Every week I watch the TV programme ‘The Apprentice’ and every week the same disasters happen. Two project managers are appointed, they are called Project Managers but don’t seem to have any clue about what they are doing or how to work together as a team.
It is always a shambles, we all laugh at their stupidity and everybody thinks they could have done a better job - but it does make compelling TV watching and I love it!!
As I spent many years in the corporate world as a Project Manager, I find it very difficult to see any similarities between ‘The Apprentice’ Project Manager and the actual role of a real Project Manager. The Apprentice ones seem more like team leaders to me but hey ho that’s the title they want to use.
Who am I to object!
Is Project Management rocket science?
For the opposite of ‘The Apprentice’, if you Google ‘Project Management’. You will get a very complicated, complex view of methodologies, templates, processes, skills and experience – it makes your brain hurt! It makes mine hurt!
Which all must be completed in a certain order and involve lots of people and money. Woe betide you if you don’t follow this to the letter then your project will definitely fail.
There must be some middle ground?
If Project Management is such an exact science then how come the majority of projects still don’t complete on time, to budget and to specified quality?
There must be something in the middle between the utter shambles of ‘The Apprentice’ Project Managers and these complex overkill methodologies?
Otherwise how did the Pyramids get built, bridges suspended across huge gorges get constructed and hundreds of miles of canals dug out of the landscape? These all happened without a computer and complicated methodologies! Well, it might not have had a name but they were definitely doing some sort of large-scale organised effort.
I call this ‘Project Management Lite’; it’s the difference between being over complicated or doing nothing and winging it!
What is Project Management Lite?
Project Management Lite is about being organised, keeping it simple (stupid!!), using common sense and doing what works for you and your business.
It’s about doing what works and not doing what doesn’t work. Most of it you learn from knowledge and experience. Stuff that you can’t get in a book, stuff that you only get from actually managing projects.
Project Management ‘Lite’ will also work for small businesses
Think about it, as a small business owner do you have goals, a plan, activities, a to-do list, a restricted budget? Do you get stuff done, do you do activities that will get you towards your goals? Do you do what works, do you learn from your mistakes? Project management Lite will give you the techniques that will help you do all these tasks - but quicker, cheaper and with much less stress.
Your goals might be to grow your business, take your business to the next level, get more clients/customers, make more money!!! You’ll get there much faster and reap the rewards with these techniques.
Managing your business like a project
I use my past experience as a project manager in my work as a business mentor for small businesses because those skills, techniques and experience that I learned over 25 years are what works.
Managing your business like a project isn’t difficult but you need to be clear, organised and keep on track. Definitely don’t be like the project managers on ‘The Apprentice’!
If you want to know more about how to run your business like a project? Then download my FREE Project Management Top Tips , try them in your business and see how they help.
They are gathered over my many years of Project Management experience and really work if you want a successful business.
Let me know how you get on...
All blogs are written by Karen @ Project Complete.