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Project Management For Dummies

Project Management For Dummies [Kindle Edition]

Stanley E. Portny
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Product Description

Product Description

The bestselling "bible" of project management

In today's time-crunched, cost-conscious global business environment, tight project deadlines and stringent expectations are the norm. Now with 25 percent new and updated content, Project Management For Dummies introduces you to the principles of successful project management and shows you how to motivate any team to gain maximum productivity.

You'll learn how to organize, estimate, and schedule projects efficiently and effectively. You'll also discover how to manage deliverables, issue changes, assess risks, maintain communications, and live up to expectations by making the most of the latest technology and software—and by avoiding common problems that can trip up even the best project managers.

  • The latest information on measuring project management ROI and value to the organization (and customers)
  • Managing Continuous Process Improvement
  • Examples of formats used for different aspects of project management
  • Managing distressed projects and managing multiple team projects
  • Hierarchical decomposition and how it can dramatically improve the effectiveness of project planning and control
  • The latest trend of embracing the use of social media to drive efficiency and improve socialization
  • New information on managing and resolving conflicts that occur during a project
  • Explanations of concepts tested in the PMP certification exam with study tips and practices to help you pass

Project Management For Dummies gives professionals like you everything you need to be successful project managers.

From the Back Cover

Learn to: Organize and schedule projects effectively and efficiently Assess risks, manage changes, and live up to expectations Plan for resources and stay within a budget Embrace social media to drive efficiency and improve connectivity Execute projects on time, on budget, and with maximum efficiency In today's time-crunched, cost-conscious global business environment, tight project deadlines and stringent expectations are the norm. So what does it take to succeed? This hands-on guide introduces you to the principles of project management and shows you how to put them to use so you can successfully manage a project from start to finish. And if you're studying for the Project Management Professional® certification exam, you can rest easy knowing that this book is aligned with the guide that's the basis for the exam. Project Management 101— find out how to identify the people who will play a role in your project, clearly define your project's proposed results, and determine your project's work The when and how — discover how to develop the project schedule, estimate the resources you need, and recognize and manage project risks Be a people person — grasp how to identify, organize, and deal with people who play a part in your project's success From start to finish — get the scoop on how to monitor, track, analyze, and report on your project's activities, and establish and maintain effective communications between you and all your project audiences Take it to the next level — get to know the technology available to help you plan, organize, and control your project Open the book and find: Help for defining your project's goals and expectations How to be a better project manager Guidelines for knowing your project's audience Tips for breaking your project work into manageable pieces The latest methods for determining and managing resources How to get your project back on track if it runs into problems Hints for providing effective leadership

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 3735 KB
  • Print Length: 408 pages
  • Publisher: For Dummies; 4 edition (9 April 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00B0H9S14
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #230,164 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 21 Dec 2014
By Shaimaa
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Excellent for beginners and intermediates.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.3 out of 5 stars  40 reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Geared to PMBOK 5: A useful quick ref for PMPs; slightly less useful for aspiring test-takers 12 Aug 2013
By Penumbra - Published on
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
If you're studying for the PMP exam, this new edition of "Project Management for Dummies" will clarify many of the concepts, without being "dumbed down" as much as the popular "Head First" book, which includes a huge amount of white space and overly large cartoon illustrations.

The Dummies book explains things in simplified terms, which means the language of this book and the language of PMI's PMBOK are different. However at the end of each chapter there is a table summarizing the topic, cross referencing that chapter with where to locate the analogous information in the 5th edition PMBOK, and stating PMI's terminology for what has just been reviewed. (You can see examples of the table format, "Relating This Chapter to the PMP Exam and PMBOK 5" in Amazon's "Look Inside This Book" preview.)

This is a good supplemental reference for anyone studying for their PMP certification. It allows the student to easily locate and review explanations of the information presented in the PMBOK, and includes helpful Quick Reference material for things that have to be memorized, such as formulas.

The Dummies book explains _concepts_ nicely, but if you're studying for the PMP exam you should still use at least one other reference / study guide specifically geared to test takers; the books by Rita Mulcahy, Andy Crowe, or Kim Heldman are considered the best. These study guides include more in-depth analysis, specific terminology, and practice test questions.

Using "Project Management for Dummies" plus the PMBOK would not have prepared me sufficiently to pass the exam. However, as someone who has already passed the PMP, I find this book is an excellent quick reference tool on Project Management.
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Let's be honest... 1 Aug 2013
By B. L. Ridenhour - Published on
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I generally try to keep my expectations low or at least reasonable with the "For Dummies" books. They are almost always quite useful, and at least almost always (I say almost, because I haven't read every single one they've ever printed) a great primer on whatever subject. This book is no exception.

I almost hate to give it a 5-star because there is A LOT of material out there on the subject, and there are clear cases of re-hash in here (not plagarism, just examples of drinking the PM Kool-Aid). I also am jaded, and don't particularly like Project Management, either as a task or a dicipline to study. The fact that I have to grudgingly admit that this is a good book turns 5-stars into 6-stars, if you know what I mean.

