I spent two days at Project Challenge last month.
One of the presentations I managed to catch was entitled “Better planning makes better projects”, and was given by Paul Kidston and Simon Taylor of the Association for Project Management‘s (APM) Planning, Monitoring & Controls Specific Interest Group (PMCSIG). You might think that this title is basic common sense, but organisational experience shows that project plans by themselves are not generally a good predictor of either project end dates or overall projects costs. Having created the initial plan, effective controls need to be applied during the course of the project to ensure the plan remains a usable road map to project delivery. So there is plenty of opportunity for the project management function to be a whole lot better at it!
With this in mind, PMCSIG has taken a “back to basics” approach and written a book on planning and controls, couched in plain English to make it easy to use as possible. I will shortly be reading and reviewing the book, but in the meantime (to help you decide whether the book is worth a closer look) here are my key take-aways from the presentation (which was effectively a “taster” of the book):