Project Governance is central to the success and accountability of your projects. So, what is Project Governance?
Dr Mike Clayton is founder of OnlinePMCourses.com.
Here, he answers this question, in under 5 minutes.
The Stage Gate Process gets too little love from Project Managers. Yet it has the potential to transform your project management, deliver more successful projects, and make you a better project manager.
A Stage Gate is also known by many other names:
In a Stage Gate process, you break your project into stages, or phases. Each stage ends with a gate. And the metaphor is simple: you don’t complete the stage and cross to the next one, until you pass through the gate. So, at each stage gate, the project’s decision-makers review your project against a set of criteria.
Using the information you make available, they decide whether to:
In this article, we look at why a stage gate process will enhance your project management, and how to make it work.
Call them your sponsor, your boss, or your client if you like. But one thing we all know as a Project Manager is this. Our job is to do what our Project Sponsor wants.
But here’s the question… Do you know what your Project Sponsor wants? If you don’t, you’d better find out quickly.
And that’s what this article is all about.
Some will argue that it isn’t. It is to do what your employer needs, to serve your stakeholders, or to meet the expectations of the organization that’s paying the bills. These are all true.
But this article is going to make one giant assumption: that your sponsor’s job is to represent these faithfully. In another article, we’ll examine the vexed question of what to do if your sponsor goes rogue. For now, we’ll assume that serving our sponsor, and delivering what they want, is at the heart of your role.
There’s one distinctive sign that your project is going well. A stakeholder approaches you in the corridor. ‘We’re very pleased with how your project is going…’ they say. ‘The only thing is… we’ve changed out minds.’ Oh no. This is a job for Project Change Control.
Even on the most traditional of projects, you will need to adapt to changes. They may be driven by technology, commercial opportunities, regulatory changes or a dozen more reasons. Whatever it is, you need to be flexible. And the longer your project, the bigger the need. So it pays to set up a change control process as part of your project set up. This usually happens during the planning stage, and it will serve you well, during your delivery stage.
In this giant guide, we give you everything you need to know to start setting up a robust change control process for your project.
Project Managers have many responsibilities. And one of the most difficult is Project Estimation: to predict what will happen in the future. Because projects are fraught with uncertainty.
And Project Sponsors dislike uncertainty. So they expect Project Managers to reduce it. So, they want you to manage project risks and estimate uncertain, future outcomes like:
In an earlier article, we gave you eight approaches for how to engage your project sponsor. But the commonest challenge is ‘what if I have a difficult project sponsor?’ So in this article, we’ll look at seven flavours of difficult project sponsor, and tactics for handling them.
Too often, Project Governance is seen as ‘worthy but dull’.
Project Managers can easily believe it is nothing but an annoying intrusion into their autonomy. Senior managers find it a distraction. In addition, when they need to do it, these top people usually believe it is straight forward; they don’t need anyone to tell them how to do it.
Yet Project Governance is a critical component of your project control. It protects the organization, the project, and its people alike. It provides accountability, strategic focus, and sound decision-making. Without good Project Governance, you and your project are at grave risk.
So it’s time to understand what Project Governance can do for you. And how to kick start it on your project.
The PMI Pulse of the Profession 2017 annual review is called ‘Success Rates Rise’. From the title, we already know it contains good news.
This year, the focus of the PMI’s analysis is on strategic initiatives. But project managers at all levels need to be aware of the major trends and the conclusions the PMI draws. So, in this article, we extract the meat. And we add our own OnlinePMCourses comment to some of the PMI’s own conclusions.
A Project Business Case sets out why you should start your project. It gives an
‘analysis of the benefits and costs of making a change to the way things are done’.
Your Project Business Case is therefore a tool for senior people to make an informed decision. It is a vital part of your project governance.
A project without a Project Sponsor is like a restaurant without a proprietor. When everything runs smoothly, no-one notices the absence. But when you need a big decision, somebody needs to make it.
Project Sponsorship is not just about accountability. It’s about getting the direction and oversight of your project right. It is a means of projecting the organization from some of the major risks from your project.
But what if your Project Sponsor doesn’t want to get fully involved?