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Teamwork and Project Management


Teamwork and Project Management Karl A. Smith Purdue University/ University of Minnesota Engineers Leadership Institute Minnesota Society for – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Teamwork and Project Management

Teamwork and Project Management Karl A.
Smith Purdue University/ University of
Minnesota Engineers Leadership
Institute Minnesota Society for Professional
Engineers November, 2008
Teambuilding and Project Management Perspectives
  • Capitalizing on individual differences
  • Leading a team to consensus the importance of
  • Expanding a teams capabilities
  • Perspectives on the role of project manager
  • Key components to project and/or team success
  • Project coordination

. . . Tomorrows corporation is a collection of
projects . . . Everyone needs to learn to work
in teams with multiple independent experts--each
will be dependent upon all the others voluntarily
giving their best. . . .The new lead
actor/boss--the Project Manager--must learn to
command and coach that is, to deal with
paradox. From Eight Commandments for Project
Managers Tom Peters
  • A project is a temporary endeavor undertaken to
    create a unique product, service, or result
  • -- Project Management Body of Knowledge
    (PMBOK), 2004
  • A project is a combination of human and nonhuman
    sources pulled together in a temporary
    organization to achieve a specified purpose.
  • -- Cleland and Kerzner, 1985

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The Project Management Body of Knowledge is
the sum of knowledge within the profession of
project management
The Project Management Body of Knowledge is the
sum of knowledge within the profession of project
management page 3.
Project Management is not just scheduling
(Lewis, p. 8) Its the intersection
of Tools People Systems
Developing Project Management Expertise
  • What is expertise?
  • What is project management expertise?
  • Why is this important?
  • How to develop expertise?

Expertise Implies
  • a set of cognitive and metacognitive skills
  • an organized body of knowledge that is deep and
  • an ability to notice patterns of information in a
    new situation
  • flexibility in retrieving and applying that
    knowledge to a new problem

Bransford, Brown Cocking. 1999. How people
learn. National Academy Press.
Expert Project Managers
  1. Take a moment to recall one of your expert
    project managers
  2. Describe him or her briefly
  3. Listen as others describe their expert project
  4. List common characteristics

Characteristics of Expert Project Managers
  1. ?

What is takes to be a good project
manager --Barry Posner (1987) Communications
(84 of the respondents listed it) Listening Per
suading Organizational skills (75) Planning Goa
l-setting Analyzing Team Building Skills
(72) Empathy Motivation Esprit de Corps
Leadership Skills (68) Sets Example Energetic
Vision (big picture) Delegates Positive Coping
Skills (59) Flexibility Creativity Patience P
ersistence Technological Skills
(46) Experience Project Knowledge
Paradox of Expertise
  • The very knowledge we wish to teach others (as
    well as the knowledge we wish to represent in
    computer programs) often turns out to be the
    knowledge we are least able to talk about.

Teamwork and Project Management Exercise Project
Life Cycle The engineering method is design
under constraints Wm. Wulf, President, National
Academy of Engineering The engineering method is
the use of heuristics to cause the best change in
a poorly understood situation within the
available resources Billy Koen, Mechanical
Engineering Professor, UT-Austin, author
Discussion of the Method
Team Member Roles
  • Task Recorder
  • Process Recorder
  • Materials Manager

Design objective Design and build a tower that
can support a concentrated load (standard book)
at a height of least 25 cm. The tower is built
from index cards and office tape. Design
rules Materials are 100 index cards and one roll
of office tape Cards can be folded but not
torn No piece of tape can be longer than 2
inches Tower cannot be taped to the floor,
ceiling, or any other object Tower must be in one
piece, and easily transported in one hand Time to
design and build 20 minutes Height is measured
from the ground to the lowest corner of the book
placed on top Tower must support book for at
least 10 seconds before the measurement is
made Room must be cleaned up before measurements
are made.
Group Processing Plus/Delta Format
Delta (?) Things Group Could Improve
Plus () Things That Group Did Well
  • Teamwork Project Management Heuristics--Examples
  • Identify the weak link and Allocate resources
    to the weak link
  • Freeze the design--at some stage in the project
    (when about 75 of the time or resources are used
    up) the design must be frozen
  • Discuss the process and ask meta-level
    questions, e.g., What are we doing? Why are we
    doing it? How does it help?

