniques for Leading Cross-Functional Projects
Proven Techniques for Leading Cross-Cultural Projects
Proven Techniques for Leading Virtual Projects
First, Let's Clarify a Few Terms
Ten Proven Principles of Vendor Management
Twelve Tips for Buyers
Seven Tips for Sellers
Twelve Key Project Management Skills for Better
Stuff You Need to Know About Contracts
Ending a Project
Three Key Principles
Project End Checklist-13 Important Steps
Common Project Closing Challenges
Methods for Ending a Contract or a Project
ACCELERATING THE LEARNING CURVE...EVEN MORE
Making Better Use of Microsoft Project
Understand This ...and It All Becomes Easier
New Project Best Practices
Keys to Making Resource Leveling Work
Powerful Reporting Secrets
More Insights to a Better Project Schedule
When Reality Happens
What If I'm in a Project Management "Lite" Culture?
What If I Can't Develop a Detailed Schedule?
What If I Must Manage to a Hard Milestone Date?
What If I Have Difficult Resources?
What Can I Do About Turnover?
Tips for Managing a Selection Process
Tips for Managing a Testing Process
Intriguing Project Management Concepts and Topics
Project Management Offices
Portfolio Project Management
Critical Chain Project Management
Web-Based Project Management Software
Mind Mapping Tools
Value of Certifications
Project Management Training
As organizations continue to move toward "project-based" management to get more done with fewer resources, and as the demand for effective project managers continues to grow, more and more individuals find themselves with the opportunity to manage projects for the first time.
In an ideal world, every new project manager candidate would complete certified project management training programs and serve as an apprentice before starting his or her first project manager opportunity, but...this is the real world. In many cases, a quicker, more accessible, and more economical alternative is needed to guide these candidates in managing projects successfully the first time.
The Absolute Beginner's Guide to Project Management, Second Edition, is intended to provide this alternative with a helpful, fun, and informative style.
About This Book
Let's review the objectives and approach of this book.
The objectives of this book include the following:
* To be an easy-to-use tutorial and reference resource for any person managing their first project(s).
* To teach the key concepts and fundamentals behind project management techniques. If these are understood, they can be applied effectively independent of toolset, environment, or industry.
* To reduce the "on-the-job" learning curve by sharing the traits of successful projects and "lessons learned" from less-than-successful projects.
* To balance the breadth of topics covered with adequate depth in specific areas to best prepare a new project manager.
* To review the skills and qualities of effective project managers.
* To emphasize the importance of project "leadership" versus just project "management."
Consistent with the Absolute Beginner's Guide series, this book uses a teaching style to review the essential techniques and skills needed to successfully manage a project. By teaching style, we intend the following:
* A mentoring, coaching style.
* A fun, easy-to-read, practical style.
* Assumes that the reader does not have previous hands-on experience with project management.
* Teaches the material as if an instructor were physically present.
* Task-oriented, logically ordered, self-contained lessons (chapters) that can be read and comprehended in a short period of time (15-30 minutes).
* Emphasis on understanding the principle behind the technique or practice.
* Teaches the material independent of specific tools and methodologies.
* Teaches the material with the assumption that the reader does not have access to organizational templates or methodologies.
* Provides a summary map of the main ideas covered at the end of each chapter. Research has shown that this type of "mind-map" approach can drive better memory recollection when compared to traditional linear summary approaches.
Out-of-Scope - The scope of this book is clearly outlined in the table of contents, but as we will cover later, it is always good to review what is out of scope to ensure understanding of the scope boundaries. Because the field of project management is extremely broad, and we needed to draw the line somewhere, this book focuses on the proper management of a single project. As a result, the following advanced project management subjects are not covered in this book:
* Program management
* Enterprise portfolio management
* Enterprise resource management
* Advanced project risk management topics
* Advanced project quality management topics
* Advanced project procurement management topics
Who Should Read This Book?
The Absolute Beginner's Guide to Project Management, Second Edition, is recommended for any person who fits into one or more of the following categories:
* Individuals unsatisfied with other introductory project management books
* Individuals new to project management, such as
o Knowledge workers
o Functional managers
* Professionals taking a first project management assignment, such as
o Team leaders
o Project coordinators
o Project administrators
o Project support
o Functional managers
* Experienced project managers needing a refresher course
* Experienced project managers with limited formal project management education
How This Book Is Organized
This book has been divided into five parts:
* Part I, "Project Management Jumpstart," sets up the general framework for our project management discussion and accelerates your project management learning curve, including an insightful review of successful projects and project managers.
* Part II, "Project Planning," reviews the processes that establish the foundation for your project.
* Part III, "Project Control," reviews the processes that allow you to effectively monitor, track, correct, and protect your project's performance.
* Part IV, "Project Execution," reviews the key leadership and people-focused skills that you need to meet today's business demands.
* Part V, "Accelerating the Learning Curve...Even More," provides experienced insights and tips on making better use of MS Project, managing specific real-life project situations, and on many hot project management topics to further accelerate the knowledge base and skill level of the new project manager.
Conventions Used in This Book
* At the beginning of each chapter, you'll find a quick overview of the major topics that will be expounded upon as you read through the material that follows.
* The end of each chapter provides a list of key points along with a visual summary map.
* You will also find several special sidebars used throughout this book:
Note - These boxes highlight specific learning points or provide supporting information to the current topic.
Tip - These boxes highlight specific techniques or recommendations that could be helpful to most project managers.
Caution - These boxes highlight specific warnings that a project manager should be aware of.
© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.
About the Authors
Gregory M Horine (Indianapolis, IN) is a PMP/CCP-certified business technology and IT project management professional who has achieved nineteen years of successful results across multiple industries through the use of servant leadership principles. His primary areas of expertise and strength include project management and leadership; complex application development; enterprise solution development; business process analysis and improvement; data analysis and transformation; package implementation and integration; vendor and procurement management; regulatory and process compliance; and the effective use of project management tools. He is co-author of PMP Exam Cram 2.