• Sample pages
  • Page 1


    The first step is to develop a charter. Before you can expend resources on the project, you need to have the authority to do such. The charter gives you the authority to expend your organization’s resources. Typically, the person who is financially obligating the required resources will provide the charter. This person is known as the sponsor. In this scenario, your boss is the sponsor.

    Hopefully, your sponsor through the charter provides enough information so that you know what direction to head as well as the desired end state. It is possible that your sponsor won’t be able to provide the needed detail. In this case, the first part of the project may be to develop the charter. Also, the charter should be able to last the entire project; therefore, if the charter changes, one may have to consider terminating that project and beginning another.

    Here are some key questions that the charter should answer:

    Why are we doing this project? In any leadership situation, one of the most important issues that the leader must understand and be able to convey is, why are we doing this? It is important to determine the legitimacy and importance of the project before you begin. Running projects is very challenging and can become very frustrating. But understanding the “why” behind the project helps you and the team to stay focused on the big picture during the project.

  • Page 2


    After you have been issued the charter and therefore authorized to begin work, you need to begin determining the scope. The scope defines what you are actually doing and in some cases what you are not doing. The goal is to develop a set of deliverables called work packages that represent the entire project. The sum of all of the deliverables should equal the totality of your project so that 100 percent of the work packages equals 100 percent of the project. In order to create these work packages, you need to know what the requirements are so that you can tie each work package to a requirement.

    You begin with developing and understanding the requirements. Using the list of stakeholders that you developed earlier, you will begin to interview those stakeholders so you can create and organize the requirements. An example of a requirement may be that the event site for the conference must hold at least 60 people and have easy access to hotel rooms for those who have to fly in and stay overnight. Then, you want to start decomposing your project into work packages. Decomposition is a powerful technique that enables you to take a complicated project and break it down into smaller, more manageable pieces. For illustrative purposes, below is an example of a work breakdown structure (WBS) for the conference that you have been placed in charge of. You can either present the WBS as a graphical representation or in an outline form. Remember that a work package is not a list of activities but rather the lowest level of detail that represents a deliverable. In some cases, the work package may become a project for the owner of the work package.

  • About the Author

    Jon McGlothian is the cofounder and president of TMOG, LLC. As a graduate of West Point, he completed his service with Third Ranger Battalion. He earned the Bronze Star for meritorious actions while serving his country. After earning his MBA from the University of Memphis, he was awarded the Kurt Christoff Award for being the outstanding MBA student of the year. In 2005, The University of Memphis honored Jon as the Young Alumni of the Year for outstanding contributions to the university and community. He is also a Project Management Professional (PMP)® (1379118) as well as a certified management accountant (CMA, 22459) and is a certified Six Sigma Green Belt. He has also held several executive positions at Fortune 500 companies. He has taught a variety of business and leadership courses at a local university and is a contributor for the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) – Fifth Edition, Project Management Institute, Inc., 2013.

    He and his family currently reside in Virginia Beach, Virginia, where he actively serves on several nonprofit boards.

    Jon brings to bear his experience as an officer in the US Army Ranger Regiment, a Fortune 500 company executive, an entrepreneur, and a community leader to this effort. He is highly dedicated to developing leaders who can manage, deliver the job, and be an inspiration to others.

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Data Manager, Digitally Assisted Close Air Support at Scientific Research Corporation

The Project Manager’s Quick Start Guide is an excellent book for new and evolving Project Managers. It reviews how projects are supposed to be run, as well as what you can expect coming in the door to your first project or even your first one at a new organization. Every project is different and this is the first book that I’ve seen that focuses on the need to know information from first-hand experience and not just theories and best practices. I wish I’d read this book before my first ‘real project’ and will keep it close by as a refresher.
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Assistant Director of IT at City of Chesapeake

PMP is a registered mark of the Project Management Institute, Inc.

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