Blogging while Jogging

Kenneth White

MGT 598

Dr. Cook


While my experience with actual project management is limited, my knowledge of what it takes to be a project manager has increased significantly. With the lessons and material discussed in class, it has enabled myself to more clearly define what project management is and how to engage in the many obstacles that come with it. Speaking of obstacles, I’ve found an interesting article discussing tips or managing a rogue project.

There are a lot of different issues that could go wrong with a project. To make things worse, a project within a project can always pop up. You’re still driving to accomplish a goal within a constraint. While these rogue projects come up you’re dealing with shorter times constraints. Usually these mini projects may range from one day to a month, but it depends on the business.

Typically a specific project may have numerous ramifications. They may affect multiple groups, whether customers directly, or the shareholders. Rogue projects on the other hand, or a project within a project, usually focus on a single goal. Because the goal of this particular “rogue project” is smaller in can be easier to get the project off the ground. The limitations of time require you as the project manager to act more quickly and thus get the project going instantly. Rogue projects can also be less resource intensive. While there can be exceptions to this, Rogue projects tend to rely on more on specialized talent and resources versus the whole larger project. There is lesser supply of financing, as well as labor or materials. This is because the rogue project usually only addresses a temporally specific function, rather than the “big picture” initiative.

Collaboration is key to successfully tackle these projects. In addition, prioritizing risk assessments follows. The limited timeframe of a rogue project truncates a large chunk of procedures associated with traditional PM. Risk assessment can be a very long process, while its still crucial to anticipate the weaknesses and possible vulnerabilities in the planning phase.  A good project manager should be able to determine which risk directly may have an impact on the rogue project. Being able to asses the risks that directly relate to the projects values are the ones you should spend time on.

Ultimately, no matter how big or small your project may be, as a project manager, you still need to have a plan. Now I’m not talking about the creation of a committee. A short timeframe doesn’t negate the importance of planning. according to PMI, approximately 44% of projects experience scope creep. The importance of a work breakdown is crucial. A work breakdown structure can be helpful in order to divide the project into smaller portions so that it will have more accurate cost and time estimates.

5 thoughts on “Blogging while Jogging

  1. Great article you posted, Kenny. Although nobody likes them, Ad Hoc projects unfortunately occur more frequently that fully thought out and planned projects. Knowing how to respond and act is imperative as a Project Manager handling the short turnaround. Our field project for this course can be thought of as an Ad Hoc project simply because of the time we have to prepare and execute a charity event. I think the most important thing our group has done is the constant open communication with team members and creating a plan from the very beginning. Like the article stated, to manage rogue projects, you must have a plan.

    ps. surprised you were able to blog while jogging! I can barely breathe let alone blog haha

  2. Kenneth, great find on the article! I find myself doing the Ad Hoc projects all the time, many times not realizing that this is an Ad Hoc project. I am thinking that many of these are developed when you are running into problems/risks on your main project. These rogue projects are usually pretty simple but also require time and sometimes investment. It comes down to a question, is it better to have one big project with multiple Ad Hoc projects? Or, is it better have a multiple medium projects and no Ad Hoc projects. Personally, I love Ad Hoc projects because these little things are what keeps things interesting when working on a big project.

  3. Ken that’s something to type a blog while jogging. I can barely text while walking lol. Anyways good article and topic, these Ad Hoc projects pop up in manufacturing more times than not. During the initial planning of projects you try account for all aspects, but as we all know that’s not the case all the time. Customer may change the specs resulting in engineering changing the design and leaves you as the leader of the project to work with tight time constraints. Sometimes these changes create additional smaller projects were you need to have assistance and may have an application engineer help with specialized equipment that is need for this project. These projects are unavoidable, because they are out of our controls. What makes good project managers or project leads is how well do we respond.

  4. I think project management can be called change management in a way. Small changes in a plan or project that necessitate other changes which can lead to more changes … and so on. Project scope creep in project management refers to uncontrolled changes or added objectives. It means additional requirements needed to achieve the new objectives, therefore the capacity of project resources can be overwhelmed.

    I also found another project statistic: Not surprisingly, less than a third of projects are completed on time and within budget. The Standish Group’s CHAOS Summary 2009 found that:
    -32% of all projects were successful, meaning delivered on time, on budget, with required features and functions
    -44% were challenged; these projects were late, over budget, and/or with less than the required features and functions
    -24% failed which was denoted by those projects that were canceled prior to completion or delivered and never used

    So, Kenneth, you brought a great point which is WBS at last. Especially as your post discussed, when a project is falling behind, referring to the work breakdown structure will quickly identify the major deliverables impacted by a failing work package.

    Statistics cited from article Managing Scope Creep in Project which is published on VILLANOVA UNIVERSITY website.

  5. Kenny….
    First off. Stop multi tasking! I know you like to push up 350 LBS at the gym, but jogging while blogging? Come on man!

    You bring up a lot of good points here. Each day I try to work towards small goals to push my progress along. However sometimes, stuff just comes up! These small daily deadlines that are needed NOW seem to take our time. Because of these impromptu projects, our long term goals get muddled. This is when it helps to have a daily, weekly, monthly plans that keep our overall actions in check. Good stuff and I enjoyed your article.

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