For a project manager, the ultimate compliment is when people recognize you are in control of your project.
For the experienced project manager, there are a lot of points of control. Or, put another way, for the unskilled PM, there are a lot of places you can lose control.
That’s why I started the project of gathering some of the best OnlinePMCourses articles about points of control. There are too many points of control for one eBook volume, so this will be the first. I have firm plans for a second.
In this one, you’ll learn about some really foundational points of control:
A Robust Project Definition
This is the topic of Chapter 1, and nothing could give you a firmer base for controlling your project than this. Without it, it would be like trying to build a house, a multi-story, or even a skyscraper… without foundations.
A Successful Project Kick-off Meeting
You need to engage your team from the start. Where you bring them in will depend on the way you choose to run your project, and on your circumstances. Maybe they will help you build your project definition. Or maybe your kick-off is your first chance to share work you’ve done alone or with a small group, on your project definition. But, without a doubt, a good kick-off meeting sets the stage for feeling in control of your team.
A Sound Business Case
No well-governed project will proceed without a sound business case. And no well-run organization would countenance spending significant money and taking real risk without one. It uses your project definition as the basis for answering: ‘Why should we invest our time and resources, and place our organization at risk?’
Keeping Your Boss Happy
Whether you are working for your usual boss, a client or customer, or a project sponsor, no project manager will feel fully in control, unless they know they can keep their boss happy… at least most of the time. So, this is an essential point of control for me.
Rigorous Change Control
You have defined your project. And, you will then develop detailed specifications. But the real world will now start to gnaw away at these rigid certainties. Opportunities, threats, technology shifts, social pressures, competitor’s actions, and supply hassles are only a small handful of the causes of pressure to change elements of your project. You’d love to lock it all down hard, and say no. But that would be unrealistic. So, the next best thing is to be in control of the requests you get for change.
So, these are the four points of control we’ll look at in this book. And, in addition, I have wrapped in three bonus Appendices:
1.Project Kick-off Meeting Checklist
2.How to Diagnose what Your Boss Wants
3.Change Control Process
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