Project Evaluation and Assessment.
Instructions: You are required to post one thread of 500–750 words for the Thread. You must reply to the two discussions post with at least 200–250 words for each. For each thread, you must support your assertions with at least 3 scholarly citations and 1 instance of biblical integration in current APA format. Each reply must incorporate at least 1 scholarly citation or 1 instance of biblical integration. Scholarly resources must come from peer-reviewed journals.
Topic: Three Principles of Control
Thread: Discuss The Three Principles of Control and reflect on the three principles relayed. From your research, what new information could be added to one of the three principles from the reading? Which principle can you relate to most readily, due to your experience in the workplace?
Principle # 1 The Buck Stops with the Project Manager
Principle # 2: How managers need accurate and timing information
Principle # 3: Having many eyes and brains watching and analyzing a project.
Replies: Respond to The two discussions, adding to the discussion by commenting on their experiences with one of the principles shared. Share an experience that is in some way related to the experiences related in the post. Be sure to include new information in your reply in order to advance the discussion.
Discussion # 1:
The Principles of Control
Project success relies on several control factors, and the monitoring and control process a project manager employs will determine that success. Having full oversight and understanding of the project; the ability to receive accurate, timely, and trustworthy data; and having a team that can be given process autonomy and engaged will improve the ultimate success of the project.
Principle One: The Buck Stops with the Project Manager
Complete ownership of every aspect of the project from start to finish to include the finances associated/related to the project, there are no divided responsibilities (Knight, Thomas, & Angus, 2012). Project managers may employ formal controls to manage the costs and resources of a project, thus allowing them complete oversight of the project (Detzen, Verbeeten, Gamm, & Möller, 2018). However, granting the team process autonomy can increase the success rate of projects (Detzen et al., 2018). Having complete oversight of a project is key to a project manager’s ability to lead a project team successfully. Without complete understanding and involvement in all aspects of the project, the project manager will not be able to utilize the resources of the project team to achieve success.
Principle Two: Project Managers Need Accurate, Timely Information
Good data and information are available at all times, as close to real time as possible, and it must be accurate and trustworthy (Knight et al., 2012). The evolution of technology certainly has improved this aspect of project management. However, as an emergency manager, or disaster project manager, this is the very area that makes a difference in the decisions made regarding life-safety reasons, and it also the most second-guessed aspect of our projects. The decisions made by the project teams regarding evacuations for disasters relies heavily on receiving accurate, timely, and trustworthy data. When the data changes in real-time it can create schedule and resource allocation challenges. This is not just data and information in real-time, this becomes project management in real-time, the analysis, decision-making, and actions must also occur simultaneously.
Principle Three: Many Eyes are Better than Two, and Many Brains are Better than One
If the project team sees and understands the fundamental data showing the project status, they can spot issues early, be involved in problem-solving, improving quality, and efficiency (Knight et al., 2012). One of the ways a project manager contributes to the control within a project team is by establishing the belief systems of the team, and specifically those regarding quality and teamwork (Rezania, Baker, & Burga, 2016). The leadership of a team has a direct effect on the quality and success of the team (Gorod, Hallo, & Nguyen, 2018). Engaging the project team, and encouraging collaboration have significant impacts on the cohesiveness and success of the project team.
Project managers must be cautious of holding too tightly to control the project as exemplified in Ecclesiastes 2:18-20 (NIV):
I hated all the things I had toiled for under the sun, because I must leave them to the one who comes after me. And who knows whether that person will be wise or foolish? Yet they will have control over all the fruit of my toil into which I have poured my effort and skill under the sun. This too is meaningless. So my heart began to despair over all my toilsome labor under the sun.
It requires balancing the role of leader and mentor, which is not always easy. Understanding that complete oversight of the project, receiving timely and accurate data, or information, will allow a project manager to rely on the team to see the issues that may arise, and ultimately solve them as well, is key to being a good project manager.
