Posted by: Jeff Timmins | October 20, 2010

Elements of RM – Project Management Part 1

The exciting thing about Release Management (RM) that there are a number of parts or elements or the work.  Thus to be effective in RM you need to be a semi-expert on multiple topics.

Project Management is a core skill that needs to be understood and refined to be effected.  (“Claimer” – I’m not a PMP or expert Project Manager but I’ve lead my share of successful projects.)

Below is the first entry on Project Management:

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Make decisions – Jim Vaughan presents a good post at advice.cio.com about Your Success as a Project Manager Lies in your Willingness to Make Decisions that has a number of good points.  The first point is don’t be slow to make an actual moving forward decision.  He also points out the benefit on splitting decisions into those you have authority to make and those to be made by others (especially about documenting the decisions and associated costs + the communication piece).  He ends with really good advice about how to gain more authority by continually testing what is the correct decision (my personal method when it doubt is to present the issue to a manager saying “this is what I would do and I think this is inline with my authority – what do you think”).

Presenting information – in AtTask’s blog about all things Project Management, Ty Kiisel writes about Presenting to Project Stakeholders: 10 Tips to Effective Communication.  In the blog he talks about a list of tips for presenting to stakeholders that he admits has been around for awhile but still worth rehashing (I’m with Ty – beg & borrow as long as it is legal!).  To me this is a great list to keep in mind when leading the weekly “Launch Meeting” as the participants want only the important information, presented in a straight forward method and in a way that will not take all day.  If you meet weekly and processes are well defined, this meeting of around 12 people shouldn’t take more than 15 minutes.

Project Management Basics – Duncan Haughey details the Best Practices for PM work in The Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) on http://www.projectsmart.co.uk.  This includes the 5 basic process groups and 9 knowledge areas that are part of most projects.

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