Project Management

Construction Law, Contract Administration, Project Management

Why is Amicable Settlement a Part of Contractual Machinery?

By Dr. Chandana Jayalath
Disputes occur when parties fail to address conflicts of their interests as they often attempt to find solutions within the bounds of the contract where the rights and obligations are typically set out. Forgetting the fact that contracts are not ‘water proofed’, parties tend to limit their scope of thinking within the hard bound copies. The reality is that contracts do not operate in a vacuum. A contract that caters to all eventualities is indeed rare, so that parties will have to turn to another side, willingly or unwillingly, for a settlement. This is why negotiation has become a day to day phenomenon. …

PMP Hints, Project Management

Nine Tips for Improving Negotiation Skills

Professional salespeople love negotiation, but many soloists are more comfortable doing their job rather than negotiating about it. Here are nine tips for improving your negotiation skills.
As a proposal strategist and writer, my job is to get my clients shortlisted with the opportunity to negotiate for an important project or contract. During many hours spent burning the midnight oil together, clients become friends, and I usually end up caring about the outcome almost as much as they do.
By keeping tabs on the progress of some very long post-pitch negotiations and seeing the tactics employed by some exceptional salespeople, I have picked up some great tips for improving negotiation skills that will help you navigate this important, but nerve-wracking, part of the sales process. …

PMP Hints, Project Management

Manage Human Resources – Framework

Small Projects

Whenever a project manager has team members on the project, he needs to recognize the needs of managing human resources. However, these small projects will probably not need to worry too much with formal people management processes and techniques. First, if it is a small project the project manager does not have to acquire much staff (if any). The project team is most likely assigned by a functional (staffing) manager. There is not much opportunity to develop the team members since the project is probably short. There is also little opportunity to formally manage people other than making sure the team members know the work they are responsible for and making sure that the work is completed successfully. Similarly, a small project is normally not going to run into many people problems. …

PMP Hints, Project Management

Strive to Create High-Performance Teams

Have you ever been on a project team that had everything going right? The team members all got along; they all had the right skills; everyone worked hard and pulled together to get the project done.

Those are just some of the characteristics of a high-performing team. High-performing teams can sometimes form by themselves, perhaps even in spite of a manager that gets in the way. However, it is more typical that a manager helps a team become high-performing and facilitates them through a process that leads to the team becoming as effective and efficient as possible. …

PMP Hints, Project Management

Provide Meaningful Performance Feedback

The role of the project manager normally does not include providing formal performance reviews to team members. This is usually a responsibility of each employee’s functional manager. However, there is no question that a project manager does need to provide performance feedback to team members to let them know how they are doing and whether they are meeting performance expectations. This includes recognizing when team members meet their commitments and providing feedback to them when they are not meeting your expectations. …

PMP Hints, Project Management

Manage Quality – Techniques

Understand the Characteristics of Quality for Your Project

It is hard to define product or service quality at a high-level because the term “quality” is vague and means different things to different people. You must take the time to define the lower-level characteristics of quality for each specific service or deliverable. If you want to ensure that a service or product meets the client’s expectations of quality, you have to understand the underlying characteristics of quality. …

PMP Hints, Project Management

Techniques to Manage your Schedule

Don’t Manage by Percent Complete

Most project management scheduling tools have a field for entering the percentage complete for each activity. Before an activity starts, it is 0% complete. When it is finished, it is 100% complete. However, in between can be tricky. On the surface, if a team member were 20 hours into a 40 hour activity, you would say he is 50% complete. But is he? He may be close to done, or he may be only 10% done.

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