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Blog > Do your projects run away from you? We can help!

Do your projects run away from you? We can help!

posted on 9:41 AM, August 30, 2016
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Effective project management is a lot harder than it looks. It is also extremely important. Do you want to learn how to deliver 30% of your projects under budget? How about a 21% increase in productivity and 19% of projects completed ahead of schedule?

Although project management is harder than it looks, the good news is, it is all learnable! There are five basic phases to a project:

  1. Initiation

    This is where a project idea is evaluated to determine whether or not it benefits the organization. You may also compare different project ideas to determine which is the best one to proceed with.

  2. Planning

    This is one of the most important phases of a project, especially smaller projects. This is when you agree on the scope for the project, defining clearly what will and will not be done. When (not if) things change, you sit down with your boss or your stakeholder, to explain the change in situation and decide together what will be needed, in terms of additional work, additional time, and additional resources. Having agreed on a scope to begin with, you can be very clear on the additional resources needed and why.

  3. Execution

    This is the meat of the project, where the outcome-related work gets done. So, for example, if the project is to run a recreation program, then the execution phase would be the time when participants are doing the actual recreation.

  4. Performance and Control

    This happens at the same time as execution. Compare the actual progress of the project to the plan. Make changes, as necessary, to keep to the plan. Alternately, if you learn something which throws part of the plan into question, then meet with your stakeholders to make a joint decision about how to move forward.

  5. Closing

    This is the other most important phase of a small project. Always, always take a little bit of time to debrief on the project: how did it go? What went well? What would you do differently next time? Learning from your own successes and mistakes is the single best way to improve at anything, including your project management skills.

The Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBoK) further divides these five main phases into 19 sub-phases, including things like budget, work breakdown structure, key performance indicators, and risk management.

Volunteer Ottawa, in partnership with NPO-PM, is pleased to help people just like you to manage your projects better.

  • It starts with a workshop at our office. We will provide high-quality, immediately applicable, NPO specific Project Management skills via a four session course on Project Management specifically for NPOs.
  • Then we will provide one-on-one Coaching follow up by experienced and certified Project Managers, who can consult on your project for up to 20 hours over 3-4 months (longer by special arrangement).
  • You will also receive membership of an online community to share experiences and receive answers to your questions and a set of simple, practical tools to use in your daily work

To learn more, and to register, visit our website.

Volunteer Ottawa offers a comprehensive suite of courses related to organizational operations. Click here for more information, and to register. Subscribe to our Event RSS Feed to be among the first to know when a new workshop is added to the schedule.

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