Practical Project Management; Tips, Tactics, and Tools

Why did I choose this resource?Practical Project Management

I chose this resource to learn more about project management and what it entails.

What did you learn from it?

I learned the different processes and procedures involved in project management as well as the different approached towards project management.

Key Knowledge

  • Project Management Basics
    • NO SHORTCUTS in project management
    • Best Project Managers
      • Adjust to transforming conditions
      • Forcefully drive the project to completion
    • Project Managers are assisted on every project by:
      • Solid organizational framework
      • Skills of personnel appointed to the project
    • Work Breakdown Structure (WBS)
      • Exactly and entirely classify the work involved in the project as a whole
      • Break down the work into component tasks
      • Properly manages
        • time
        • resources
        • costs
  • Planning and Control
    • Initial project focus is on basic planning and control functions
      • Workscope, time, resources, and costs
  • The Planning Phase
    • Initial planning
      • Establish project objectives, define the work, determine the work timing, establish the resources, and establish the cost baseline
      • Identify work packages and tasks using the WBS
      • Determine a tentative schedule using the Critical Path Method (CPM)
    • Assign resources using a resource aggregation histogram
    • Amend original timeline into a resource-adjusted schedule
    • Pause scheduling and determine cost rates for required resources
    • Create a time-phased budget called a Cash Flow Plan (or Project Expenditure Plan) by applying the cost baseline to the resource-adjusted schedule
  • Setting the Baseline
    • Identify possible problems by vigilantly reviewing the baseline schedule, resource loading plan, and budget
    • Use Critical Path software to locate spots of concern
    • Finalize a baseline plan and use it to gauge progress and costs
      • Also contains milestones and trigger points
  • The Tracking Phase
    • Track work progress
      • When a task is started and completed or what percentage has been completed to date
      • Use information to perform a periodic Earned Value Analysis (multiply percentage of completed work by the budget)
        • Budget Cost of Work Performed (BCWP) compared to the Budget Cost of Work Scheduled (BCWS) equals the Schedule Variance (SV)
          • Give your progress in terms of time
        • Actual Expenditures (ACWP) compared to the earned value (BCWP) equals the Cost Variance (CV)
      • ALWAYS graph progress by comparing current data with the baseline plan
  • Project Management Organization
    • The Functional Organization
      • Traditional approach, focuses on operational discipline
        • Routine work and consistent standards
    • The Project Organization
      • Organization is created with the sole purpose of accomplishing the project
      • Setbacks include
        • ineffective use of resources
        • harmful effect on institutional memory due to no continuity of personnel
    • The Matrix Organization
      • Blends the functional and project methods
      • At least two managers; functional manager and project manager
      • Used by companies who are engaged in multiple and/or overlapping projects
      • Combines benefits of project organization and institutional knowledge
    • The Teams Organization
      • Consists of a task forces or cross-functional team of specialists working full or part time on a project
      • Project manager chosen by either the senior manager or the team
      • May increase productivity, diminish cost, improve creativity, encourage strategic initiatives, and enhance project performance
  • Leadership and Methodology
    • Central Project Management Office (CPO)
      • Offers project leadership, skilled project managers, and other resources and technology
      • Repository of project experience, models, and standards
      • Organizes projects across a company, assists in resource management and allocation, and monitors how various projects relate to others occurring simultaneously in the organization
    • MUST use a computer-based project management program
    • Implementation Plan
      • Directive from senior management; provides support for the project management process
      • Procedures; define the implementation process
      • Implementation Plan; shows the steps to follow and a schedule
      • Kick-Off Program; make a big deal out of the implementation

How are you using what you learned?

I am using what I learned to become more familiar with project management and be able to assist in project management responsibilities.

Key Changes / Key Actions

  • Continue research on project management
  • Evaluate our current project management processes and procedures


  • Name : Practical Project Management; Tips, Tactics, and Tools
  • Author : Harvey A. Levine
  • Link to Book

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