101 Project Management Problems and How to Solve Them

Practical Advice for Handling Real-World Project Challenges

 101 Project Management Problems and How to Solve Them

Author: Tom Kendrick, PMP
Pub Date: December 2010
Print Edition: $19.95
Print ISBN: 9780814415573
Page Count: 272
Format: Paper or Softback
e-Book ISBN: 9780814415757

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Excerpt

Introduction

‘‘It depends.’’

Project management problems frequently arise as questions, and

most good project management questions have the same answer: ‘‘It

depends.’’

By definition, each project is different from other projects, so no

specific solution for a given problem is likely to work exactly as well for

one project as it might for another. That said, there are general principles

that are usually effective, especially after refining the response with

follow-up questions, such as ‘‘What does it depend on?’’ For many of

the project management problems included in this book, the discussion

begins with some qualifications describing what the response depends

on and includes factors to consider in dealing with the issue at hand.

This book is based on questions I have been asked in classes and

workshops, and in general discussions on project management regarding

frequent project problems. The discussions here are not on theoretical

matters (‘‘What is a project?’’), nor do they dwell on the self-evident

or trivial. The focus here is on real problems encountered by project

managers working in the trenches, trying to get their projects done in

today’s stress-filled environment. These responses are based on what

tends to work, at least most of the time, for those of us who lead actual

projects.

Some problems here relate to very small projects. Others are about

very large projects and programs. Still others are general, and include

some guidance on how you might go about applying the advice offered

in a particular situation. In all cases, your judgment is essential to solving

your particular problems. Consider your specific circumstances and

strive to ‘‘make the punishment fit the crime.’’ Adapt the ideas offered

here if they appear helpful. Disregard them if the advice seems irrelevant

to your project.

Several general themes recur throughout. Planning and organization

are the foundations for good project management. Confront issues and

problems early, when they are tractable and can be resolved with the

least effort and the fewest people. Escalate as a last resort, but never

hesitate to do so when it is necessary. People will treat you as you treat

them, so act accordingly. Good relationships and trust will make solving

any problem easier—you really do get by with a little help from your

friends.

Given the broad spectrum of project types and the overwhelming

number of ways that they can get into trouble, it’s unlikely that this (or

any) book will effectively resolve all possible problems. Nonetheless, I

hope that this book will help you to successfully complete your projects,

while retaining some of your sanity in the process.

Good luck!

Tom Kendrick

tkendrick@failureproofprojects.com

San Carlos, CA

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