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Managing Projects: The Role of the PM

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1 Managing Projects: The Role of the PM
Chapter 3 Managing Projects: The Role of the PM

2 Project Management and the Project Manager
The best way to explain the unique role of the PM is to contrast it with that of a functional managers. The PM starts with being a specialist but gradually it metamorphose from technical caterpillar into a generalist butterfly. The PM is required to have an ability to put many pieces of a task together to form a coherent whole The functional manager uses the analytic approach and the PM uses the systems approach. Pm should be both a facilitator but a generalist also and have a reasonably high level of technical competence in the science of the project.

3 Cont.. There are 3 major questions that PM faces
What needs to be done. When it must be done. And how are the resources required to do the job to be obtained. Pm is responsible for the project, and depending on how the project is organized, the functional managers will make some of the fundamental and the critical project decisions. The PM is responsible for organizing, staffing, budgeting, directing, planning and controlling the project. In other words, the PM manages it, but the functional mangers may affect the choice of technology to be used by the project and the specific individuals who will do the work.

4 Project Responsibilities
The PM’s responsibility are broad and fall primarily into 3 separate areas: Responsibility to the parent organization, responsibility to the Project and the client, and responsibility to the members of the project team. The PM MUST NEVER ALLOW SENIOR MANAGEMENT TO BE SURPRISED. The PM’s responsibility to the project and the client is met by ensuring that the integrity of the project is preserved in spite of the conflicting demands made by the many parties who have legitimate interest in the project. The PM’s responsibilities to the members of the project team are dictated by the finite nature of the project itself and the specialized nature of the team. PM must be concerned with the future of the people who serve on the team.

5 Special Demands on the PM
A number of demands are unique to the managements of projects and the success of the PM depends to a large extent on how capably they are handled. Acquiring adequate resources Acquiring and motivating personnel Dealing with obstacles Making projects goals trade-offs Failure and the risk and fear of failure Breadth of communication negotiation

6 Acquiring adequate Resources
The resources budgeted for a project are frequently insufficient to the task. Many details of resources purchase and usage are deferred until the project manager knows specifically what resources will be required and when. The good PM knows there are resources trade-offs that need to be taken into consideration. The problems of time and budget are aggravated in the presence of a phenomenon that has been long suspect but proved in mid-1980s. Resources acquisition by PM.

7 Acquiring & Motivating Personnel
A major problem for the Pm is the fact that most of the people needed for a project are borrowed. PM’s quest for quality people Motivation problem Skills for selection process High-quality skills Political sensitivity Strong problem orientation Strong goal orientation High self-esteem

8 Dealing with Obstacles
One characteristics of any project is its uniqueness, and this characteristics means that the PM will have to face and overcome a series of crises. From the beginning of the project till the termination, crisis appears without warning. The Pm learns by experience, the wise PM learns from the experiences of the others. Managing a project is just like managing a business. At the project completion, obstacles tend to be clustered around 2 issues: 1st, last – minute schedule and technical changes, and second a series of problems that have as their source the uncertainty surrounding what happens to members of the project team when the project is completed.

9 Making project goal Trade-offs
The PM must make trade-offs between the project goals of cost, time, and performance and, of course, the ancillary goals. The PM must also make trade-offs between project progress and process. i.e. between the technical and managerial functions. The first set of trade-offs is required by the need to preserve some balance between the projects time, cost and performance goals. During the design or formation stage of the PLC, there is no significant difference in the importance PM place on the 3 goals. It appears that the logic of this findings is based on the assumption that the project should be designed to meet all the client-set goals. If compromises must be made, each of the objectives is vulnerable.

10 Cont… Schedule is the dominant goals during stage, being significantly more important than performance, which is in turn significantly more important than cost. Scheduling and performance are approximately tied for primacy during the main stage of the PLC when both are significantly more important than cost, though the importance of cost increases somewhat between the buildup and main stages. During the final stage, phase-out, performance is significantly more important than scheduling, which is significantly more than cost. The second set of trade-offs concerns sacrificing smoothness of running the project team for technical progress. The PM also has responsibility for the other types of trade-offs. If the PM directs more than one project, he or she must make trade-offs b/w the several projects.

11 Cont… The PM’s enthusiasm about the project-a prime requirement for successful project management-can easily lead him or her to: Overstate the benefits of the project Understate the probable costs of project completion. ignore technical difficulties in achieving the required level of performance. Make trade-offs decisions that are clearly biased in favor of the project and antithetical to the goals of the parent organization.

