Getting Started in Project Management

Project management, the process of guiding a project from the beginning through the middle to the end is indeed very taxing. This is because the project manager coordinates other professionals to achieve results. It is therefore a big intellectual relief that Paula Martin and Karen Tate, two project management experts, have proffered a solution in this text entitled “Getting Started in Project Management”.Martin is the chief executive officer of MartinTate, a management consulting and training company. Martin is the co-author of six books. She works with project teams to help them improve on performance. Martin has been a consultant on issues related to improving organisational performance for more than ten years.Tate is the president of MartinTate as well as a project management professional. She has more than 20 years of project management experience and teaches project management to teams in organisations around the world. According to Martin and Tate, project management is a valuable component of both professional and personal life.They educate that whether you are working on an international project for a Fortune 500 company or organising a family reunion, project management is essential to ensuring timely and efficient completion of any project.Martin and Tate remark that if you are new to project management, you are definitely not alone. They say lots of people are discovering that project management is a tool that can help make their projects more successful.These authors illuminate that for many people, working on a project can be frustrating as team members refuse to agree on what should be done or how to do it and deadlines are missed. Martin and Tate however stress that projects can be both fun and successful if you use an effective method for helping your work through the steps of the project.Using their Collaborative, Open architecture, Results-oriented and Easy-to-use Project Management methodology called “CORE Project Management methodology” for short, these authors offer a foundation for anyone willing to learn or enhance his or her project management skills.Martin and Tate identify four phases of project management as project initiation, planning, execution and close-out. They say besides outlining the project management process, this text teaches you how to utilise the tools that drive it.
Martin and Tate submit that you will also learn in this text, the seven keys to project management success; different approaches to the process; how to assess risk and avoid pitfalls by identifying them early; scheduling and budgeting techniques that will keep your project on time and on the money.Structurally, this text is segmented into 14 chapters. Chapter one is entitled “The basics”. According to these authors here, before we can begin our journey through the land of project management, we need to cover a few basics. The first question we need to address is, “What exactly is project?” In the words of these authors, “For example, is building a custom house a project? What if you’re a developer and you have a crew that builds a standard house over and over again? Is that a project?”Martin and Tate say obviously, projects and business processes are not the same thing. They educate that project management is a set of tools, techniques and knowledge that, when applied, will help you produce better results for your project. Martin and Tate add that trying to manage a project without project management is like trying to play football without a game plan. “The coach would get the players together and say, ‘How should we play this game? We’re supposed to get more points than the other team and to do that we have to score goals. Now everyone go out and do what you think needs to be done in order to win’,” stress these experts.Chapter two is based on the subject matter of initiating a project. Here, these authors educate that the first phase of a project, which is called “initiation”, begins after management decides to authorise the project. According to them, the goal of initiation is to set the direction for your project and define any constraints on the project.They add that both project direction and constraints should come from the sponsor, because the sponsor is the management person who is accountable for ensuring that the project meets the strategic goals of the organisation and that the benefits of the project outweigh its costs. Martin and Tate say the direction and constraints for the project are outlined in a document called the “charter” and this document is the responsibility of the sponsor.They add that however, many sponsors either do not know how to write a charter or claim not to have the time to do so. Martin and Tate say as a result, it is very probable that you will find yourself writing the charter for the sponsor and then have the sponsor review and approve it when you are through.These authors stress that in the customer-needs section of your charter, you are trying to define the real reason why the project is being undertaken for the customers.In chapters three to nine, Martin and Tate examine concepts such as leading the project team; kicking off the project; planning the scope; organising the project; assessing risk; developing a schedule and developing a budget.Chapter 10 is entitled “Assembling the project plan”. According to these authors, after the planning activities, it is time to assemble the plan. Martin and Tate add that the project plan is the output of the planning phase. They educate that it captures the information you have compiled with the team and lays out how the project will be executed. In their words, “If the charter represents the expectations and wishes for the project, the project plan represents the projected reality. Therefore, it’s the plan that you will use to guide the project as you move forward into execution.”These experts also discuss the scope plan. They educate that the scope plan defines what will be produced for the customers, adding that in order to produce the final deliverable, you have to organise the work of the project. Martin and Tate say you need to break down the final deliverable into interim deliverables and someone in the team is assigned accountability for each one.They add that then, you define the sub-projects and assign each deliverable to a sub-project. These experts guide that finally, you need to make sure you have the right people in the team. They stress that you now assess the skills you need to create the deliverables and review your list of stakeholders to make sure they have representation in the team or a team member liaison assigned to keep them involved in the project.In chapters 11 to 14, Martin and Tate analytically X-ray concepts such as team-based tools; executing the plan; closing out the project and summing up.Stylistically, this text is fantastic. The language is simple, embroidered with standard punctuation while the 14 chapters are brilliantly handled. What’s more, Martin and Tate make use of an acronym by collapsing their Collaborative, Open architecture, Results-oriented and Easy-to-use Project Management Methodology into CORE Project Management Methodology for short. This is a conceptual amplification and creative structural compression. They employ graphics, especially the one on the outside front cover, to achieve visual enhancement of readers’ understanding. The layout of the text is also visually appealing.However, some concepts are repeated in this text. Probably these authors deliberately use this style to create emphasis and ensure long memory on readers’ part. It is also written in Standard American English. That is why you have “…someone on the team…” (page 156), instead of the Standard British English “…Someone in the team…”, etc.On a note of analytical finality, this text is intellectually revealing. It is a must-read for those who want to achieve success in project implementation.

