Advanced Project Planning and Control Facilitation


This project management training course teaches students how to successfully facilitate the creation of project charters, work breakdown structures, network diagrams and updated project plans using proven group facilitation techniques. Detailed approaches are modeled by the instructor and then students are provided multiple opportunities to practice the skills presented using structured exercised contained in the course materials. Students receive specific, applicable feedback in each exercise. Due to the highly interactive nature of this class, class size is limited to 15 students.



The course targets students who already have a thorough understanding of basic project management techniques and are interested in learning how to successfully lead teams through the project planning and control process. This course is applicable to project team leaders as well as those who provide project management facilitation services within their organizations (e.g., Project Office personnel).

Course Duration

The course consists of 24 hours of instruction taught in a three-day program, including lecture and hands-on exercises. The course includes exercises on the following topics:

  • Opening Planning Sessions
  • Listing Charter Elements
  • Dealing with Difficult People
  • Building Network Diagrams
  • Putting it all Together

Course Content

Each student is given a notebook to be used during the program to follow the lecture material and to perform individual exercises. In addition to the course material covered, detailed agendas that explain how to set up and conduct each facet of a facilitated project planning and/or control session. The detailed agendas serve as a handy reference tool for future sessions the students will lead.


Participants must have successfully completed the following PMAlliance course: Project Management; Duration-Driven® Planning and Control.

Course Outline

Course Introduction

PMAlliance Project Management Approach Overview

  • The Planning Process
  • The Control Process

Setting the Stage

  • Interviewing Project Sponsors
  • Knowing the Process
  • Preparing the Project Team
  • Preparing Participants
  • Preparing the Room

Opening the Session

  • Preparing for On-Time Starts
  • Delivering the Opening Monologue
  • Creating Stage Presence
  • Importance of Personal Objectives
  • Reviewing the Agenda and Ground Rules

Exercise 1 – Delivering the Opening Monologue

Maintaining Group Focus

  • Explaining Scene Transitions
  • Giving Clear Directions
  • Using the Parking Lot
  • Managing Time
  • Using Break-out Groups

Public Documentation

  • Ten Commandments of Facilitation
  • Recording Input as it is Given
  • Recording Input Clearly
  • Maintaining Pace
  • Ordering Speakers

Exercise 2 – Listing Charter Elements

Collecting Detail Information

  • Varying questions to clarify, challenge, or participate
  • Listing
  • Brainstorming
  • Round-Robin
  • Grouping

Dealing with Difficult People

  • Determining the Source of Difficulty
  • Types of Difficulty
  • Applying Solutions

Exercise 3 – Facilitating a “Difficult” WBS

Building Networking Diagrams

  • Using High Level Activities to Confirm the Approach
  • Task Relationships That Work
  • Successful Post-it Mechanics

Facilitating Control Sessions

Detailed Agenda Review

Exercise 4 – Putting It All Together

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Project Experience

Portfolio Management
Successful portfolio management calls for exceptional data management skills and diligent oversight across multiple efforts.
Demanding, time sensitive, and finely tuned, manufacturing projects require close attention and experienced oversight.
IT Projects
Organizations must be able to successfully execute challenging and highly visible technology projects to maximize revenue.
Power Plants
Power Plants must be able to keep these vital infrastructure assets current, efficient, and economically positive.
High-profile hurdles and expensive risks of failure make these projects critical to manage properly from the very beginning.
Presents complexities at nearly every stage, from allocating resources to controlling schedule variances, or clearing regulatory & safety hurdles.
Ensuring team members are able to move outside the silos of their department or discipline is the key to achieving success.
Product Dev
Design and other early-stage activities must be carefully orchestrated while maintaining visibility on future impacts and resource needs.
Mergers & Acquisitions
Among the riskiest and most strategically important initiatives a company can undertake, and their outcomes can make or break the business.
Finance & Insurance
Technology implementations call for the right level of planning detail and diligent oversight.
An ERP implementation can be among the most disruptive and strategically important initiative an organization can undertake.