IMEO International Mass Event Organization based on Recent Experience of Euro 2012

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1 IMEO International Mass Event Organization based on Recent Experience of Euro Name of the project: Project Management 2. Leader of the workshop (materials' author): Szymon Włochowicz 1

2 Objectives of organising workshops and basic assumptions The workshop aims to provide its participants with a basic knowledge and skills of planning projects. Having finished the workshop the participant should feel comfortable with the task of planning an average project of small complexity. The objective of the workshop is to transfer a basic theoretical knowledge and to support it with practical exercises. The workshop does not aim at providing its participants with skills in planning big projects. It does not also intend to convey a general knowledge on all processes of project management. The workshop assumes the participants will work on their own ideas of projects. It also assumes that earlier participants will be provided with the knowledge on proper initiation of projects taking into account business justification of starting up projects in organizations. The workshop does not deal with running projects of one s own. The workshop is intended for participants. During the workshop the participants will work teams of 4-6 people (the total number of groups is 3-6). The workshop will take 2.5 hours the duration significantly depends on involvement of the group into practical exercises. Materials and equipment required The workshop involves the usage of the following elements: An open space room where the participants will be able to work in groups (by the rule of thumb the room shall be big enough to accommodate twice as big number of participants sitting in classroom style setting) A computer projector with a screen to convey the theoretical part Flipcharts 5 sheets of paper par group is required 50 post-it notes per group A set of 3 markers of different colours per group The scope of knowledge acquired before the workshop The workshop omits the subject of initiating projects, in particular the evaluation of project ideas in organizations according to the alignment of project objectives to the strategic goals of the organization. It is necessary for workshop participants to have prior knowledge of proper initiation of projects in particular: How to analyse the so called project background including organizational, environmental and strategic determinants. How to correctly define project objectives, how to verify the compliance of projects objectives with the organization goal, how to evaluate projects How to identify and carry out the analysis of stakeholders of the project 2

3 How to build the project management structure to allow for proper division of responsibilities in the project in particular taking into account the role of the project sponsor and and the project manager. Failure to meet the above entrance requirements may result in the fact that participants will acquire operational competences to solve problems irrelevant from the organizations strategic perspective. This will result in efficient leading an organization towards interests contradictory to the organization, its environment or its owners. Theoretical aspects of the workshops Basic notions What is the project? According to the definition of the Project Management Institute: A project can be defined as a temporary endeavour undertaken to create a unique product, service or result. The project has the following features: a set of tasks the project cannot consist in a simple activity, it must be characterised by certain complexity, must be divisible into separate tasks innovative- - activities undertaken within a project must be innovative from the point of view of an organization. Innovativeness may concern both what needs to be done as well as in what way the work will be done. temporary- the project must have a definite beginning and an end. Activities with undefined duration do not constitute a project and cannot be managed by project management methods and techniques an objective the project must have an objective that indicates completion Apart from projects also processes are realized in organizations. A process is also a collection of tasks but realized to achieve a repetitive result. The lack of innovativeness of tasks carried out constitutes a basic difference between the process and the project. From the point of view of an organization the process is much more effective than the project due to it repetitiveness and the possibility of statistic, operational and cost related control. Due to their innovative nature projects carry an increased risk of failure. Questions that help to define whether an endeavour is a project: Does this activity consist of more than one task? Do we do it for the first time? Does the job involve more than one person/one organizational unit? Is there a necessity of planning actions? Is there a defined deadline for delivering results? Will we repeat these activities in the future? 3

4 Project management According to the definition of the PMI. Project management consists in applying knowledge, skills and techniques to activities of the project in order to fulfil its requirements. In practice project management involves: 1. Initiating a project 2. Planning a project 3. Executing a project 4. Monitoring and controlling a project 5. Closing a project The above mentioned activities shall be performed in a way that makes achieving its objectives the most probable. The five points above define groups of processes which are carried out within the project. Project management can be described by means of processes. Regardless of the fact that each project is innovative, managing each project is similar/ identical. Thus managing a construction project may be similar to managing a project related to an organizational change. Each project requires the execution of a set of the same management processes. Execution details may differ due to a different subject of the project. The interdependencies between particular groups of processes are depicted by the picture below 1. Drawing 1 Project management process groups The arrows portray the flow of information and processes. Attention! This is a simplified picture and in bigger projects interdependencies between particular process groups are more complex. It is worthwhile mentioning that you can get back many times to the planning process within the lifietime of one project. The project can be re-planned if during the supervision of the 1 On the basis of Project Management Institute, Project Management Body of Knowledge 4

