I just read the book The Art of PRINCE2 Survival by Colin Bentley. Colin was the lead mentor of the latest revision to the manual, released in June 2009.
The book is very easy to read and Colin included several humoristic drawings to accommodate the text.
It’s not a book to describe the whole PRINCE2 methodology but it gives you a pragmatic, common sense view on several topics related to the Organization, Risk and Issues, quality, Planning, and several documents including examples of very down to earth documents like a Product Brief, a Product Description, a Work Package and a Lessons Report.
When he describes a topic you will not get a list with bullet points but a readable story explaining the specific topic and several times including some one liners or quotes related to the topic. E.g. “If your project has more than one product, more than one version of a product and more than one person working on the project, then you are using configuration management. It’s just a question of how well you’re doing it.”
I really like the examples to simplify e.g. the work package into a one pager. Also his quote “Don’t write a progress report for a busy manager that takes longer to read than the time between his/her phone call – and that is one page.” is exactly what I want to achieve with my book PRINCE in practice, a practical approach to create project management documents; how to avoid bulky, inaccessible, standalone, and illegible documents.
Also his proposal to integrate the Issue Register, Issue Register and Issue Report into one problem report makes sense.
The first chapter of the book is a different one. It gives you an overview of the seven principles on which PRINCE2 is based including simple schemes to show which principles are supported by which processes. Something the official manual will not show you.
In my opinion a good book for those project managers who just passed their PRINCE2 exams and who are now struggling to put the methodology into practice and who are looking for some pragmatic advice.
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