Problem Tree

Problem Tree

Diagrams, PMD Pro, Project Management, Tools

Many people in the development sector waste money, time and resources by making this mistake.

They dive into working on their projects thinking they know what exactly to do to resolve a particular community related or environmental problem.

When we are doing something meaningful, (eg. helping our community) it is very easy to get emotionally attached to what we do and how we do it. This can often lead to big disappointments.

Have you experienced this?

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Leadership Matters: Building the conditions for sustainable organizational learning and impact

Leadership Matters: Building the conditions for sustainable organizational learning and impact

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This article was originally published on Humentum by Piers Bocock

I’m not sure how it happened: perhaps it’s just a factor of time and persistence; or maybe it’s the hints of gray near my temples. But suddenly I find myself in a place where people think I have a degree of wisdom to share — especially when I spend a lot of time talking about leadership. So let me start this piece by acknowledging that when I speak about leadership, I most often focus on those traits in others that I observe in conjunction with effective, happy, productive, creative and dynamic teams — mainly because they are characteristics to which I aspire.

At the same time, there are those who are put into positions where they have leadership responsibility for teams, for organizations, for contracts, and for agencies as a function. In my experience, it is the combination of these two — a formal leadership role paired with leadership characteristics — where we tend to see game-changing results.  And this is particularly true in the international aid and development sector. This topic — why and how leadership leads to better development results — was the focus of the panel I participated on at Humentum’s first Annual Conference, July 26-28. Continue reading “Leadership Matters: Building the conditions for sustainable organizational learning and impact”

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Risk Management – a risk itself

Risk Management – a risk itself

Development Sector, Project Management, Tools

This article was originally published by Trevor K Nelson.

We hear (and use) the terms Risk Identification and Risk Management to generally mean two distinct things. The identification of potential risks, and then after they’re identified, the management/mitigation to prevent those possibilities. But in reality they’re variations of the same process.

True. Risk Identification is the process of simply that – identifying potential risks to the project. And Risk Management is the process of mitigating against those potential risks.

But it doesn’t stop there. Risk Identification isn’t something that’s done a the beginning of the project, and then you shift to Risk Management. Risk identification is an ongoing process that should be done (at the very least) at the beginning of each new phase. Each new phase, each new work package, each new interaction with a vendor sets the stage for new potential risks. Continue reading “Risk Management – a risk itself”

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Why adding budgeting skills to your project toolkit is important

Why adding budgeting skills to your project toolkit is important

Project Management, Tools

This article was originally published on Humentum by Terry Lewis.

Successful project outcomes require careful management of resources, including the significant sums of money donated to NGOs. That is why everyone involved in project planning and implementation should sharpen up their budgeting skills. In this blog I’ll share six important reasons why we should all have budgeting skills in our toolkits.

 

  1. KEEPING YOUR EYES ON THE PRIZE

As the saying goes: If you don’t know where you are going, you are sure to end up somewhere else. A budget is a monetary translation of an activity plan. It helps us to achieve project objectives. A budget is a critical part of the project planning and accountability process: it enables us to put a cost on every planned activity, and to keep track of progress to make sure we are achieving goals.

 

  1. WINNING MORE FUNDS FROM DONORS

Continue reading “Why adding budgeting skills to your project toolkit is important”

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How, when and why remote project management works

How, when and why remote project management works

Project Management, Tools

This blog was originally published on APM.

Whether you currently have or allow remote work from project managers and project team members or not, there are likely times when the concept would have been beneficial. You may not have even seen it at the time, or if you are working remotely you may not have even considered it’s huge benefit at the time, but it’s there and that’s what I’d like to discuss here.

In my opinion – and from my experience – there are five key benefits and reasons that remote project management and virtual teams work for the organization. Getting everyone to see that is not always easy, but some of the best employers already see it and have implemented this type of company ==> employee relationship already.

Five key benefits:

Continue reading “How, when and why remote project management works”

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Using the ‘right’ tool for the job – That is Facilitation

Using the ‘right’ tool for the job – That is Facilitation

Tools

This blog was originally published on APMG.

Facilitators are key to any project, as they are trained in a range of tools and techniques and know where and when to best to use them!

Recently my daughter was trying to ‘bleed’ her radiators. Unfortunately, one of the radiators was close up to some new fittings and she couldn’t use the ‘key’. After some thought and searching through the toolbox she came across a wrench. With a little lateral thinking she was able to put something in the ‘keyhole’ and use the wrench to turn it. Hey presto out came the air! It was all about finding the right tool to tackle a difficult problem. Continue reading “Using the ‘right’ tool for the job – That is Facilitation”

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Raising the Bar on Benefits Management

Raising the Bar on Benefits Management

Tools

Let’s be realistic – benefits don’t just happen; benefits don’t just get realized by themselves. In fact, benefits from programs and projects are often not realized unless they and the required business changes are proactively managed during and typically post-initiative closure.

We have all seen it, the dilemma when a program or project is closed out: resources, decision makers and funding are all disbanded, but the benefits are not yet realized. Benefits take time, money and resourcing to be realized. But whose role is it? The project manager is onto the next project, other resources are consumed elsewhere and senior management’s attention is focused on the next challenge.

So yes, we need to get better at understanding and managing benefits, regardless of size or type of organisation. It isn’t about finger pointing but rather recognizing that benefits management is an integral element of strategy, portfolio, program and project management. To be successful it needs to be incorporated throughout the business change lifecycle.

5 tips to embarking on benefits management Continue reading “Raising the Bar on Benefits Management”

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