The prevailing view of the project life cycle is
that projects go through distinct phases, such
as Conceiving and defining the
project Planning the project Implementing the
plan Completing and evaluating the
project Operate and maintain project A typical
construction project has the following seven
phases (Kerzner, 1998) 1. Planning, data
gathering, and procedures 2. Studies and basic
engineering 3. Major review 4. Detail
engineering 5. Detail engineering/construction
overlap 6. Construction 7. Testing and
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The Project 50 Tom Peters
  • Traditional
  • Create 10
  • Sell 0
  • Implement 90
  • Exit 0
  • The Project 50
  • Create 30
  • Sell 30
  • Implement 30
  • Exit 10

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Wysocki Rudd, Figure 2.8, page 47
Project Managers Role Over the Project Life
Cycle Planning Organizing Staffing Direc
ting Controlling See Smith (2004) p. 67-68
Successful Projects
  1. Take a moment to recall one of your most
    successful projects
  2. Describe it briefly
  3. Listen as others describe their successful
  4. List common characteristics

  • ?

A recent survey of technology projects in the
United States by the Project Management Institute
reveals some startling percentages. Close to
half of the projects started were never finished,
30 were completed but took at least twice as
long as expected, some took 5 times as long.
Only 10 of the projects were finished on time.
Standish Group Survey of Software Project 1994
(Lewis, 2000, p. 109) 17 Succeeded 50
Revised 33 Failed
Critical Success Factors and Their Importance for
System Implementation (Listed in decreasing order
of correlation) Pinto (1986), See Smith (2004),
p. 67 1.Project mission. Initial clearly
defined goals and general directions. 2.Top
management support. Willingness of top
management to provide the necessary resources and
authority/power for implementation
success. 3.Schedule plans. A detailed
specification of the individual action steps for
system implementation. 4.Client consultation.
Communication, consultation, and active listening
to all parties impacted by the proposed project.
5.Personnel. Recruitment, selection, and
training of the necessary personnel for the
implantation project team. 6.Technical tasks.
Availability of the required technology and
expertise to accomplish the specific technical
action steps to bring the project on-line.
7.Client acceptance. The act of "selling" final
product to its ultimate intended users.
8.Monitoring and feedback. Timely provision of
comprehensive control information at each stage
in the implementation process. 9.Communication.
The provision of an appropriate network and
necessary data to all key actors in the project
implementation process. 10.Troubleshooting.
Ability to handle unexpected crises and
deviations from plan.
Top Ten Reasons Why Projects Succeed (Standish
Group, 2000)
  • Executive management support
  • User involvement
  • Experienced project manager
  • Clear business objectives
  • Minimized scope
  • Standardized infrastructure
  • Firm basic requirements
  • Formal methodology
  • Reliable estimates
  • Skilled staff

Wysocki Rudd, p. 34
Predictors of Lowered Project SuccessWilliam M.
  • Unrealistic project work plans
  • Inability to deal early with suspected problem
  • Technical complexities not well communicated to
    team members
  • Conflict between client expectations and the
    state of deliverables
  • Insufficient involvement on the part of senior
    management early in the life cycle

What is a project?(Cleland and Kerzner, 1985
Nicholas, 1990)
  • a combination of human and nonhuman sources
    pulled together in a temporary organization to
    achieve a specified purpose.
  • Features
  • Definable purpose with established goals
  • Cost, time and performance requirements
  • Multiple resources across organizational lines
  • One-time activity
  • Element of risk
  • Temporary activity
  • Process with phases/ project life cycle

Performance, Cost, and Time Project Targets
Project Success Quadruple Constraint
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