Archive for February, 2014

I have to profess before I go too far into this blog, that I am a great fan of book, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by the great Douglas Adams.  I remember watching this on public television on the olden days, the special effects were not so grand but everything else about the program was […]

By Wally Stegall and Jon M Quigley Collecting and Reporting Material One approach to collecting and reporting material content is the International Material Data System (IMDS).  IMDS is a computer-based material data system used and funded primarily by automotive OEM’s (Original Equipment Manufacturer of cars, trucks, heavy vehicles, agricultural equipment, construction equipment, industrial equipment, military […]

Sources of Conflict There are challenges aplenty awaiting project managers when it comes to gathering a collection of individuals assigned to eventually become a team and produce the organization’s objective as defined by the project.  The business mantra of doing more with less – often less time and certainly less resources (and available talent) do […]

A discussion of risk would not be completed without a discussion of probability and severity.  When we are looking at risky event, we are in essence establishing or assessing the probability of some undesired event coming to fruition.  However, even our desired events, for example the completion of a task on the critical path at […]

Survival of the fittest is not just a biological concern.  Our business must constantly adapt to external stimuli and find better, quicker ways of performing our work.  One way to accomplish this growth is through actions sometimes referred to as project post mortem, or an after action report.  We have a plethora of tools of […]

Check lists are a time honored way of keeping track of breaking down an objective and monitoring progress.  There are a number of benefits to using check lists.  Check lists should not be confused with a Work Breakdown Structure (WBS).  A WBS is a form of a check list of all of the tasks required […]

What are we trying to accomplish with a communications plan?  Effective project management is the efficient achieving of an organization’s objectives.  To do that, we have to keep our project team informed and working toward the target.  That includes our project sponsor and other stakeholders.  Ultimately our plan should be able to quickly answer the […]

We have a running discussion with some project managers and line managers on the topic of responsibility.  The organization structure is matrix (weak) with seeming aspirations to strong matrix.  The project managers attempting to drive the project are frequently confronted with the line management saying – “it is our responsibility”, or “trust us to deliver”. […]

My work experience informs me that the loss of slack is a big risk to projects. Without this wiggle room, we reduce our probability of success. Projects scheduled out to the last available date just do not work. The reality is these are not manufacturing or routine tasks and jobs. Even the rather routine tasks […]

By Kim Robertson and  Jon M Quigley When you think of product design and development what comes first to mind? Is it an understanding of our business objectives (scope) followed by functional decomposition of requirements and allocating them to various systems and subsystems to achieve that objective? Is it design to manufacture with designers, facility […]