5 execution such a need arises. However within one project you cannot get back to the processes group of initiating a project. If the project needs initiating again, it probably results from the change to the objectives of the project. However this results in a new project with different objectives and the necessity to check the best ways of achieving these objectives. Initiating a project The project initiation process group leads to a correct definition of why the project should be started, what key parameters of an organization and/or its environment will be changed, what results will be achieved and who will be involved in the project. Finishing the project initiation process will allow us to correctly plan the project so that its completion could cause an expected positive change to the environment of the project. Drawing 2 Project initiation processes (simplified) In its simplest form, the project initiation phase comprises: describing the project background, defining project objectives, stating the project definition and naming project stakeholders. Due to the assumptions of this workshop, only one step of the project initiation will be presented, namely the project definition. The correct project initiation requires completing all four steps enlisted above. The simplification in this document results only from the assumptions of the workshop. Project definition The project definition defines what exactly we are to do in the project (the so called initial definition of the scope) as well as its boundary conditions (a budget and a scope). Thus each project definition should contain three elements: The scope should be defined in sufficient details so that one can determine undoubtedly what the project is about. However it is not the place to define the scope in every detail. Time needed to complete the project. It should be realistically determined.. Resources- necessary for realization of the project. Usually resources are defined in money terms or man hours/man days needed to complete the project. Resources should be defined adequately for the scope and the duration of the project.. At this stage the estimate of the time and resources should be expressed approximately. At further stages of planning the project, the estimates concerning the time and resources necessary for completion of the project will be made precise and are likely to change. An example of the project definition: 5

6 Drawing 3 Project definition example It is worth making a remark that the project definition is wrongly treated as the first, the only and the most important element of initiating a project. It is a mistake. The definition results from the process, in particular from establishing project objectives. The definition cannot be created separately from project objectives and similarly one cannot provide a definition at first and then objectives. A project is not an end in itself. It is a means of achieving goals of an organization. Below there is a checklist helping to define whether the definition has been rightly adopted: The definition was provided after the project objectives The definition includes the scope The scope has been explicitly defined The scope relates to the project objectives The definition includes the time The time is realistic The definition includes resources The resources are adequate to the scope and the time. Planning a project Planning is about defining the best way of taking actions in order to achieve project objectives bearing in mind the boundary conditions. Planning in its simplest form consists of four steps: defining project delivarables, defining the work breakdown structure (WBS), defining responsibilities and building a network of the project. 6

7 Drawing 4 Project planning processes (simplified) Project deliverables Project deliverables are artifacts which have to be made/ elaborated so that the project succeeds. Having all deliverables on one hand means fulfilling the entire scope of the project and on the other hand it means achievement of the project goals. The project can result in deliverables like: Real object (a prototype of a device or a working computer programme) Outcome of the action (trained employees) An ability of an organization to provide a service (an organization applying ISO 9001 norms). Project deliverables must be related to project objectives. Elaboration of all project products must lead to achievement of all assumed project objectives nothing is missing. Success criteria can be defined for deliverables which will determine when we consider a deliverable good enough. The criteria can be both qualitative and quantitative. All of them must be fulfilled before the project s closing. If a criterion is not met, the deliverable is considered undelivered and not closed. The checklist used to define whether the list of deliverables is correct: Each deliverable is necessary for achievement of project objectives Having all deliverables will ensure achievement of the objectives None of the deliverables is an action Each deliverable is defined explicitly 7

8 Quantitative criteria are supplied with a measurement, the way of measuring and an anticipated value. Qualitative criteria: meeting the criterion is explicit. WBS Work Breakdown Structure WBS (Work Breakdown Structure) is a hierarchical division of activities in the project which allows us to define all actions needed for achievement of project objectives namely elaboration of project deliverables. It assigns and makes the scope of the project precise. To prepare a WBS for the project you should prepare: a. A big board b. Yellow sheets c. A meeting of the entire team. The process of preparing WBS: 1. Hang the scope at the top of the board 2. Place project deliverables below 3. For each deliverable ask a question: what do have to do to deliver this? 4. For each identified task ask a question: What smaller tasks can it be broken down into? The elaborated WBS is a hierarchical structure with the meaning as below. Drawing 5 WBS structure explanation 8

