OUR BLOG: HONEST VIEW OF THE GOOD, BAD & UGLY
IN THE WORLD OF DELIVERING PROJECTS

Issue with Certification Training

The huge issue with certification training: Is that it’s like mixing oil with water There has been an enormous growth in certification and related training courses (e.g. PMP) in recent years. Firstly there is nothing inherently wrong with certification itself or certification 'courses'.  However there are major issues around the difference between certification 'training' and courses that teach real skills which deliver measurable improvements in organsational competence.  They are not the same and pretending they ...
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Managing home improvement projects – lessons learned

Managing a major home improvement project - lessons learned from real projects Many of us get involved at least once in a major home improvement project.   Some turn out fine but sadly too many go very badly wrong, sometimes disastrously. The majority that go wrong do so for common reasons. If you follow all of the following you will minimise the chance of major issues on your project and ensure that any issues you have ...
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Project Management Group

Project management group with a difference: An invitation to participate - starting in 2017: We operate exclusively in the area of project management and have some pretty firm beliefs about what is important in being a successful project manager and delivering projects well.  Something that all of us would probably agree can be a challenging task.  We believe passionately in the value of skilled project managers and disciplined project management at the organisational level. Our ...
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Methods, methodologies, frameworks and Bodies of Knowledge (BoKs)

Difference between Project Management frameworks, methodologies, methods and Bodies of Knowledge (BoKs): In many online project management forums, discussions often incorrectly classify Project Management artefacts.  For example, calling Agile a methodology when it is not a methodology at all. Agile is a set of values and principles – these alone do not make a methodology. Lifecycles: In general, a lifecycle is the major stages that something goes through as it evolves or grows.  Projects evolve ...
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Is the word ‘control’ a good or a bad thing in projects?

What is 'project control'? The word 'control' in the world of projects generates a lot of controversy, but we would say through a lack of appreciation of what it really means and in this post we will explain why. So let’s look at one extreme view: can it ever even exist? Some say that you can’t use the word control on projects as projects carry a great deal of uncertainty and it gives the impression of the opposite.  ...
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When Agile can’t be used on projects

Purpose of this Post There are some proposing that Agile could be used on virtually any kind of project.  Agile contains some great ideas and some of the practices of Agile can be used on almost any project.  However the heart of Agile, being incremental product development and flexibility are always going to be limited to certain projects and circumstances.  Let me use a real example to share why. State of the art Hospital Project A contractor has a design and build ...
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Agile Versus Waterfall?

The Pros and Cons of Agile and Waterfall Agile and Waterfall (1) are potentially two very different ways of delivering projects.  Firstly we will describe them both and then compare their respective advantages and disadvantages. Waterfall (V) Model: (click to enlarge) Waterfall (1) projects go through a number of sequential or overlapping phases.  This defines the life-cycle of the development effort of the project.  The principal difference with Agile is that in Waterfall, requirements are defined near the start ...
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How to set Smart Objectives

Setting Smart Project Objectives - An Example All projects benefit from having crystal clear objectives. However, no matter how obvious this may seem they are often far from clear or even plain wrong.  'SMART objectives' tries to help with this question but in the world of projects this can be extended even more. This may sound obvious but it is a really common mistake: We see many projects every year.  One of our first questions is always ...
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Example Project risks – good and bad practice:

Firstly, poor examples: taken from page 1 of the world's favourite search engine Projects always carry risk.  If you search online for “example project risks” there are many extremely poor examples especially on page 1 of the world’s favourite search engine.  Most are very misleading, at best.  We see many real risk registers every year and their contents are often unfit for purpose. This post shows why. The PMI defines project risk as: “an event or condition ...
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New video – what’s really important in project management?

We have released the short and punchy video, which describes a number of things we see in customers businesses who are more successful at delivering projects.  This challenges some of the current trends in project management. Enjoy and if you like this please share with others:   © PMIS Consulting Limited - all rights reserved.  
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How to create a work breakdown structure (WBS)

Purpose of a WBS A work breakdown structure is one of the most useful things you can have on a  project.  It has an initial purpose in the planning phase: to enable the definition and capture of the complete scope of work of a project, so that estimating and planning is effective. In the delivery phases, the WBS can then be used to help for example with assessing progress against workscope and enable analysis of performance against budgets ...
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How to really learn project management lessons

Ways to transfer and share lessons successfully: You hear the expression “lessons learned” all the time, but what does it mean?  Sadly, too often it means a single meeting, followed by the publication of a set of minutes, capturing the 'lessons learned'. Job done ! Really? Actually 'learning' from lessons is really hard. This post provides the basis of doing this more successfully. So let’s look at the challenges when we do this and some better ideas: It ...
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