System View of a Project For a project to be successful, a project manager and their team must take a system view of a project. What that means is that they need to keep the big picture in mind when making discussions regarding the project. They need to truly understand how the project impacts all aspects of an organization. In the sass’s the term systems approach began being used to describe this approach. The systems approach integrates the holistic and analytical approach to solving complex problems.
This includes the following: Systems Philosophy: Thinking about the big stricture. Understanding how all components of the project impact each other and the organization as a whole. Systems Analysis: Problem solving approach. Understanding the scope of the system and defining issues, limitations and solutions to the problems. Systems Management: Understanding every aspect of the system. Knowing how changes will impact the whole project and the organization. Discussion 6 – Project Life Cycle The project life cycle is a collection of categorized activities created to accomplish the project’s goals or objectives.
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These are grouped into steps called phases. A phase can be grouped by who is involved, by product, service needs or by change requests. Phases make a project easier for the project manager to measure achievement of goals and Justify their decisions to make changes, corrections, or terminate a phase or the project in its entirety. A product life cycle is a theoretical idea of where a product’s sales are today and an educated guess on where the sales are heading. The five stages of a product’s life are development, introduction, growth, maturity, and decline.
A project life cycle on the other hand, shows the steps needed to omelet a project with specific targeted results. Such as enhancing, changing or stopping production of a product that has a decline in sales. Exercise 5 -Importance of Top Management Support The level of support a project manager gets from upper management can make or break a project. If a project manager has upper management team that believes and backs their project they will be able to get the funding, resources, and cross divisional cooperation that is needed.
If a project manager is lacking any or all of these things it will be impossible to complete the project. Let’s talk about cross divisional cooperation first. It’s easy for a project manager to approach a staff member to ask for advice or help with a project, however, if their managers are not on board with the project the staff member will not be able to pull time away from their day to day tasks to help. If their manager is on board with it they will help by shifting duties within their department to help free up time. Management isn’t on board, a project manager may be given a budget that is not realistic for the resources needed to complete the project. They also would not be so quick to increase the budget if changes came up that where unexpected. Most managers have “be there, done that” when it’s come to projects. Since they have the knowledge and experience it is important to have them on your side. They can help you save time and money on tasks that they may have already learned won’t work. If you are struggling with a team member or a manager who isn’t being cooperative, they can give you advice on how to persuade them.
Exercise 6 – Virtual Teams Virtual teams are the new craze hitting the business world. Increase in globalization and outsourcing are the main reasons for the increase. Today’s advanced technology has made it possible for specialists to work together on a reject from different cities, states or continents. There are both pros and cons to working on a virtual team. Some of the pros and cons are listed below. Pros: Lower cost for overhead since workers are not staffed in the office. Better work life balance for workers.
They save both time and money by not being required to come to an office. Happy staff equals more productive staff. Providing larger pool of candidates with specialized skills. They can advertise anywhere in the world without limitation 2417 project support by hiring workers in different time zones. Cons: Increased chance of communication issues More difficult for staff to exchange knowledge or information More difficult to define roles Beeline has created a service to help organizations manage their virtual teams.
They have created a list of Team Roles that are used to identify people’s behavioral strengths and weaknesses in the workplace. This information can be used to: Build productive working relationships Select and develop high-performing teams Aid recruitment processes I have worked on both in house teams and virtual teams. I personally prefer a virtual team over an in house team. We saved money and had happy workers who were highly productive. Discussion 3 – Functional, Matrix and Project Organizations There are three classifications of organizational structures.
Functional, matrix and project structures all have an impact on how a project manager needs to manage their project. Functional organizational structure is the most common. This type of structure is based on functionality of the organization starting at staff level. Functional managers or vice presidents report to the CEO and the project managers, who are usually called project coordinators, report to the functional managers. In this type of structure the project manager has no budget control and little to no authority.
Project organizational structure has the same type of hierarchy, however instead of functional managers or vice presidents reporting to the CEO, the program mangers report to them directly. The project manager has budget control and almost 100% Matrix organization structure meets the other two in the middle. Workers report to both a functional manager for the day to day tasks and the project manager for the project base tasks. In this type of structure both the project manager and the national manager share the budgeting and decision making authority.