9 Important definitions: Complex tasks- an activity divided into at least two minor tasks or work packages Work package- an activity that is not broken down in the WBS for a particular project The WBS should contain all tasks which will be managed in the project. At the same time the WBS is not a TO DO list and it usually is defined on the higher abstraction level. A proper size of a single work package has not been made precise it depends on the level of complexity of the project, anticipated accuracy in management and the designation of a particular WBS. The WBS may change at later stages, both when planning the project as well as when executing the project. The WBS is a tool and should always reflect the reality and the most detailed real plans of the project. The WBS is not a tool for managing projects. It does not provide information about logical interdependencies between tasks, responsible people or estimates about time consumption. The checklist helping to define if the WBS is correct: The WBS elaborated by the entire team The scope of the project is placed at the highest level Project deliverables are placed at the first level None of the elements has more than 9 subordinate elements Each broken down task has at least 2 subordinate elements 100% principle: Completion of all subordinate tasks results in superordinate task All tasks describe what, there is no description of who and when There are no abbreviations, tasks are described in a comprehensible way even if the post-it notes are taken out of the context Each task one can name a person in charge of its completion Responsibilities Responsibilities are defined in order to assign all people involved in the project. Defining project responsibilities involves managing information needs of the project and its environment. Each task should be assigned with only one person in charge of completion of the task. It can be a person different from the person doing the job. One has to separate the role of the responsible person and the role of a doer. In project management tasks are assigned to accountable people namely to those who will answer questions about work progress and will suffer consequences of possible delays in execution of the tasks. When we cannot clearly define accountability for execution of a task, maybe this task should be divided into smaller tasks whose accountability can be explicitly assigned. The WBS cannot provide tasks with more than one person accountable. It is the most frequently made mistakes when constructing a WBS. Assigning two or more people responsible to a task leads to the lack of clear accountability, delays and internal conflicts in a team over responsibility 9

10 for those delays. Usually a breakdown into smaller tasks can prevent such situations (tasks can be done parallel) which may be assigned to one person only. Network of the project The project network defines logical interdependencies between tasks and the sequence of completing tasks in the project. The process of building a project network allows us to verify the correctness (completeness) of WBS preparation. In order to build a project network prepare: a. A big board to write on b. The WBS on yellow pages c. A meeting of the entire team The process of building the network: 1. Remove all complex tasks 2. Draw a starting point 3. Choose work packages that can be begun right away at the start of the project 4. Add work packages that may be begun after the previous ones are finished 5. By means of arrows mark the logic of doing work packages: which work package follows the other 6. Check the completeness and correctness An example network of a simple project is presented below. The significance of the above network: Drawing 6 Simple network diagram example After project commencement work packages A and B can be carried out Work package C can be started after finishing tasks A and B Work package D can be started after finishing task C When work package D is completed the entire project finishes In order to check the correctness of the project network one has go through the entire network from end to beginning. Each task is questioned about completeness and the necessity of tasks and relations. For example with regard to task C above the following questions should be asked: Is completion of work package A and work package B necessary to start C? 10

11 Is completion of A and B enough to carry out C? The checklist helping to define if the project network is correct is as follows: The project network was prepared by the entire team The project network was prepared on paper/board The network includes only work packages There is one starting point of the project There is one ending point of the project There are no loose packages each one has at least one incoming or outgoing arrow There are no loops All arrows are necessary. Estimates and the critical path Estimating is a process of determining anticipated duration of particular project tasks. Estimates are most often made about time consumption (how long will it take to complete the task). Sometimes in order to define project costs, estimates are made about labour consumption (how many hours will be devoted to carry out a tasks). Estimates should be made by the person who will be performing the task (R). In the event of any problems the task may be broken down into smaller work packages. Three common methods of estimation are used to determine time consumption: Expertise Comparative analysis Historical data It is important to make estimates about time consumption in the project in the same unit for each and every work package. (hour, day, week etc.). A critical path shows the longest way through the project network indicating the shortest realization time. The critical path includes all work packages whose one day delay causes the delay of the entire project by one day. Picture below marks a critical path in red. Drawing 7 Critical path example 11

12 The critical path is a tool of an active control of the project. It allows a project manager to focus on specific work packages in the project. Work packages on the critical path draw special attention due to the fact that their delays have a direct impact on the entire project. The critical path is not permanent and may change during the project. A change to the critical path may result from estimates of labour consumption in particular tasks or completion of tasks within different time than the time planned. The change involves shifting the focus point by the project manager. Gantt Chart Gantt chart constitutes the simplest tool of scheduling a project. It presents in the simple visual way to present start and finish timeframe for realization of particular tasks in the project. Gantt chart is prepared by putting all work packages from the project network on the time line. Axis X denotes time and the beginning of the project is marked by axis X crossing axis Y. Axis Y comprises all work packages. Work packages are outlined in horizontal bars whose lengths equal the time needed to complete them. Work packages are outlined in relation to logical dependence between them resulting from the project network. It means that the sequence of performing work packages is translated into the time line. Gantt chart allows a project manager to present the project duration in a visual way. Additionally Gantt chart helps to define which work packages should be carried out in any time of the project. It leads to an easy control of the project. It is worthwhile noting that Gantt chart may and should change during the project in line with information about the real time consumption for particular tasks. Estimates about time consumption are also updated. A simple Gantt chart is presented in the drawing below. This chart may be supplemented by additional information about people in charge of the work package, the critical path, logical dependence of tasks etc. Drawing 8 Gantt chart example 12

