Project Management Simplified

It’s a cold November night and I have 30 minutes to kill before my partner and I meet for Thai food. I’m already downtown with a laptop and an internet connection, so I’m logging in to Lynda.com to indulge my professional development addiction.

I thought I would blog as I use this platform to gain more formal training in project management. You see, most of what I’ve learned about project management I’ve learned on the job. I certainly have read and applied learnings from productivity and project management books and articles. But I noticed the “Become a Project Coordinator” Learning Path on Lynda. I wonder what I might learn by going through each of the courses. I’ll share what I learn here.

Project Management Simplified Course

The first class is Project Management Simplified with Chris Croft. Here’s how it’s described:

Almost everything you do in the workplace is a project, from the smallest task to the largest endeavor. All of this work can benefit from some simple project-management techniques. In this course, management trainer Chris Croft outlines the twelve steps to managing projects without creating a lot of extra overhead, and shows how to use traditional PM tools—such as Gantt charts and network diagrams—to help you manage your workload.

12-Step Process

In the first chapter, Croft gives an overview of his 12-step process for Project Management:

  1. Define the project
  2. List the tasks
  3. Estimate times and costs for each task
  4. Add up time and cost
  5. Shorten your project plan
  6. Draw a Gantt chart
  7. Calculate resource requirements over time
  8. Assess risks and prepare action plans
  9. Monitor progress
  10. Monitor cost
  11. Reschedule
  12. Review: learn and praise

How does this overview look to you? Are any of Croft’s steps redundant? Any steps missing? Respond in the comments below.

Quiz Results

I took the chapter quiz and demonstrated that I understood the following fairly obvious facts:

  • Failing to define your project is a very common reason for project failure.
  • The following are essential steps in project planning:
    • List your tasks
    • Estimate times and costs for each task
    • Calculate resource requirements over time

 

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