I won't go into topics or specifics, namely because that would both announce my opinion of what's important, and also be an incomplete list...I mean it's a book. I can't do any justice in a review, and since there are about 1,000 ways to sheppard a project on its way to completion, there's no sense critiquing one particular detail. In the end, you have to find your own way, and this book ain't a half-bad place to start building your ideas-pool. You have to work with people, and you depend on people, so the way to organize, motivate and get what you want from people will rely entirely on you as PM. This book will keep you from re-inventing the wheel so much, as it lays out some basic strategies/plans for success. You could manage any number of small projects using nothing more than the recipe(s) provided. PM is a surprising amount of work, so any streamlining helps.

BOILERPLATE: If you're going to teach a class on PM, you're probably beyond this book, and might even have philosophical differences regarding the finer points of this or that. If you're like me, and just trying to wear the PM hat when you have to, do a good job, and generally stay on top of your projects, get this book or one like it. I always thought the subject was "soft", but there are a lot of good and innovative ideas/how-to's in here that will basically let you leave work earlier than you would have without, and probably get better results from your projects. I'll never love the subject, but I have to say this is a good book...probably a little beyond "For Dummies".
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Feet to the Fire vs Fire In the Belly 22 Jun 2013
By Jersey Mike - Published on
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Don't you, like me, wish your managers would read just a part of this book – "overly optimistic or unrealistically short duration estimates can cause an activity to take longer than necessary – if people believe duration estimates are totally unrealistic, they'll stop trying to achieve them.".

I've seen the truth of that quote fulfilled more than once or twice. I've witnessed project leads faced with unrealistic timescales set up alibis and scapegoats as their first activity when starting on a new project.

I've also watched the best of breed project managers judge realistically and spark teams to be much more successful than they would be otherwise. My hat's off to those people. If you'd like to be one of them, I think this book will get you off to at least a better start than you could otherwise have.

Finally, if you'd like to view a case study of an entirely amazing management challenge, have a look at Ken Burn's riveting documentary about a highly improbable, yet magnificently successful project - Brooklyn Bridge. I think this approach to project management would have to be called "fire in the belly". And, it makes a great supplement to this book.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fair guide for preparing for PMP exam, but not enough. 28 May 2013
By Get What We Give - Published on
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The "for Dummies" books are sometimes very helpful and other times just plain worthless. The Project Management for Dummies book is one of those that leans more toward the middle/worthless area.

It's nice that the book attempts to tie in its content to the PMP and PMBOK 5. That is helpful. However, the overall content is not quite detailed enough to provide the reader with a real understanding of either of these exams.

The "for Dummies" series has, in my humble opinion, always been something of a "Cliff's Notes" for any and every topic. That being said, reading "Cliff's Notes" alone was never something that actually helped me when I was in school. They were helpful IF you had read the book and still were unsure about some of the content, but they were not helpful if you had not actually read the real book.

The same can be said for the "for Dummies" series of books. If you're having some difficulty in certain areas after having studied the actual materials, the "for Dummies" books may be able to put a different spin on the information for you - help you get your head around the content.

If you are relying on this book alone to help you pass the PMP examination, you are going to be sorely mistaken and terribly disappointed.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the few "for dummies" books that can serve as a reference 16 Jun 2013
By Charles Ashbacher - Published on
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
There are many fundamentals to the management of large projects, yet what is done can be summed up in a very short list.
1) Develop a detailed definition of what the project is, the problem(s) to be solved and what the solution will look like and do.
2) Perform a feasibility analysis to answer the build/not to build question.
3) Create a detailed plan for the creation of the project, including costs and a timeline for the sequence and relationships between the various components of the project. The outputs of this step are a plan and a budget.
4) Assign/hire the people that will work on the various components of the project.
5) Build the project.
6) Evaluate/tweak/proof the project until it is in a form that meets the specifications.
7) Perform a post-mortem analysis to determine what was done right and wrong and create lessons for future work.
While this list is very simple to state and is largely immune from argument, as is nearly always the case with large operations, the devil is in the details. It all starts with developing the detailed definition of the project, given the scope and significance it is easy to fall into a state of "analysis paralysis." There must be some entity with the power to state that the analysis is as done as it can be, it is time to move to the next step. In the rapidly shifting sands of modern business, there will always be some changes in the problems to be solved and the ways to solve them.
There is a lot of detailed analysis and negotiation in these steps and the opportunity for modification must be present in every step. One of the prime routes to failure is to have such a rigid system that there is no mechanism for in-process modification.
While there is significant difference between the failure rate of large projects based on the type, the overall rate of failure is approximately 37%. In IT projects the failure rate is over 66% and there is a genre of literature devoted to explaining and "solving" this problem.
There is no magic solution, the only way to reduce these percentages is to do the intelligent due diligence of being imaginatively thorough in all steps of the process. Portny sets down the principles of project management for each step of the process, noting the fundamental tactics to be followed as well as the most common pitfalls. Of the entire "for dummies" series, this is one that least fits that description, this book is for the detail-oriented person that is very intelligent and organized, yet able to adapt on the fly to the inevitability of changing goals.
If you are an aspiring manager or in need of a refreshment of your managerial skills, then this is a book that will serve you well. It is one of the few "for dummies" books that can serve as a reference after you read it for the first time, for it is more than a mere primer.
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