We are all project managers.  Mastering this level is a cornerstone to being productive.

If we follow the roles mind map to the next level, we find many projects; often between 50 and 100.  Some are formal, others are informal.  Some are small and simple, others are huge and involve large numbers of collaborators and stakeholders.

Whether you use Agile, Waterfall, Lean, Prince, Kanban, Scrum, Scrumban or one of the many other continually evolving models, some key basic principles can optimise our project management.

For this exercise, think of a major project you are working on.  It can be personal or work-related.  Choose something ‘meaty’ enough to make this a useful example.

If you can’t think of one, here are samples that people have mentioned on the programme; they might trigger an idea with you:

Personal: Moving house, house renovations, re-designing the garden, going on holiday, getting married, getting divorced, dealing with cancer, 50th wedding anniversary …

Work: organising an event, office move, recruiting a new member of staff, product launch, research grant, implementing a policy or IT system …

Have you thought of one?  Jot it down, connect it to its key role and include any due date.  Before moving on, consider the outcome.  What will make it a success?  When you get to the end of the project what will have made it worthwhile.  

Now move on to the final layer in the framework, Tasks.

Pro Tip
Procrastination can be a real challenge especially for complicated projects.

A key factor may be the stated outcome simply doesn't motivate us to do the tasks. If so, you may need to dig deeper and clarify some part of the outcome that resonates at a personal level.

As an aside, if this is a team project, the entire group should have their personal version of the success factor. It's not always the same for everyone in the team, although hopefully there will be a good degree of overlap. Learn why we do it and how to overcome it.

Learn more about procrastination

A goal without a plan is just a wish.

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