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Guide to project management

Foundations of Project Management

  • A project is unique endavour, and usually includes a set of unique deliverables.
  • A temporary pursuit: it has a defined begining and end
  • A series of tasks

What project managers do?

Shepherd projects from start to finish and serve as guides for thier team, using their impeccable organizational and interpersonal skills every step of the way

  • Planning and organizing
  • Managing tasks
  • Budgeting
  • Controlling costs and other factors

How they Deliver value ?

  • Delegation ( Assigning tasks to the best fit )
  • Prioritization ( Prioritizing tasks that is required for project completion)
  • Effective communication

Skills for successful project management

  • Enabling decision making
  • Communicating and escalating
  • Flexibility
  • Strong organizational skills


  • Construction Project Manager
  • IT Project Manager
  • Engineering Project Manager
  • Operations Manger
  • Program Manager
  • Project Assistant
  • Project Coordinator
  • Operations Manager

Project life cycle

Initiate the project

In this phase, ask questions to help set the foundation for the project, such as:

  • Who are the stakeholders?
  • What are the client’s or customer’s goals?
  • What is the purpose and mission of the project?
  • What are the measurable objectives for the team?
  • What is the project trying to improve?
  • When does this project need to be completed?
  • What skills and resources will the project require?
  • What will the project cost? What are the benefits?

Make a Plan

  • Create a budget
  • Set the schedule
  • Establish your team
  • Determine roles and responsibilities
  • Plan for risk and change
  • Establish communications
  • Create a detailed project plan. What are the major milestones? What tasks or deliverables make up each milestone?
  • Build out the schedule so you can properly manage the resources, budget, materials, and timeline. Here, you will create an itemized budget.

Execute the project

In this phase, put all of your hard work from the first two phases into action.

  • Monitor your project team as they complete project tasks.
  • Break down any barriers that would slow or stop the team from completing tasks.
  • Help keep the team aware of schedule and deliverable expectations.
  • Address weaknesses in your process or examine places where your team may need additional training to meet the project’s goals.
  • Adapt to changes in the project as they arise.
  • Manage the progress
  • Communicate
  • Make adjustments

Close the project

  • Ensure all tasks have been completed
  • Confirm acceptance of the project outcome
  • Reflect on lessons learned (retrospective)
  • Communicate results with stakeholders
  • Celebrate completing the project
  • Formally move on from the project

Project management methodologies

Waterfall is a traditional methodology in which tasks and phases are completed in a linear, sequential manner, and each stage of the project must be completed before the next begins. The project manager is responsible for prioritizing and assigning tasks to team members. In Waterfall, the criteria used to measure quality is clearly defined at the beginning of the project.

Agile involves short phases of collaborative, iterative work with frequent testing and regularly-implemented improvements. Some phases and tasks happen at the same time as others. In Agile projects, teams share responsibility for managing their own work. Scrum and Kanban are examples of Agile frameworks, which are specific development approaches based on the Agile philosophy.

Scrum is an Agile framework that focuses on developing, delivering, and sustaining complex projects and products through collaboration, accountability, and an iterative process. Work is completed by small, cross-functional teams led by a Scrum Master and is divided into short Sprints with a set list of deliverables.

Kanban is a tool used in both Agile and Lean approaches that provides visual feedback about the status of the work in progress through the use of Kanban boards or charts. With Kanban, project managers use sticky notes or note cards on a physical or digital Kanban board to represent the team’s tasks with categories like “To do,” “In progress,” and “Done.”

Lean uses the 5S quality tool to eliminate eight areas of waste, save money, improve quality, and streamline processes. Lean’s principles state that you can do more with less by addressing dysfunctions that create waste. Lean implements a Kanban scheduling system to manage production.

Six Sigma involves reducing variations by ensuring that quality processes are followed every time. The Six Sigma method follows a process-improvement approach called DMAIC, which stands for define, measure, analyze, improve, and control.

Lean Six Sigma is a combination of Lean and Six Sigma approaches. It is often used in projects that aim to save money, improve quality, and move through processes quickly. Lean Six Sigma is also ideal for solving complex or high-risk problems. The 5S organization framework, the DMAIC process, and the use of Kanban boards are all components of this approach.

A detailed article on which methodologies you should use?

Understanding organizational structure

Classic Structure : Top down approach

Matrix structure: Direct higher-ups and stakeholders from other departments or programs