Gren Gale wrote the book ‘Project Management for SMEs’. Having cartoons and starting quotes makes the book easy to read. The book is divided in five chapters.
A small introduction Chapter 1 introduces projects, explaining the need for a project manager and a case showing you have to use a form of project management.
Chapter 2, how to deliver projects, is the main part of the book. The author describes his own eight stage waterfall delivery process:
- Business Case
For each stage you get an IPO model (input, process/activities, output). The author explains his own best practices to be used in those stages.
The final part of this chapter focusses on agile versus waterfall. It gives pros and cons for both approaches. The book focusses on Scrum as the agile framework. I see Scrum as a delivery framework and not a project management framework. DSDM is mentioned but not explained and DSDM (AgilePM) is an example of an agile project management framework. The author embeds the agile sprints in his delivery framework as mini design/build/test steps and have an additional integration test before the implementation stage.
The third part focusses on project governance. You get an overview of all needed documents to manage a project as well as an overview of governance roles and responsibilities. I would not put the Project Owner in the same box as Senior Supplier. I would even keep it separate from the Senior User. I see the PO as the Change Authority positioned in one or more development teams. Next paragraphs focusses on Risk and issue management, change control and quality. The last paragraph emphasises on the benefits of portfolio management supported by a Project Office.
Chapter 4 explains the soft skills communication, people management and crisis management.
In the last chapter you get the author’s key points you need to be aware of, and you get all mentioned document layouts and a glossary.
According to the author he used PRINCE2 and the PMBoK (PMI) as a starting point. For me the question why the author creates a new project life cycle? One of his arguments is the fact that these methodologies are designed to manage huge programmes. I don’t agree, you can tailor PRINCE2 in such a way that it can be used for small projects too.
Also unclear why the author made the division between Business Case, Start-up, Analysis and Design. Confusing if you are familiar with PRINCE2. Now we get a PID as a result of the Start-up stage. I would say, start with Start-up and deliver an outline business case. In the next stage you perform the analysis and design and deliver a PID including a more detailed Business Case. It’s for small projects, so why four stages, keep it simple. Also having a first stage without a project manager and a project sponsor but defining the scope and a first project plan looks rather strange.
To buy: Project Management for SMEs