Detzen, N., Verbeeten, F. H. M., Gamm, N., & Möller, K. (2018). Formal controls and team adaptability in new product development projects. Management Decision, 56(7), 1541-1558. doi:10.1108/MD-07-2017-0692
Gorod, A., Hallo, L., & Nguyen, T. (2018). A systemic approach to complex project management: Integration of command-and-control and network governance: A SYSTEMIC APPROACH TO COMPLEX PROJECT MANAGEMENT. Systems Research and Behavioral Science, 35(6), 811-837. doi:10.1002/sres.2520
Knight, J., Thomas, R., & Angus, B., (2012). Chapter three: The three principles of control. Project Evaluation and Assessment. [VitalSource Bookshelf]. Retrieved from https://bookshelf.vitalsource.com/#/books/9781307055245/
Rezania, D., Baker, R., & Burga, R. (2016). Project control: An exploratory study of levers of control in the context of managing projects. Journal of Accounting & Organizational Change, 12(4), 614-635. doi:10.1108/JAOC-10-2015-0084
Discussion # 2:
The most significant concept already mentioned within this case was the development of a reporting system. A software or legacy system that allowed the project manager to track labor, expenditures and many other aspects of the project at any given time. Throughout the first principle, the project management team never mentioned performing an integrated change control process. An integrated change control process consists of reviewing all change requests; approving changes as well as managing changes against deliverables, assets, project documents, and the project management plan. Most importantly, discussing the decisions with all members within the project team (PMBOK, 2017).
Another issue I noticed was that the foreman’s guidance was accepted before the project manager thoroughly evaluated the repercussions. In reading the case, it seems as if the PM blindly agreed to a decision without formal evaluation. As a result, the manager lost complete control over one element within the project which later impacted the overall cost. On the other hand, I commend this PM for having full faith in his team and foreman however, he failed to monitor regularly and communicate consistently with his team to know exactly what was going on before it was too late. The case also mentioned the importance of project management tools to track progress and these tracking systems have shown proven effectiveness for many businesses. Even if this change was considered low-risk or low priority, it should’ve been captured and discussed.
Within my organization, our project manager is constantly stressed because sections hardly share accurate or timely information (principle 2). There’s a huge issue with information hoarding and troubled interpersonal relationships. Capturing up to date information, especially from the budget department is often difficult. Luckily, requested information is provided during weekly meetings but there are instances where the PM desires financial information immediately. Unfortunately, due to the professional climate in the office, he has a hard time maintaining control of the team. In my opinion, there is very little project control, since team members and section leads tend to confuse this concept with micromanagement. In short, managing effective information flow between project team members is probably the toughest issue to combat in my organization.
Most project managers spend a great deal of time planning and identifying each component within a project. Throughout the project, it is their job to ensure all risks are identified and minimized by monitoring the process meticulously. According to Wilson (2015), “the project manager must understand the importance of developing an effective monitoring and control system, as this is required to effectively control risks throughout the project lifecycle” (Wilson, 2015, p.210). As stated in the first paragraph, many of the financial issues presented could have been mitigated if proper monitoring and control procedures were in place. Additionally, the project manager should have maintained open lines of communication with the foreman and his team.
Managing people and processes is not an easy task. Amazingly, God has given us everything we need to accomplish any mission set before us. Exodus 35:35 (ESV), “He has filled them with skill to do every sort of work done by an engraver or by a designer or by an embroiderer in blue and purple and scarlet yarns and fine twined linen, or by a weaver—by any sort of workman or skilled designer.”
McGraw-Hill (2017). Create: Project Evaluation and Assessment. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Author. ISBN: 9781307055245.
Project Management Institute (2017). A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK Guide) (Current) Newtown Square, PA. Project Management Institute
Wilson, R. (2015). Mastering Risk and Procurement in Project Management Upper Saddle River, NJ. Pearson Education LTC. ISBN: 9780133837902.
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