Project Smart ~ Exploring trends and developments in project management today

Calendar icon
Adobe PDF icon

Why You Need to Plan the Project Before Delegating Tasks

~ By Paul Naybour

Four colourful tags spelling the word plan

Once we have decided to proceed with a project the pressure is on the start work as soon as possible. However, a small effort in planning can make a huge difference to the ultimate success of the project. Follow our simple five step plan to ensure your project gets off to the best possible start.

Step 1: Define the Scope of the Project

The first and most important step is to define what is in scope for the project and perhaps even more importantly what is excluded from the scope. A practical approach is to brainstorm all the activities that need to be completed within the project. The challenge each of them are they in the scope or outside. Be very explicit about what is excluded from the scope of you projects. Some of these may be external dependencies that need to be captured.

Step 2: Group the Tasks Into Sensible Work Packages

To delegate tasks they need to be organised in to self contained work packages, which match the skills and capability of team members. Ideally each work package should have minimum dependency on other work package and be a chunk of work worth while completing with a clearly defined deliverable. Think hard about how the activities can be be best grouped make sure that they fit together well and nothing is left out.

Step 3: Build Commitment and Gain Ownership of the Work Packages

Delegation requires the work package owners to take on responsibility for the completion of the activities and the quality of the final product. This no only include a commitment to the completion of the work but also time scales in with the work will be completed. For each work package get agreement to the time and resources needed to complete the work.

Step 4: Identify the Dependencies Between Work Packages

For each package you will need to identify how it relies on the other packages in the project. Without this understanding then people will be unable to meet there commitments. These dependencies may not be clearly identified at the start of the project. Communication and commitment between work package managers will be needed to ensure that everyone has the information that they need to complete the project. You can use formal project management planning to help with this process, but even simple flagging of the dependencies and agreeable of target dates will help.

Step 5: Think About the Risks

Things are bound to go wrong during the project. If you can identify the potential risks in advance they you may be able to avoid them, or at least have a contingency plan ready. Discuss with the work package managers in advance what these risks might be and how they can be overcome.

The steps are best completed as part of a project planning start up workshop. This up front investment in delegation of project tasks can pay dividends during the completion of the project.


Paul Naybour is the Business Development Director for Parallel Project Training. He has many years experience facilitating project management workshops for organisations such as Siemens, Transport for London, Network Rail, Parsons Brinckerhoff, Halcrow, Microsoft and Disney to mention a few. If you have a project which needs an effective start up workshop get in touch with Parallel Project Training


Comments

Be the first to comment on this article.

Add a comment



(never displayed)



 
2000
Enter the second letter of the word horse.
Notify me of new comments via email.
Remember my form inputs on this computer.

10 Golden Rules for New Project Managers

Head filled with words, plan, think, strategy

Today dozens of new project managers will start their first project, a daunting prospect. Here are my tips for surviving life as a project manager.

The Art of Project Scheduling

Project plan and schedule

The art of project scheduling is based on experience and the more experience you have, the more accurate your schedule will be.

How to Build a High-Performance Project Team

Business people and bar graph going upwards

What makes a winning project team? Why do some teams achieve greatness while others struggle? Let's look at the factors present on winning project teams.

72 Project Management Tips

Hand holding a key with success written on the fob

Here are 72 project management tips designed to help you lead your projects with skill, authority and grace.

PROJECT SMART is the project management resource that helps managers at all levels improve their performance. We provide an important knowledge base for those involved in managing projects of all kinds. With weekly exclusive updates, we keep you in touch with the latest project management thinking.

WE ARE CONNECTED ~ Follow us on social media to get regular updates and opinion on what's happening in the world of project management.


Latest Comments

Duncan Haughey commented on…
Psychology for Project Managers
- Thu 22 October 5:10pm

Michael Fayamba commented on…
RACI Matrix
- Sun 18 October 6:34pm

Muhammed Ayub commented on…
Understanding the Project Management Triple Constraint
- Fri 9 October 8:54am

Latest tweets

General Project Management • Job opportunities as you get older https://t.co/wEbf7foa16 about 1 day ago

General Project Management • Re: Why is it important to develop a product-thinking mindset? https://t.co/jcA2QT4laM about 2 days ago

General Project Management • Why is it important to develop a product-thinking mindset? https://t.co/IUW782zrve about 2 days ago