September Picks – Project Management for all levels

In recent months we have written about time management skills and tools to help you with your workload, so this month we thought we would look at recommended books to help those having to deal with project management, whether it be the main aspect of you job or just a small part of your role.

Our recommendations range from a beginners guide to those who are advanced and maybe just want a refresh or different perspective.

Project Management: Absolute Beginner’s Guide by Greg Horine

This book is a great read for anyone looking to master the tasks associated with project management and it’s lifecycle management. The book covers everything from the formation of an idea, the planning of the project through to completion and post-project management and its written in a clear which guides you through one step at a time.

The author shows the reader how to create and build a project plan and work breakdown structure. It shows you how to budget and create timelines enabling you to schedule your project and manage it in terms of both time and money, allowing you to control the deliverables. This great beginner’s guide also helps you to learn how to manage conflict and risks, ensure quality communication, work with stakeholders, be a great leader, and even more! It may be a lot to take in at once, but it is great to use as a guide at every stage of a new project.

This book will not only teach you how to quickly master the key skills of project management, it will also teach you how to keep projects on track.

 

Project Management For You: How to Turn Your Ideas Into Reality, Deliver On Your Promises and Get Things Done by Cesar Abeid

In Project Management for You, the author unlocks these tested and proven principles that allow big corporations like Apple and Google to make detailed promises of new products and services to their customer base months in advance, and still deliver it 100 percent of the time.

This is a book that you will struggle to put down until you have reached the end; then you will be raring to get started.

The author defines exactly what a project should mean and provides the specifics of project management; he shares personal experiences and examples together with all the steps required to reach their goal and complete the project.

This book is an easy read book, avoiding jargon and corporate lingo. It takes you through the steps of bringing an idea to reality, empowering you to dream big and have the confidence to turn those dreams into reality.

Whether you want to learn the efficacious principles used by companies and individuals around the world to bring new products and services to the market, or whether you want to learn the nuts and bolts of project management, Project Management for You will help you accomplish just that. And in the process, you will realize that life is a project, and you are the manager.

 

Strategic Project Management Made Simple: Practical Tools for Leaders and Teams by Terry Schmidt

In this book the author focuses on execution, taking a project from strategy to effective implementation, providing a detailed approach on how to apply the principles of learned theory into real projects. The principles detailed in the book can be applied across many industries.

This is the first book to couple a step-by-step process with an interactive thinking tool that takes a strategic approach to design projects and action initiatives. It builds a solid platform upon four critical questions that are vital for teams to intelligently answer in order to create their own strong, strategic foundation. These questions are:

  • What are we trying to accomplish and why?
  • How will we measure success?
  • What other conditions must exist?
  • How do we get there?

This new approach begins with clearly understanding the what and why of a project – comprehending the bigger picture goals that are often given only lip service or cursory reviews. The second and third questions clarify success measures and identify the risky assumptions that can later cause issues if not spotted early. The how questions – what are the activities, budgets, and schedules – comes last in our four-question system.

By contrast, most project approaches prematurely concentrate on the how without first adequately addressing the three other questions. These four questions guide readers into fleshing out a simple, yet sophisticated, mental workbench called “the Logical Framework” – a Systems Thinking paradigm that lays out one’s own project strategy in an easily accessible, interactive 4×4 matrix. The inclusion of memorable features and concepts (four critical questions, Log Frame matrix, If-then thinking, and Implementation Equation) make this book unique.

 

Project Management: A Systems Approach to Planning, Scheduling, and Controlling by Harold R. Kerzner

Kerzner is now on the eleventh edition of this brilliant resource. This book provides an exhaustive set of solutions to every possible scenario you might face in project management.

This book is considered the “bible” of project management and maintains the streamlined approach of the prior editions but moves the content even closer to PMI®’s Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK®). The new content has been added to this edition on measuring project management ROI, value to the organization and to customers, and much more.

This new edition features significant expansion, including more than three dozen entirely new sections and updates on process supporting; types of project closure; project sponsorship; and culture, teamwork, and trust. This comprehensive guide to the principles and practices of project management:

  • Offers new sections on added value, business intelligence, project governance, and much more
  • Provides twenty-five case studies covering a variety of industries, almost all of which are real-world situations drawn from the author’s practice
  • Includes 400 discussion questions and more than 125 multiple-choice questions

 

Brilliant Project Management: What the best project managers know, do, and say by Stephen Barker

This book is full of funny illustrations and real-life examples. It covers the basics of project management, but without the theory and really aimed at the more advanced project manager – useful for going back to when trying to refresh on the factors that lead to success.

Spiraling costs and missed deadlines are part of everyday life for many project managers – in fact, more projects fail than succeed! But project management doesn’t have to be this way. It is possible to manage projects that consistently meet deadlines and come in within budget. Brilliant Project Management shows you how. Drawing on over 30 years of experience, you’ll discover how to ensure your projects succeed every time. * Make a success of any project Deliver on your promises Save money, time and your sanity! It’s the ultimate guide to becoming a brilliant project manager.

Regardless of the methodology, you are trained in, you will find pragmatic ideas on the very grounds of project management; it’s a timeless piece that revises the basics – but with the wit of an experienced professional – and reminds you how to maintain success. While this may seem like a simple guide for a novice, it is a light-hearted overview for an advanced project manager – something you’ll keep on you as your all-time reference book.

 

We hope you enjoy this month’s choices, all of which have all been sourced from Amazon and are available to purchase to help you with your project management skills.