The Principles of Project Management (SitePoint: Project Management) Paperback – Mar 23 2008
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I really appreciated the checklists, examples, and warning notes; I've littered the book with post-it notes reminding me of things to do, or try, or at least ask questions about. For those managing actual teams, the advice on work styles and issue tracking seems quite useful.
I will quibble with the stand-up meeting suggestion, though. Stand-up meetings are harder than they sound, and require the same kind of focused facilitation as any other meeting.
One minor annoyance: at least two or three of the project phases are described as "most important" in the opening paragraphs of the related chapters. The writing also has a feel to it which I assume is either British or South African -- there isn't anything incomprehensible, but it does give an American a bit of a pause in places.
The section in Closing on handling a "total disconnect" was brief but encouraging, and as someone who's experienced a few, gave me some thoughts about how to handle future situations. The appendices have plenty of useful resources, including recaps of some of the tools mentioned in the main text.
Overall, I think it's a great introductory text, particularly for people who are moving from doing to managing, or who are working on larger projects by themselves. The tone is friendly, professional, and constantly encouraging, making for a slim volume of helpfulness.
The book provides a good, common sense approach to project management. Some of it may be overkill for smaller projects, and some of it may not quite cut it for really huge projects, but for anything inbetween it's a worthwhile resource.
I enjoyed Meri's relaxed style of writing (although she uses more exclamation point than one usually expects from a fully sane person :)). The way she shares her personal experience makes her advice all the more credible.
After reading the book, I felt like taking over a project I'm involved with at work, just to put it back on track again.
This book is no different.
Project Management is a difficult thing to do and do effectively. Managing schedules, leading teams, getting ideas to fruition all takes a lot of hard work and focus. To be a good project manager you have to wear all sort of different hats and it's a daunting task. Like salespeople, if you are a great project manager you can have a lot of success and a lot of times it's the kind of skills that can't be taught, but are ingrained inside you.
But you can make those skills stronger no matter what level project manager you are.
From Gantt charts to tables to delegation, estimates, and becoming an amateur psychologist working with your team, this book is one of the best inros to becoming an effective project manager. You will learn all the necessary skills to be successful and have fun while learning.
If you are an experienced PM you owe it to yourself to read this quick book and if you are newbie this should be required reading. Great content and ideas + a great design make for an outstanding effort and book!!
***** HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
The book is lively and engaging, and will be helpful to non-PM stakeholder on a small project. For someone who is interested in an intro to the software project management concepts, I'd recommend "Head First Software Development", and if you are up to the challenge of becoming a project manager on a larger project, read "Head First PMP".
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