Project Management Training Module 1 Overview

The purpose of these Training Modules is to guide you through the Be a Better Sheepdog site in a logical sequence to help you to become a better Project Manager whether you are new to the role or wish to improve on your performance. This is Module 1 of 8 of and provides an Overview of the training and some basic concepts; see other modules at the bottom of the page.

A Project Manager is a necessary evil

Benefits of using the Be a Better Sheepdog site

  • It's a free resource. I'm not trying to sell you something, just help improve budding Project Managers around the world based on my experience
  • It's written by a practising Project Manager, not a trainer. So it isn't designed to help you pass an exam, just improve your chances of a successful outcome in your Project
  • It's written in small chunks, you can dip in over time and easily use to re-cap when actually running a Project
  • It's Fun - you will see cartoons and a bit of humour along the way. Project Management is a deadly serious subject so it is good to lighten the mood along the journey
  • It's easier to remember? Well, there is some evidence to indicate that pictures, proverbs (I like to use proverbs & analogies) and humour aid memory retention. I wrote an article for the Association of Project Management about this subject, if you are interested in the background, use the link above (hyperlinks are heavily used within the site to allow you to get to related information in new windows)
The idea that a Sheepdog is a good analogy for a Project Manager is indeed a bit tongue in cheek but I explain more here

Some initial basics for you to understand

You should understand some high level basics about Projects before delving into the detail.

1) A Project is a temporary venture with a start and an end using a temporary organisational structure to achieve an agreed objective within an defined timescale. Well, that's my description anyway, there are many others - here is the PRINCE2 one "a management environment that is created for the purpose of delivering one or more business products according to a specified Business Case".

2) Project Management is all about how we manage this temporary venture and is common to all types of Projects whatever the "technical" activities required (anything which isn't related to the management is often named "technical").

3) A Methodology for Project Management is a useful thing to have as it provides a framework and common language which has shown to help achieve success. I am most familiar with PRINCE2 but there is also APM. But beware, I believe there are gaps in these methodologies such as what I call the "human side" of dealing with people and the behavioural characteristics to have or develop to be a successful Project Manager. Have a read of this post for more on this topic.

4) What are the key processes for a Project Manager to manage? Well, methodologies such as PRINCE2 have many more processes but in my simple brain there are only three basic processes as per this cartoon below:
Be a Better Sheepdog 3 step process for running a Project
5) There may be other (technical) processes specific to the Project in question which you need to weave into the Project plan. An example from the world of IT is the waterfall development process consisting of various "phases" of activities such as Analysis, Design, Develop, Test, Implement. The principle is that you complete a phase before falling over the waterfall into the next phase.

6) It is important to appreciate what Success means in Projects. Please read this post Project Success - there are two dimensions to consider

Be a Better Sheepdog Training Modules

  1. Module 1 - OVERVIEW - an overview of the training and basic concepts (this module)
  2. Module 2 - PM SKILLS - what skills and behavioural characteristics you need to develop to be a successful Project Manager?
  3. Module 3 - DEFINE Process - describes this important process to ensure that we have identified the Owner of the Project, agreed the objective, developed the plans etc
  4. Module 4 - DO Process - executing the Project ensuring that the Project Manager is monitoring, controlling, communicating, escalating when required etc
  5. Module 5 - CLOSE Process - things to complete before the Project ends and the temporary project organisation is disbanded
  6. Module 6 - OTHER information not already covered
  7. Module 7 - IT PROJECT specific information, skip if you aren't running such projects
  8. Module 8 - RECAP & TEST - A recap and an opportunity to test yourself and join the "Be a Better Sheepdog" Hall of Fame
  9. Project Management Manual in Proverb Cartoons - if you prefer your training visual, this is for you

1 comments:

Nice blog and your all presenting information are very great and it's really good well done.
PMP Training Online

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