Introduction Project Mngmt.

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INTRODUCTION TO PROJECT MANAGEMENT PRINCIPLES

Office of Learning Technologies Human Resources Development Canada (HRDC) 2003

Project Management
With the excitement and sense of urgency and momentum of a new project, the natural tendency is to dive right in. Your enthusiasm and imagination will be essential to meeting project objectives, but they are not enough alone. Successful projects require effective management. In the application process for OLT funding, you have already done much of the groundwork for sound project management and your hard work will pay dividends now. With a relatively small amount of additional planning before you begin your pilot project, you can help ensure a successful outcome. The purpose of this learning module is to introduce you to the rudiments of project management. The module is divided into subsections which introduce some basic terminology of project management, describe the characteristics of successful projects and provide practical advice on creating a simple yet useable project management plan for your community learning pilot project. We hope you will find it useful.

Introduction to the Rudiments of Project Management

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What is a Project? According to the Project Management Institute (PMI), a project is any work that happens only once, has a clear beginning and end, and is intended to create a unique product or knowledge. It may involve only one person, or thousands. It may last several days, or many years. It may be undertaken by a single organization, or by an alliance of several stakeholders. A project may be as simple as organizing a one-day event or as complex as constructing a dam on a river. What is Project Management? Project management is the application of knowledge, skills, tools and techniques to project activities in order to meet or exceed stakeholder needs and expectations of a project. The project manager, sometimes referred to as the project co-ordinator or leader, manages the details of the project on a day-to-day basis. This is an ongoing challenge that requires an understanding of the broader contextual environment of the project and the ability to balance conflicting demands between: • • • • Available resources and expectations; Differing stakeholder priorities; Identified needs and project scope; Quality and quantity.

Fortunately, a wide variety of project management tools and techniques have been developed for this purpose. The following pages outline a few techniques that together with your creativity and hard work - will provide the foundation for a successful learning initiative.

Introduction to the Rudiments of Project Management

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Characteristics of Successful Projects In the funding application process, you clearly defined the objectives of your project, sought partnerships with organizations with similar objectives and developed a detailed action plan for your project. In doing so, you laid the foundations for success. Consider the following traits that characterise successful projects:

1. Clear objectives - The most successful projects have clearly defined objectives from the outset. 2. A good project plan - A carefully thought-out plan serves two purposes. First, it allows everyone involved to understand and perform their part in the project. It shows who is responsible for what and estimates how much money, people, equipment and time will be required to complete the project. Second, it serves as a monitoring tool, allowing you to take early action if things go wrong. 3. Communication, communication, communication - Your project is a collaborative effort between all of the individuals and organizations involved. You all need to work together to maintain effective and continual communication between the parties. 4. A controlled scope - Numerous issues will come up throughout your project, and not all of them will contribute to your overall objectives. It is important to stay focused on your priorities, with little...
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