Over the last decade I have been running a series of workshops and seminars called “PRINCE2 Project Management Training & Planning: Concepts from the Business World” These are aimed at individuals who are interested in the management and planning of projects, as well as individuals who have been successfully managing projects in the past, and who are interested in developing, or having their company manage, a project. I will cover some of the same topics in this article as I cover in my other articles, however I will also cover a few new concepts now that I consider more pertinent to the information age.
The workshop will be held in April, 2008 at the National Marine Services camouflage camp in Quantico, Virginia; it will be attended by over 50 people from the US Navy, US Air Force, and various governmental contractors.
First, I will cover the history of the PMI, and give a brief history of it’s branches as well. The PMI was formed in 1974, and began offering the function of certifying project managers in 1976. Some jobs, the PMI will not certify, they consider jobs to be uneligable, and their opinion on certification is that any PM is an unproven manager. FACT: If your company uses a PM, they are using someone’s opinion that he or she has been certified.
I then cover two other points important to a project manager, and also the importance of planning in planning to manage. The first is the importance of planning in project management, and the second is what it will bring you in the end.
We will begin with planning by first discussing what planning is and why it is so important to manage projects. I will only briefly delve into the why part at this point, but I thought it was important to cover it as it pertains to more of the subjects discussed in this article. Organizational planning is the process of developing a plan that will provide the organization a ready road map for success for future endeavors. For example, if your organization has a product ready for launch, it will save time and money if it has a ready plan to sell to the market.
I then cover the importance of planning to bring you to a successful end. Your organization may have a product, but the product may not be fully developed, it may require further product development, and it may not have brand recognition (if it is new to your industry). To cover all of that, you must have a plan. Another example is when you launch a product, and you have the expectation that 20% of the market should be interested right way.
If you don’t have a plan to reach that market share you will severely decrease your end market share. The same is true if you have a product and plan to launch it. You will have customers that are ready to purchase when you do, and you already have a plan for how to do that, however you may not be able to cater all of them at one time. If you are planning to convince all of them one at a time, you either go out of business or sell a product that also markets to all of those customers starting at one time. Both of these will greatly decrease benefit is your company.
The last part covers the importance of planning in project management. Creating a plan for many projects will only help if you work your plan.
If your company has an un-achievable product, order, or a service without any way of reaching the end result, the project must be brought to fruition, and that only comes from having a plan. A project, and all the planning that goes with it, helps bring a product to its final execution. If you stop now, you will stop the project and it will stop you.