Common Problems

Solid Planning is the Answer to the Brexit Uncertainty

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Companies worried about the future should instead turn their focus toward planning. Contingency planning has long been a core skill behind successful project management, and it’s a competency that organizations can turn to as the Brexit process moves forward. After reviewing the firm’s goals and where the changing environment might intersect (or interfere), project managers will be able to lay out several contingent paths that can guide the business through the uncertain years ahead, leaning toward one or another of these potential paths as information about the future becomes more clear.

The Schedule Challenges Behind Manufacturing Projects

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  Scheduling challenges exist in every type of project, but manufacturing efforts bring with them some unique risks and obstacles. Outside influences and unexpected developments can impact timelines in surprising ways, putting the team in a difficult position. Frustration arises when a schedule goes off track, sometimes pushing PMOs to cut corners as they try…

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Resource Management Enables Manpower Visibility

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Project managers essentially have two areas of focus when it comes to manpower support:

Knowing that they have enough of the right resources to execute the amount of work planned, ensuring they aren’t caught short-handed at a critical time.
Understanding when those resources are needed—and when they’re best used—so they don’t have expensive labor resources onsite without anything to do.

If the team isn’t adequately staffed with the right level of labor resources to complete the amount of work being scheduled, the activity durations will ultimately take longer. This often leads to some of the project’s scope being sacrificed toward the end of the project as the team runs out of time leading up to the target completion date.

Managing Projects with Multiple Critical Paths

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Complex projects often have more than one critical path, and in order for the project to reach a successful completion, each of these paths must be carefully managed. Even if the primary path is achieved, a lack of progress on any of the follow-on paths could doom the project to failure in the long run.

Teams that execute these challenging projects need to be mindful of what it takes to manage multiple layers of requirements and actions. A strong awareness of all the paths that make up a project is critical if the PMO wants to ensure that nothing falls behind schedule or drops off the radar.

If your center of excellence is facing a can’t-fail project with multiple paths, it’s important to understand the risks that exists and where opportunities for success can be found.

Power Plant Projects Bring Unique Communication Challenges

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Strong communication skills are a must for any project manager. But when it comes to planning and executing projects in the highly demanding power plant environment, the ability to craft, plan for, and oversee communication efforts moves to the top of the priority ladder. Tackling these unique challenges requires experience and expertise.

Partnering with an External Consultancy: Facts & Fears

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Executive groups and internal project team members are often unsure what it means to partner with an outside project management firm. There may be concerns about job stability for PMO staff or the potential for damage to the team’s reputation. Some people worry about the logistics of working with an external expert and how it might contribute to a difficult environment, where workloads, time pressures, and stress levels are already high.

These are reasonable concerns but they’re typically based on the unknown. They don’t reflect the reality of partnering with an experienced outside consultancy. We’ve compiled some of the most common fears we hear from potential clients and balanced them against the facts of how a relationship with an external expert functions in the real world.

If your organization is considering an external consultancy but fear is holding you back, see how a partnership with an outside project management expert really works.

Project Management: Stress Vs. Panic

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Several strategies can be deployed to help PMOs avoid lapsing into panic when the pressure mounts, whether it’s because of an emergent problem or because there simply seems to be too much to do. Knowing where to draw the line is key when balancing stress levels.

Protect Your Brand with Project Management

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Careful management of company funds, close alignment with organizational goals, transparency throughout every communication, and the delivery of a high-quality product are all factors behind your brand’s reputation. Is your project management approach helping to preserve and promote that image?

Avoiding Project Errors

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Anyone leading a busy life is bound to make a mistake now and then. Project teams catch most glitches early and fix them before any real damage is done. However, there are times when errors can cause those in the center of excellence serious trouble, particularly if mistakes are able to fester and snowball. Errors…

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Why is It So Difficult to Rescue Troubled Projects?

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Sometimes a project goes off the rails—it’s well over budget and eating through the last of its funding, the schedule is slipping and critical milestones haven’t been met, or the parameters of the project have ballooned out of control and the team is no longer sure which goals they’re supposed to be pursuing. Support from…

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