Project Management Tools (day 2, post 2)

Project Management Tools

  • Software – Office has a program that might work for you
  • Visuals – diagrams, graphs, charts – library projects can have progress thermometers, too! Timelines
  • Literature – Most libraries have books on project management – “what a concept…” says Mary
  • Lists – Do a list that works for you. 
  • Experts
  • Others with experience

Be Selective – Use what works for you.  Find a system – lists, palm pilot, calendar, post it notes…

  • lists (clean cat box, meet with president, send invoice, write letter) – Mary keeps work and life on her Word List 
  • simple calendar (Outlook calendar as an archive of what you’ve done, laminated yearly calendar for long-range)
  • timeline with targets
  • work breakdown sructure (Industrial work, contractors, etc.)
  • logical task flow – example of one of the many tools developed (such as in the military)
  • task analysis – flow chart tech services…review the work processes and how they’ve changed over time
  • GANTT chart
  • PERT – Performance Evaluation Review Technique
  • CPM – Critical Path Method – What has to be done first?  What is the order of operations/order of importance?
  • Flowchart – “Not everyone thinks this way, that is why there are so many different options”
  • Outline
  • List
  • Spreadsheet

Celebrate Intermediate Successes

  1. Rejoice/publicize completion of each stage & progress towards goals
  2. Acknowledge contributions of individuals and groups – public kudos, brief note in personnel file, positive notes
  3. Provide small rewards – “Nothing succeeds like success” Do you expect excellence without “thank you’s”?  Develop this skill – leave presents, notes, show your appreciation, cookies, birthday cards (‘amazing how much that matters to people’)
  4. Keep a central graph – Especially for big projects and projects that inter-connect with other people’s work…

Celebrate the Conclusion – Officially declare it DONE!, Throw a party, find a hokey ceremony that brings closure (throw out the cards after a retrospective conversion project), make it an organizational celebration, write letters for personnel files for stars, and whatever other ideas you come up with!  Symbolism…

Roles to be filled:  Leader, Cheerleader, Whip, Pressure valve (inside jokes, imaginary scotch, etc.), and/or Communicator.  Don’t be a mother/father.  This isn’t what people need.  That’s a dependency relationship and it can get us into trouble…

Additional Tools for Success

  • Laugh together – keep your sense of humor
  • Acknowledge the stress & frustration
  • Remember that this is NOT LIFE or DEATH…really, it’s not.  Mary says, “Libraries can be your vocation, you can be passionate about what you do, but you need to remember and remind that “this is a library, it’s not anyone’s life.”
  • Be realistic
  • Remember to breathe – “we are only as smart as our next breath” – oxygen needs to get to the brain, especially to stay calm and to make good decisions
  • Do not take it home with you – leave it in the library.  I love this story: “when you get ready to leave, stop, and turn to your office or work space and say “Stay!” with conviction” – Our brains in some ways are really stupid and what we tell it, actually happens. 
  • Have a life

Project Management

Conceptualize :: Define :: Plan :: Impelement :: Complete it :: Reflect and learn


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