7 Game-Changing Marketing Trends You Need To Know About

Over the last few years, technology has changed a lot. The pace of change in technology is very fast. It is getting even more difficult for marketing firms to keep up with this change in technology. So what kind of technological change should you expect soon? You need to be prepared for these upcoming changes. Here are some, coming very soon:1. Relationship MarketingRelationship marketing is also known as customer relationship management (CRM). It is focused on long-term engagement and relationships with the customers instead of short term relations. The aim of relationship marketing is to emotionally engage customers with the brands. This leads to free word of mouth marketing and loyalty. It is different from traditional marketing approach because it is not focused on individual profit generation.2. Marketing AutomationMarket automation refers to the latest technologies and software that are designed for marketing departments. These software and online channels are used to promote products at different platforms like emails, blogs, social media and websites.3. Location-Based Marketing TechnologyThe location-based technology uses mobile phone location for marketing the products. It is another direct marketing strategy. An opt-in is usually activated to process this type of marketing. What actually happens is that when opt-in is activated it starts tracking the location of device holder and sends a text about nearby product or service which is available. This includes any free coupon schemes or any discount deals. This technology actually bridges the physical gap between customers and the available products in their nearby places.4. Virtual RealityOne of the most prominent marketing strategies that should be utilized by every marketer is virtual reality. Virtual reality artificially creates sensory experiences. It can be aimed at sight, hearing, smell, taste, or touch. It is used in the depiction of business products, games, movies, and arts.5. Ephemeral MarketingSnapchat is one of the best examples of ephemeral marketing. It is one of the latest leaps in technological development. Marketing firms and businesses can use it for their own benefit. Ephemeral marketing means providing something to the customers for a very short period of time. This has many advantages. For instance, when discounts and special offers are announced like this for a limited time period it will enhance the excitement of customers. Similarly giving a sneak peek of the new product, which is not yet launched in the market, could also increase the excitement of people. In this way, people will be more attracted towards the product.6. Search Past Search EnginesMany social media sites like Facebook and Twitter are trying to create their own search engines. It will also boost the marketing opportunities for the marketers so they need to be prepared for this change.7. The Internet of ThingsInternet of things is actually a network of physical objects. For instance vehicles, devices, buildings etc. which are electronically connected with each other. For marketers, it means that their data is more easily accessible to the customers so they can market their products more efficiently.

There is an excessive amount of traffic coming from your Region.

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Working Capital Management and Commercial Finance Consulting

Without adequate information about what should be done to obtain small business loans in the current extreme circumstances, most business borrowers are increasingly confused. Business finance consulting that provides practical advice about overcoming current lending difficulties will be helpful to business owners. Nevertheless, because of a chaotic commercial financing climate, effective working capital management advice has become a valuable and rare commodity. Even though they are clearly in demand, business financing experts are simply not easy to locate.Some very helpful and effective business finance advice is available at no cost, and business owners should usually start any search for help by reviewing such free advice first. Two notable examples of sources available for free online are The Working Capital Journal and The Commercial Mortgages Guide. However, the normal complexity of small business loans combined with a chaotic commercial lending climate is likely to increase the necessity of individualized commercial finance consulting assistance from a commercial financing expert.Such personalized business finance consulting help will not be as easy to find as might be expected. In many cases, commercial financing advisors are not willing to charge a fixed commercial finance consulting fee that requires them to spend more time and frequently offers them much less compensation than provided by lucrative loan fees that are often well over $5000. If small business owners can find a commercial loan expert willing to provide these professional consulting services for a reasonable fixed fee, a likely cost range will be $1500 to $3000 for a basic but thorough consulting effort.One of the most important efforts that commercial borrowers should undertake with a qualified business finance consultant is to explore contingency financing options which might be necessary due to the current upheaval in financial markets. For many years I have advocated the importance of “always having a Plan B” for working capital financing and other business financing.Now that many banks have routinely reduced or eliminated business lines of credit or recalled commercial loans, the true value of formulating contingency plans for small business loans and commercial real estate financing has become very apparent. When they are unprepared to do so, business owners will find it much more difficult to find alternative sources for financing. With a practical contingency financing plan, business owners will not be caught by surprise and will be ready to take quick action if their current commercial lender suddenly changes course and revokes existing commercial finance agreements.Most small business owners have their own areas of special interest in addition to a “Plan B” scenario to investigate with the help of a candid business finance consulting effort. Regardless of the specific topic, it will usually be beneficial for a business borrower to have a straightforward discussion with a small business loan expert.In some cases, these discussions can be thought of as “getting a second opinion” for new commercial financing or refinancing of existing debt. Business owners might not have previously seen the point in paying even a modest consulting fee to get such a second opinion, but recent events have changed that perspective in most cases. Now that many banks have made it so painfully clear that they can make really big mistakes when the right questions are not asked beforehand, more and more commercial borrowers readily understand that they might need someone else looking out for their best interests.For tasks like those described above, how should small business owners find a business finance consultant to help? One suggestion is to include the power of the internet and conduct a search for “working capital finance expert” or “commercial financing and consulting”. Hopefully you will have a Plan B to help guide you if that approach is not sufficiently effective.

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