Manage It! : Your Guide to Modern, Pragmatic Project Management

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2007-06-15
  • Publisher: Oreilly & Associates Inc
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This book is a reality-based guide for modern projects. You'll learn how to recognise your project's potholes and ruts, and determine the best way to fix problemswithout causing more problems. Your project can't fail. That's a lot of pressure on you, and yet you don't want to buy into any one specific process, methodology, or lifecycle. Your project is different. It doesn't fit into those neat descriptions. Successful Project Management will show you how to beg, borrow, and steal from the best methodologies to fit your particular project. It will help you find what works best for you and not for some mythological project that doesn't even exist. Before you know it, your project will be on track and headed to a successful conclusion. New project managers won't fall into the trap of thinking that if they manage the Gantt, they can succeed. More seasoned project managers will find several new ways of looking at project problems they've encountered in the past.

Table of Contents

Forewordp. xv
Prefacep. xvii
Starting a Projectp. 1
Define Projects and Project Managersp. 1
Manage Your Drivers, Constraints, and Floatsp. 3
Discuss Your Project Constraints with Your Client or Sponsorp. 6
Decide on a Driver for Your Projectp. 7
Manage Sponsors Who Want to Overconstrain Your Projectp. 9
Write a Project Charter to Share These Decisionsp. 11
Know What Quality Means for Your Projectp. 14
Planning the Projectp. 17
Start the Wheels Turningp. 17
Plan Just Enough to Startp. 18
Develop a Project Plan Templatep. 19
Define Release Criteriap. 26
Use Release Criteriap. 31
Using Life Cycles to Design Your Projectp. 35
Understanding Project Life Cyclesp. 35
Overview of Life Cyclesp. 36
Seeing Feedback in the Projectp. 40
Larger Projects Might Have Multiple Combinations of Life Cyclesp. 41
Managing Architectural Riskp. 45
Paddling Your Way Out of a Waterfallp. 47
My Favorite Life Cyclesp. 48
Scheduling the Projectp. 49
Pragmatic Approaches to Project Schedulingp. 49
Select from These Scheduling Techniquesp. 51
Start Scheduling with a Low-Tech Toolp. 54
Estimating the Workp. 63
Pragmatic Approaches to Project Estimationp. 63
Milestones Define Your Project's Chunksp. 76
How Little Can You Do?p. 78
Estimating with Multitaskingp. 78
Scheduling People to Multitask by Designp. 79
Using Rolling-Wave Schedulingp. 80
Deciding on an Iteration Durationp. 81
Estimating Using Inch-Pebbles Wherever Possiblep. 83
Recognizing and Avoiding Schedule Gamesp. 87
Bring Me a Rockp. 87
Hope Is Our Most Important Strategyp. 90
Queen of Denialp. 92
Sweep Under the Rugp. 95
Happy Datep. 97
Pants on Firep. 99
Split Focusp. 101
Schedule Equals Commitmentp. 103
We'll Know Where We Are When We Get Therep. 105
The Schedule Tool Is Always Rightp. 107
We Gotta Have It; We're Toast Without Itp. 110
We Can't Say Nop. 112
Schedule Chickenp. 114
90% Donep. 115
We'll Go Faster Nowp. 117
Schedule Trancep. 119
Creating a Great Project Teamp. 121
Recruit the People You Needp. 121
Help the Team Jellp. 123
Make Your Organization Work for Youp. 126
Know How Large a Team You Needp. 129
Know When to Add More Peoplep. 131
Become a Great Project Managerp. 131
Know When It's Time to Leavep. 134
Steering the Projectp. 143
Steer the Project with Rhythmp. 143
Conduct Interim Retrospectivesp. 144
Rank the Requirementsp. 145
Timebox Requirements Workp. 148
Timebox Iterations to Four or Fewer Weeksp. 151
Use Rolling-Wave Planning and Schedulingp. 152
Create a Cross-Functional Project Teamp. 155
Select a Life Cycle Based on Your Project's Risksp. 156
Keep Reasonable Work Hoursp. 157
Use Inch-Pebblesp. 158
Manage Interruptionsp. 159
Manage Defects Starting at the Beginning of the Projectp. 161
Maintaining Project Rhythmp. 167
Adopt or Adapt Continuous Integration for Your Projectp. 167
Create Automated Smoke Tests for the Buildp. 169
Implement by Feature, Not by Architecturep. 170
Get Multiple Sets of Eyes on Work Productsp. 175
Plan to Refactorp. 176
Utilize Use Cases, User Stories, Personas, and Scenarios to Define Requirementsp. 178
Separate GUI Design from Requirementsp. 179
Use Low-Fidelity Prototyping as Long as Possiblep. 180
Managing Meetingsp. 183
Cancel These Meetingsp. 183
Conduct These Types of Meetingsp. 186
Project Kickoff Meetingsp. 187
Release Planning Meetingsp. 187
Status Meetingsp. 188
Reporting Status to Managementp. 193
Project Team Meetingsp. 194
Iteration Review Meetingsp. 195
Troubleshooting Meetingsp. 195
Manage Conference Calls with Remote Teamsp. 197
Creating and Using a Project Dashboardp. 201
Measurements Can Be Dangerousp. 201
Measure Progress Toward Project Completionp. 204
Develop a Project Dashboard for Sponsorsp. 227
Use a Project Weather Reportp. 230
Managing Multisite Projectsp. 235
What Does a Question Cost You?p. 236
Identify Your Project's Cultural Differencesp. 237
Build Trust Among the Teamsp. 238
Use Complementary Practices on a Team-by-Team Basisp. 241
Look for Potential Multisite Project and Multicultural Problemsp. 249
Avoid These Mistakes When Outsourcingp. 251
Integrating Testing into the Projectp. 255
Start People with a Mind-Set Toward Reducing Technical Debtp. 255
Reduce Risks with Small Testsp. 256
TDD Is the Easiest Way to Integrate Testing into Your Projectp. 257
Use a Wide Variety of Testing Techniquesp. 260
Define Every Team Member's Testing Rolep. 263
What's the Right Developer-to-Tester Ratio?p. 267
Make the Testing Concurrent with Developmentp. 273
Define a Test Strategy for Your Projectp. 273
System Test Strategy Templatep. 274
There's a Difference Between QA and Testp. 276
Managing Programsp. 279
When Your Project Is a Programp. 279
Organizing Multiple Related Projects into One Releasep. 280
Organizing Multiple Related Projects Over Timep. 282
Managing Project Managersp. 285
Creating a Program Dashboardp. 287
Completing a Projectp. 289
Managing Requests for Early Releasep. 289
Managing Beta Releasesp. 290
When You Know You Can't Meet the Release Datep. 291
Shepherding the Project to Completionp. 299
Canceling a Projectp. 303
Managing the Project Portfoliop. 307
Build the Portfolio of All Projectsp. 307
Evaluate the Projectsp. 309
Decide Which Projects to Fund Nowp. 310
Rank-Order the Portfoliop. 310
Start Projects Fasterp. 311
Manage the Demand for New Features with a Product Backlogp. 313
Troubleshoot Portfolio Managementp. 315
More Detailed Information About Life Cyclesp. 323
Serial Life Cycle: Waterfall or Phase-Gatep. 323
Iterative Life Cycle: Spiral, Evolutionary Prototyping, Unified Processp. 327
Incremental Life Cycle: Staged Delivery, Design to Schedulep. 330
Agile Life Cyclesp. 331
Glossary of Termsp. 335
Bibliographyp. 337
Indexp. 343
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