12 Failure & the risk & fear of failure
It is difficult to distinguish b/w project failure, partial failure and success. What appears to be a failure at one point in the life of the project may look like success at another. If we divide all projects into 2 general categories according to the degree to which the project is understood, we find some interesting differences in the nature and timing of perceived difficulties in carrying out a project. These perceptions have a considerable effect on the PM. That I TYPE 1 TYPE 2

13 Type 1 Assume that type 1 projects are generally well-developed, routine construction projects. Type 2 projects are at the opposite pole; they are not well understood, and there may be considerable uncertainty about specifically what should be done. When type 1 project begun, they appear simple. The later in the life cycle of the project thee problem appear, the more difficult it I to keep the project on it time an cot schedule. Contingencies allowance for the time an cot to overcome such problem are often build into the budget an schedule for type 1 project.

14 Type 2 Type 2 project exhibit a different et of problem. There are many difficulties early in the life of the project, mot of which are so-called planning problem. By an large, the problem result from a failure to define the mission carefully and, at times, from a failure to get the client's acceptance on the project mission. Failure to define the mission leas to subsequent problems. These failures often appear to result from the inability to solve the project’s technical problems. In fact they result from a failure to define project requirements an specification well enough to deal with the technical glitches that always occur.

15 Breadth of Communication
Most of the PM’s is spent communicating with the many groups interested in the project. Running a project requires constant selling, reselling, and explaining the project to outsiders, top management, functional departments, clients, and a numbers of others parties – at- interest to the project, as well as to members of the project team itself. The PM is the project’s liaison with the outside, but the managers must also be available for problem solving in the lab, for crisis in the field, for threatening or cajoling the subcontractors, an for reducing interpersonal conflict between project team members.

16 Certain fundamental issues that the managers must understand an deal with as follows:
The PM’s must know why the project exists; that is, the PM must fully understand the project’s intent. The PM must have a clear definition of how success or failure is to be determined. Any PM with extensive experience has manage projects that failed. It is critical to have the support of top management. The PM should build an maintain a solid information network. It is critical to know what is happening both inside an outside the project. The PM must be flexible in as many people an about as many activities as possible throughout the entire life of the project.

17 Negotiation In order to meet the desires of the job of the project manager- acquiring adequate resources, acquiring and motivating personnel, dealing with obstacles , making project goal trade-offs, handling failure and the fear of failure, and maintaining the appropriate patterns of communication- The project manager must be a highly skilled negotiator.

18 Selecting the Project Manager
Selection of the project manger is one of the two or three most important decisions concerning the project. The following is a list of some of the most popular attributes, skills , and qualities that have been sought when selecting project manager: A strong technical background A hard-nosed manager A mature individual Someone who is currently available A person who can keep the project team happy One who has worked in several departments A person who can walk on( or parts) the waters.

19 The perceptions required for the PM
It is not sufficient for the PM simply to possess these skills; they must also be perceived by others. The fact and the perception are equally important. Credibility : the PM needs 2 kinds of credibility. 1st is Technical credibility: the PM must be perceived by the client, senior executes, the functional departments, and the project team as possessing sufficient technical knowledge to direct the project. A PM with reasonable technical competence seems to be associated with project success and is seen by project team members to be a positive leadership quality

20 Technical credibility
The PM does not need to have a high level of expertise, know more than any actual team member, or be able to stand toe-to-toe and intellectually slug it out with experts in the various functional areas.

21 Administrative credibility
The PM has several key administrative responsibilities that must be performed with apparently effortless ease. One of these responsibilities is towards the client and the senior mgt. Responsibility towards the project team Responsibility towards the interest of all the parties Responsibility of the trade-offs.

22 Sensitivity The PM must keep project team members “cool” . This is not easy. As with any group of humans, rivalries, jealousies, friendships, and hospitalities are sure to exist . The PM needs a sensitive set of technical sensors. it is common, unfortunately , for otherwise competent and honest team members to try to hide their failures. Individuals who cannot work under stress would be well advised to avoid project organization.

23 Leadership and management styles
Leadership has been defined as ‘ interpersonal influence, exercised in situations and directed through the communication process, towards the attainment of a specified goals or goals. PM must have other skills as enthusiasm, optimism, energy, tenacity, courage, and personal maturity.

24 Ability to handle stress
Life in Projects is hectic like a pressure cooker. Therefore PM must deal with all the stress that comes his way Following are the types of stress in a project life. PM’s never develop a reasonably consistent set of procedures and techniques with which to manage their work. “Too much on the plate” Some have a high need to achieve that is constantly frustrating The parent organization is in throes of major change.

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