March 29, 2012 at 9:29 pm #157526
Waterfall, Agile, Lean, XP, etc.
Lots to choose from.
What do you use in practice, and what would you like to be using?
March 29, 2012 at 9:32 pm #157542
Mine is a combination of Lean and Agile, using Kanban as the visual method for organizing our team’s work, communicating status, etc.
The focus on single-piece flow and elimination of multitasking are very important to me, as well as the focus on value and elimination of waste via mapping and improving the value stream.
April 4, 2012 at 2:15 am #157540
my current position is now requiring me to do project management in addition to the work load. How do you balance the work and the project management.
April 11, 2012 at 1:33 pm #157538
It really depends on the situation. Dr. Wysocki has a great chart that helps you choose when to use the right project management method:
When both your goal and solution are clear, use traditional project management. When your goal is clear but you are not sure about the solution, use an agile project management method (such as the Adaptive Project Framework). Otherwise, you will want to use an extreme project management method.
This is better explained in his book, Effective Project Management: Traditional, Adaptive, Extreme. It’s really not a choice between using just one project management method. A project manager should be well versed in many methodologies and tools so that they can effectively choose the correct method.
April 11, 2012 at 7:48 pm #157536
I like it, thanks Bill!
Although I will say this….Lean is valuable in all of these realms. It applies to operations where the goals and solutions are clear and repeated on a regular basis, and on agile software projects too where requirements are changing daily. That makes me think…perhaps it’s incorrect for me to call Lean a methodology.
April 11, 2012 at 7:50 pm #157534
Great question Linda, and difficult to answer. I’m also a systems engineer in addition to my project management role.
For me, it’s about cutting out the least important things, getting really crazy about productivity and self-organization, etc. I use personal kanban, only check email at a few specific times during the day, and do other things to limit distractions and multi-tasking as much as I can.
However as the project manager, I drop everything if someone on my team has a problem. It’s my job to remove obstacles from their path when they need me to, and empower them to do the same for themselves. So it’s always a struggle!
April 12, 2012 at 9:07 pm #157532
For large, complex IT&C programs and projects I intensively use PRINCE2:2005/2009 PMM with extended content templates, combined with PMI PMBOK ANSI V4 Standard recommendations for elements which are missing from PRINCE2 and specific ITIL V3 elements. For quality plan, depending on the project specialist/technical deliverable product types I sometimes apply different techniques from 6 Sigma DMAIC/DMADV (Black Belt Professional). If the project itself is a software project or it includes among other specific IT stages at least a stage with software development, then the specific SW department team usually applies CMMI-DEV 1.2, Agile, DSDM Atern, or even the clasic Waterfall method for the specific stage to be embedded in the global IT project managed under PRINCE2. There were some SAP projects directly managed with ASAP/SOLMAN combined with some PMI PMBOK items, especially for project management plan and quality plan. Some projects requesting ORACLE components were managed under proprietary AIM and/or OUM based.
Anyway, there are many project management methodologies (PMM) and other PM standards with recommendations (e.g. the new overarching ISO 21500 Standard), but for excellent practical results the project management art consists among other aspects in combining the best practices and recommendations from PMMs and PM Standards in compliance with possible customer/client requirements for a specific methodology of management to be used. In a project-oriented company with a PMO, its PM team may design and implement a company internal PMM based on different open standard recommendations (e.g. ISO 21500) and related templates for specific internal and external projects. I use also two such PMMs for internal specific projects, or for small-to-medium complexity client projects, one being a nice PRINCE2-based subset, the other using the concepts and a templates subset based on the PMI PMBOK ANSI Standard recommendations with new ideas from ISO 21500. Anyway, the internal projects and their management must be aligned to company strategic management and planning, as some are resulting from strategic objectives and related business cases, but this another subject to be discussed.
April 12, 2012 at 10:29 pm #157530
Thanks Mihail, very well said. There are some things in there like CMMI-DEV 1.2 that I’ve never heard of before!
May 21, 2012 at 4:34 pm #157528
All projects require management. Similarly, all books require authoring. The reader does not care what tools were applied. Reader satisfaction is based upon outcome and content. In Project Management, the level of resources and effort applied to plan and execute a project requires a proportional application of resources and tools. Any project must be broken into logical work packages. These packages subsequently require sequencing and prioitization in the order that they need to occur. Each work package is further sub-divided into required resources, schedules and budgets. This process of decomposing is what we refer to as “work breakdown structure”. The upfront planning package requires a clear and early definition of details, metrics, functional skills required and initial task sorting. Using the 80 hour rule of thumb to divide tasks requires attention to detail; however, is essential for project members to focus on deliverables and allows an accurate application of metrics and milestones. Communicating the project’s desired outcome to all project participants and stakeholders is the second step. Clearly articulating a plan or vision of task breakdown, allocated schedules, task assignments, required reporting metrics and allocated resources is essential to establishing a successful outcome. Detecting linkage and predecessor tasks must next involve the entire project team’s participation and is key to establishing ownership by all project members. Success is my favorite outcome, ownership by the entire team is the only methodology required.
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