Former U.S. president Bill Clinton sent out a powerful message: Project managers will play a significant role in taking on the toughest global challenges.
I am extremely pleased by the confidence that Board has expressed in me to take PMI-GLC to next level of volunteer and stakeholder engagement, trusting me with opportunity to formulate and lead operational vision, strategy and direction while working on to provide higher membership.
Last night at Skyline Club in the board meeting, I was elected president for 2012 term by Board of Directors of Great Lakes Chapter of Project Management Institute (PMI – GLC), one of the largest project management member association in Michigan. I will serve as President Elect for 2011. I have been involved with the chapter earlier as Direct of Webservices and then as Vice President of Communications.
I look forward to enhancing our strategic relationships with organization and businesses leaders to highlight the importance and benefits of Project Management and role PMI-GLC plays in the region. I hope to engage more stakeholders to broaden our network of practitioners, while continuing to support a passionate and dedicated volunteer community.
I would encourage all professionals to get involved in their community or professional organizations, it benefits both, the volunteer and the community/organization. And, if you are a professional living/working in Michigan or Metro Detroit area, please get in touch with PMI-GLC at www.pmiglc.org. Let find out how can we make project and program management work for your community, organization or for you.
Who is a stakeholder? Simply anyone with a stake in the project either direct or indirect.
PMBOK says that stakeholders for a project are persons or organizations –
- who are actively involved;
- whose interests may be positively or negatively affected by the performance or completion of it.
Mitchell, Agle and Wood (1997-99) have come up with stakeholder analysis model, that can help a project manager in early phase of planning process to identify stakeholder and classify according to three major attributes –
- Power – to influence the organization or project deliverables (coercive, financial or material, brand or image);
- Legitimacy – of the relationship & actions in terms of desirability, properness or appropriateness;
- Urgency – of the requirements in terms of criticality & time sensitivity for the stakeholder.
Based on the combination of these attributes, priority is assigned to the stakeholder.
|7 – Definitive
Power, Legitimacy & Urgency
|4 – Dominant
Power & Legitimacy
|5 – Dangerous
Power & Urgency
|6 – Dependent
Legitimacy & Urgency
|1 – Dormant
|2 – Discretionary
|3 – Demanding
- These three attributes can be gained or lost during the time period of the project, so pay attention when it happens.
- Level 1 (Low Priority) stakeholders can increase their salience by coalition building, politics, or media influence.
- Power alone is insufficient to classify a stakeholder high priority; but some times it does, for example – CEO’s favorite project.
- Stakeholder analysis requires careful planning, standard guidelines for selection of stakeholders, resourceful team members who have background information, and standard set of questions that feed into the worksheet.
More resouces on stakeholder analysis are at –
PMBOK Guide- 4th edition, PMI. 2008
Schmeer, Kammi. 1999. Guidelines for Conducting a Stakeholder Analysis. November 1999
People with diverse professional experiences and background have totally unique perspective on any issue. When a new team is assembled for any project, its vital for the success of that project that all team member are aware of the ground-rules for the project; similar to any sport. You may have to read it to team and give a copy for reference.
Here is an example list that I have used for a project to keep team aligned. Such ground-rules certainly eliminate unnecessary confusion and your business customer and team members like it defined beforehand. Make sure, you also follow it and implement it.
- Project manager is the primary contact for any project related communication.
- All team members maintain their contact info on the team contact list with contact preference.
- All members attend required meetings and conference calls; if unable to attend, meeting organizer to be notified. If key contributor is unable to attend, request to reschedule the meeting.
- Any planned day off or vacation must be communicated in advance to project manager so that project plan can be updated and impact to work, if any, can be analyzed.
- All project team members have access to project plan and project logs (in a standard document format) and are aware of the assigned tasks and due dates.
- All team members are to be consulted about the reasonableness of the plan prior to management approval.
- All team members are required to validate their assignments and time allocated prior to the plan is baselined.
- All project team members have the responsibility to proactively notify the project manager about tasks, duration or dependencies they believe are missing (or any other needed changes to the plan) and confront issues directly and promptly.
- Project team members have the responsibility to notify any potential difficulties in meeting the schedule for any assigned tasks as soon as it is known by the team member.
- Each project team member is responsible for ensuring anticipated workload conflicts with other assignments are brought to the attention of the project manager. Team members should ask for help if feeling “stuck” or falling behind the schedule instead of waiting for miracle.
- All team members are responsible to own, follow-up and provide updates on the assigned task (including but not limited to any identified risks, issues, changes, approvals, clarification from customer). If any delay is observed, escalate to project manager.
- All meeting minutes, key decisions, assumptions and business rules must be documented and all action items must be followed up and assigned to a resource with expected completion date. These items are usually mentioned in casual conversation.
- All project team members understand the scope of work. Any work performed must be in the project plan and is in the project scope. Anything that is absolutely needed but not part of the project plan, must be brought into project manager’s attention.
- All project team members confront issues directly and promptly.
- Only project manager submits all final deliverables to business customer for sign-off or approval.
What are other key things that you have found useful and we can add to this list?
Thank you for your visit and have a great day!
Your boss approaches you and tells that workplan is very good but customer wants to know how can we deliver the project sooner than promised? Now you have to come up with a new workplan or make some adjustments based on new findings. You put your thoughts together and go on to make changes/update and deliver the final document with required changes.
And then your boss asks, why this task is due this particular day and why are we taking this long to complete, etc., etc…
You might have answers for most of the questions your boss has asked but it is of prime importance that you document all the assumptions you made while planning, does not matter how small or evident those assumptions are.
I would capture following –
- why are you making these changes or what is the objective and if these objectives are aligned with customer expectations;
- what are high-level or global assumptions for the plan being put in place (standardized assumptions);
- why making change to time/scope/cost;
- what are risks that can derail the work;
- what are the opportunities that you are counting on;
- who are the critical resources you have based your work on;
- what exceptions from standard process did you make;
- what compromises are built into the plan;
- what is the impact on existing process (if any);
- for budget tail of it : dollars spent per month; and
- what are the key milestones.
I hope these are the basic questions that we should be able to answer from a Project Management perspective when talking about assumptions. Let me know what your thoughts are and what else could be added to the list?
Thanks for reading it, appreaciate your feedback.
When I checked my inbox this morning, I found an official email from PMIGLC election committee congratulating me that I have been elected as Vice President – Communications for the 2009-2010 term.
Some of you might know that I volunteer at Great Lakes Chapter of PMI (Project Management Institute) in Detroit. I started volunteering as ‘Director of Webservices’ almost over 2 years ago.
It is very unique and enriching experience when you are leading a team of volunteers for an organization that is non-profit; and I hope I will be learning much more next year when my term begins as Vice President.
I am delighted that I will have the opportunity to work with highly accomplished professionals at the board-of-directors and to contribute to the project management community.