Managing projects

Articles and posts about managing technology projects, especially in light of the distinctive characteristics of technical people or geeks

Aligning Technology Solutions With Business Needs

Posted by on Sep 9, 2010 in Managing projects, News & commentary | 0 comments

Every consultant dreads this conversation, but eventually we all have it.  Invariably, it strikes at moments of great pride.  You’re proudly showing a client the fantastic results of your brilliant work.  You’re prepared for adulation, accolades and appreciation, but then the client says something like: “That’s not what I asked for” Or “That may be what I asked for, but it’s not what I want.” Or “That won’t help me.” Ouch.  That hurts. Your victory is suddenly a defeat.  You may lose a client.  You may not get paid. Like...

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Monitoring Project Progress

Posted by on Sep 9, 2010 in Managing projects, News & commentary | 0 comments

Too often failing projects surprise us.    Have you ever had a project that seemed to be going along just fine, and then, when the delivery deadline drew near, suddenly, everyone’s two months late?  It leads you to wonder, “How could I have missed that this project was two months late?”  “What planet was I on where this project appeared to be on time?” Given that approximately three quarters of all technical projects fail to meet their schedule, budget or feature set goals, you’d think we would be better at spotting groups that are “off the...

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Should You Euthanize Your Project?

Posted by on Sep 9, 2010 in Managing projects, News & commentary | 0 comments

You probably haven’t thought about inviting Dr. Kevorkian to one of your project meetings, but maybe you should.  Although you might not want to join Dr. Kevorkian’s well publicized crusade to legalize physician assisted suicide, he has some very valuable lessons to teach us about delivering successful IT projects. As IT professionals, we frequently find ourselves desperately trying to keep dying projects alive, when we should perhaps consider whether to help them die gracefully.  My version of the good doctor’s position is the counter-intuitive idea of “Rush to...

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Is Your Project a Real Project?

Posted by on Sep 9, 2010 in Managing projects, News & commentary | 0 comments

I often hear the phrase “project management” used interchangeably with the word “management.” That’s ok, since everything that we do is a project — right? Well, no.  A great deal of the work that we do isn’t organized into projects, even if it could be.  And that’s a problem, since the project form of work confers a number of important benefits on the organizations that do them and the people who participate in them. Projects are a powerful tool for selecting work, motivating staff, aligning technology with business, and building client...

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