- The aim of the book is to introduce a structure for retrospectives and to walk the reader through planning, designing and leading a retrospective, with activities and guidance on how to use them
- The book appears to be aimed at people who want to use retrospectives in their organizations, whether these organisations are currently using Agile techniques or not.
Continue reading “Agile Retrospectives: Making good teams great (Book Review)”
- This very popular book looks at the relationships between success, failure, and improvement.
- Drawing from approaches used by aviation and sport, it suggests ways to improve how we think about our experience to learn how to do things better.
- Unusually for a book review on this blog, this book is not aimed at project management professionals particularly, but falls more into the category of “general self help”. I reviewed it because so many of my project management professional friends told me that I should read it (including the PMO Flashmob Book Club night)!
Continue reading “Black Box Thinking: Marginal Gains and the Secrets of High Performance (Book Review)”
This book encourages project management professionals to reflect on and interpret their experiences, using (more or less familiar) bedtime stories as inspiration.
Continue reading “Bedtime Stories for Project Managers (Book Review)”
- The aim of this book is to provide a stakeholder-centred analysis of projects, and to explain which stakeholder identification, analysis, communication and engagement models are most relevant to different types of projects.
- Using case studies from around the world, it illustrates what goes wrong when stakeholders are not engaged successfully, and what lessons we can learn from these examples.
- The book is aimed at project professionals who find themselves involved in managing projects with stakeholders (so that’s just about all of them then!).
Continue reading “Stakeholder-led Project Management (Book Review)”
- This book is a good reference guide to Planning, Scheduling, Monitoring and Control, with most of the topics covered at introductory to intermediate level in relatively informal jargon-free language with plenty of helpful diagrams.
- The guide is aimed at students and practitioners, so I’m a bit puzzled why it begins with a chunky explanation of how projects are defined and the documents used. At 20 pages this section is too hefty for the completely uninitiated, but has nowhere near enough detail to be useful an already-practicing project manager (who would be better off referring to one of the BoKs or methodologies). I guess however that novice Project Planners may find it useful for context and orientation, and it signposts topics for further reading.
Continue reading “Scheduling, Monitoring & Control (Book Review)”
This book recommends that project practitioners should consciously view projects through multiple “lenses” or “filters” to gain different perspectives. This approach directs attention to project aspects that might not otherwise be considered, which will affect the action taken, and hence the results obtained.
Considerable repetition of the principles and case study content (mainly to make it easier to use for reference), and overlap between the images caused me to have several déjà vu moments in reading it straight through, but the approach should be useful to PMs (on projects and programmes) and PMOs (to challenge PMs on their view of projects, and to think about portfolios) at all career stages. Continue reading “Images of Projects (Book Review)”
by Melanie Franklin, IT Governance Publishing, Ely, 152 pages, £24.95 RRP (review copy provided free of charge by the author)
Pragmatic PMO Rating: ****
This book is intended as a practical guide to understanding and managing change that will benefit your business. It covers the differences between change management and project management, and how to integrate the two. Continue reading “Managing Business Transformation – a Practical Guide (Book Review)”
The stated aim of this book is to show the reader how to create and maintain a business-driven PMO, because PMOs that are driven by the needs of the business succeed, whereas PMOs that are driven by other motivations fail.
The book sets this out in a pattern of alternating chapters – one explaining a point from a theoretical or academic perspective, which is then supported by a shorter chapter or two demonstrating that point working in practice.
Rather than go through summarising each chapter, I thought it might be more helpful to list some interesting points or “Aha!” moments that I found in this book (and there were many). Continue reading “Business-driven PMO setup – Practical insights, techniques and case examples for ensuring success (Book Review)”
by Dux Raymond Sy, O’Reilly Media Inc, 232 pages, £25 RRP
Pragmatic PMO Rating: ****
This book is intended as a “how to” guide for setting up a Project Management Information System, aimed at the practising Project Manager (PM) or Project Management Office (PMO) Manager. In this it is completely successful. The book (safely in my view) assumes a reasonable level of familiarity with both standard office use of computers, and a reasonable level of familiarity with PM principles and techniques, taking this to build a PMIS, so often referred to in PM textbooks as an essential resource but rarely explained or explored in any depth.
Continue reading “SharePoint for Project Management – How to Create a Project Management Information System (PMIS) with SharePoint (Book Review)”
This book addresses a gap in the Project Management literature – how people and their behaviours contribute to project failure, and shows the reader how psychology can improve the chances of project success.
Continue reading “Project Psychology (Book Review)”