13 Project monitoring and controlling The project monitoring may be divided into operational and strategic supervision Operational monitoring Strategic monitoring More or less once a week + everyday as required Checking work progress Involving the project team Confirming effectiveness of project execution More or less once a month Checking the level of goal achievement All stakeholders involved (may be in terms of being informed) Confirmation of the rationale for project realization Operational monitoring makes use of operational meetings run according to defined set of questions that are addressed to all members of the project team: Questions: 1. What have you done since our last meeting? 2. What are you going to do be our next meeting? 3. Are there any impediments in your way? 4. ( How much time do you need to finish the current task?) The first question seeks information about what happened, what is the current state of works. The second question looks forward into the future and checks whether the nearest project plans are being realized. The third question is an open question allowing us to discover all hindrances that might result in the failure of the project. The question encourages team members to actively share information about potential dangers to the project. The fourth question is an additional question asked when following the time of the project is important. This question gives an idea about the state of works and time of completing the current task. Strategic monitoring is conducted to inform stakeholders and to get a feedback about current perception of the project and its environment. Communication management is based on the communication plan. The communication plan is a document defining the way of providing project stakeholders with information. It is approved by all stakeholders. The communication plan usually defines recipients and for each of them: The type of information The purpose of conveying the information The way of delivering information The frequency of delivering information The most important part of strategic monitoring is to confirm that project objectives have remained unchanged. 13

14 Workshop plan No Time [min] Type/ method 1 10 Organization/ discussion Contents Greeting participants Collecting expectations Confronting expectations with the scope of the workshop 2 10 Theory / lecture Basic notions: Project Project management 3 10 Theory / lecture Initiating the project Process of initiating the project Project definition 4 15 Practice / exercises Exercise project definition The purpose of describing the project definition according to guidelines If participants are not divided into groups, they should be split into groups When working the person running the workshop should actively support groups by directing them towards correct solutions In case of small number of groups (3-4) all definitions can be presented, in case of bigger number of groups two example definitions can be presented 5 15 Theory / lecture Planning a project Planning process Project deliverables WBS Responsibilities 25 Practice / exercises WBS exercise The purpose is to create project deliverables and the WBS for the project that has been defined in the previous exercise The WBS should include work packages When working the person running the workshop should actively support groups by directing them towards correct solutions 14

15 If a group finished earlier, it receives task of assigning responsibility Finally presentations of 1-2 WBS (max 5 min) are made 15 Theory / lecture 15 Practice / exercises 10 Theory / lecture 15 Theory / lecture 10 Organization/ discussion Planning a project Project network Estimates Project network exercise The purpose is to build a project network on the basis of the previously elaborated WBS When working the person running the workshop should actively support groups by directing them towards correct solutions If a group finishes earlier, it receives a task of estimating the duration of a task and a critical path Finally 1-2 project networks are presented (max 5 min). Planning a project Gantt chart Supervising the project realization Summing up Referring to expectations Invitation to develop further insight into the matter Education outcomes The workshop will result in: 1. Knowledge acquired by participants with regard to basic project planning tools: a. Definition b. Products c. WBS d. Project network e. Gantt chart 2. The knowledge acquired by participants with regard to basics of supervising the project realizations 3. Skills of using tools acquired by participants: 15

16 a. Definition b. WBS c. Project network The knowledge combined with abilities allows participants to independently plan a medium size project of minor complexity. The workshop may also encourage participants to broaden the subject of project management especially when it comes to people who need such knowledge/skills. In other words: participants should be made aware that information provided during the workshop constitutes a very small fraction of the entire project management. References 1. Project Management Institute (2013) A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK Guide), Project Management Institute 2. Alistair Cockburn (2006) Agile Software Development: The Cooperative Game, Addison-Wesley Professional 3. Mary Poppendieck (2003), Lean Software Development: An Agile Toolkit, Addison- Wesley Professional 4. Thomas Mochal (2011), Lessons in Project Management 2 nd Edition, Apress 5. Eliyahu M. Goldratt (1997), Critical Chain: A Business Novel, North River Press 16

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