Project Management: New Product Development

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Project Management: New Product Development
Fall, 2012: BS3009

Professor Barbara Flynn

I. Course Description

Many professional assignments are, in fact, projects. Whether you are developing a new product, implementing a new system, planning an event or seeking some other more or less pre-specified outcome, it often can’t be done by simply repeating something that has been done before. Increasingly, the most important jobs encompass both figuring out how to do something and actually doing it. They are the “one-offs’ – projects, in other words – and in a fast-changing world, they are the means by which many vital ends are achieved. Projects carry out the intentions and strategies of organizations

Project management is an often-used management technique for accomplishing specialized missions or work when the normal organizational structure or methods of assignment are not sufficiently responsive, flexible or effective. This course is designed to convey the principles, tools, techniques and methods employed in order to be effective in both managing projects and leading the people responsible for executing the tasks that make up the project.

We focus on project management in the context of new product development. Cases and articles related to new product development will be used to illustrate key principles of project management that are relevant to projects of all types. A simulation will allow you to assume the role of a project manager and test the usefulness of principles learned from the course reading materials and discussions, with the ultimate objective of improving the success rate of projects that are critical to organizations. You will also learn how to set up and analyze a project using Microsoft Project.

This is a technology-enhanced course, employing a combination of face-to-face sessions and virtual modules. The face-to-face sessions will focus on discussion of key project management insights through case discussion, while the virtual modules will focus on mastery of Microsoft Project (MSP). Please see the course schedule at the back of this syllabus for a detailed list of the face-to-face sessions and virtual modules. You may complete the virtual modules at your convenience, following the schedule listed in the schedule and on the Oncourse Calendar.

Because of the limited number of face-to-face sessions, it is very important that you do not miss any of these sessions; please try to plan your travel schedule to correspond to the dates of the virtual sessions.

Learning Outcomes
* Students will be able to use Microsoft Project to set up a project (Core Goal #1) * Students will be able to use Microsoft Project to analyze the tradeoffs between schedule, scope and budget (Core Goal #1) * Given a particular operating scenario, students will be able to discuss key project management principles and make appropriate recommendations (Core Goal #5) * Students will be able to describe the impact of the tradeoffs between scope, schedule and budget on team morale and performance (Core Goal #3)

Required Course Materials
* Microsoft Project 2010 - Software
You can download a 90-day free trial from You may also have Project 2010 available at work or as part of your Office suite. Project 2010 is quite different from Project 2007, so please make sure that you have Project 2010. Either the standard or professional version is fine. * Microsoft Project 2010: Official Academic Course - Book (Wiley, 2012, ISBN 978-0-470-63888-0). This book contains the lessons for the virtual sessions. * Project Management: NPD Coursepack - Coursepack

This coursepack contains the cases, articles and simulation for the course. You may purchase it from Harvard Business School Press, in either electronic (the less expensive option) or hard copy format. To access this...
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