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Newsletter - Oct 2013

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PM Essence
Chapter News

- L.N. Prasad
PMI Bangalore India Chapter
Oct2013 chapnews The Chapter was busy doing the regular house keeping jobs related to PMPC 2013 closure, like compiling the feedback, compiling the wish tree feedback, closing the payment and receivables etc. Few Executive committee represented the Bangalore Chapter in the PMI National Conference at Gurgaon during 27-28 September 2018. The EC members also attended the Region 11 Meeting, which was held a day before the conference on Thursday, 26 September at the Leela Kempinski Gurgaon Hotel. 
This meeting allowed the members to learn and share the best practices from representatives from other Chapters of Region 11 which included all the Chapters in India, and Chapters from neighboring countries, including Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. We had one PM Footprints session in the month of September itself after the big PMPC event. On Sept 26, 2013.
A talk on “Understanding Metrics for Agile Teams” was given by Mr. Bimlesh Gundurao, CEO, Augai Solutions. On 10th Oct 2013, Mr Jitendra Kaushik, gave a presentation on “Transforming Team Performance” during the PM Footprints session. Both the sessions were very well attended and received good feedback from the participants. cn2
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PM Essence
Q. This is one of the best technique to transform customer needs (the voice of the customer [VOC]) into engineering characteristics (and appropriate test methods) for any product or service?

A. The Quality Function Deployment (QFD) is a comprehensive quality system approach that systematically links the needs of the customer with various business functions and organizational processes, such as marketing, design, quality, production, manufacturing, sales, etc., aligning the entire company toward achieving a common goal. In QFD, The understanding of the customer collected using multiple approaches (focus groups, surveys, interviews, field reports, customer specifications, etc.) are summarized in a product planning matrix or "house of quality". These matrices are used to translate higher level "what's" or needs into lower level "how's" - product requirements or technical characteristics to satisfy these needs.

[Source - Internet]

We like to hear what you think!!

Please complete the sentence below with your thoughts in 10-15 words and send them to. The best entry will win attractive goodies from PMI Bangalore India Chapter.

Running a project without a WBS is like............

Please provide your response by 24th October 2013

Chapter will select the best slogan and felicitate the winner during a Chapter event.

The Lighter Side of PM
lspm oct2013
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PM Essence

ssvraghavan         P.S. Ravindranath, PMP

P. S. Ravindranath also popularly known as PSR is presently Director at VM Ware and have been a Chapter volunteer and Project Management community member since 2001. He has been PMP certified professional since 2003, and had been the past Secretary and President of the Bangalore Chapter. He has served as an office bearer for past 9 years and is very passionate about volunteering for the Chapter.

He specializes in product engineering and has been a IT infrastructure management professional for most part of his career. He is a connoisseur of fountain pens, and also very passionate on collecting miniature rail road memorabilia.

Roughly how many hours per week did you spend?
Minimum 4-6 hrs in a Month.

What motivates you to volunteer for PMI ?
I learn, I support community too.

What have been the challenges for volunteering at the Chapter?
Challenges: Sometime Employment priority takes away volunteering quota. Family time overrides volunteering time on exceptions. Just the motivation to be part of the chapter keeps me going.

PMI Volunteering, Professional commitment, Personal commitment - How do you balance the three?

I have been keeping weekend time for Chapter work, week days are really a Push-Pull to find time & priority. I take up offline work with some flexibility.

Name any 1-2 best volunteering experience?
ACP Quest Content development & two pilot programs.

Tell us your hobbies, or things you are passionate about, other than volunteering
at PMI?
I collect fountain pens; miniature Rail road models, Chapter activity has reduced my time
with other Hobbies. PMI is becoming my social circle & hobby too.

What will be your message for your fellow volunteers?

Take Initiative, try it, it is very satisfying…

What is your thought on preferred recognition for volunteering?
Personal appreciation letter

P. S. Ravindranath , PMP
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PM Essence
Editor’s Note
SoumenDe Dear Friends,

Greetings from PMI Bangalore India Chapter!

It was very satisfying and fulfilling experience when we successfully delivered the PMPC 2013 on 12-14 Sep 2013 to our delegates, speakers and other dignitaries. Not to mention the September Essence was delivered with live coverage of PMPC on the 3rd day of the conference itself.

As you may realize, It was a culmination of several months of relentless efforts, methodical planning and successful execution. Passionate, dedicated volunteers, toiling hard, with a heady we-can-do-it attitude made the things happen for the conference. Related to their respective portfolio, they are carrying out a range of project management activities with abiding interest - be it identifying the risks, proposing mitigation plan for the identified risks and management of different stakeholders. In this process, they are communicating their passion and enthusiasm to everyone else. In short, it was nothing short of experiencing "project management in motion". I noticed, with not much surprise, that that the golden thread that tied all the volunteers to the PMPC objective was effective communication skills. Reflect on this for a moment. How do the best leaders motivate and inspire their people? The answer is through effective communication. How do the best organizations promote discipline, accountability and strategic alignment? Again, with effective communication. And, how do market leaders sell their products and services? With compelling ads and marketing campaigns- once again, by effective communication. It's not enough to speak clearly or write clearly; you have to make sure you're being heard and understood. Usually the volunteers who were more effective in his or her delivery were the ones who had gone into the vital details behind preparing and communicating the "message" they wanted to get across. Leverage volunteering opportunity at PMI Bangalore Chapter to give wings to your dream of becoming an effective leader, as they are often the ones who are also the first-rate communicators.
Thanks and Best Wishes,
Soumen De, PMP
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Editorial Board
Murali Santhanam, PMP
Raghavan S.S.V., PMP
Shikha Vaidh, PMP
Soumen De, PMP
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PM Essence

Operational Challenges in Acquiring and Developing the Team

- Arivazhagan Chokkappan, PMP, Infosys

While the Global delivery model emphasizes the distributed team across locations, many organizations have started adopting agile methodologies in their projects. The key success factor for agile development is the collocated, self-organized and multi skilled team. How can we ensure the success of agile projects with teams spread across multiple locations?

The customers are having challenging requirements. The talent market is very competitive and Organizations are finding it difficult to attract the right talents in time. Dependency on the 3rd party vendors for the talent fulfillment is increasing for the niche skills. In spite of having a large resource pool in the organizations, project managers are struggling to find the right talents for their projects. Not fulfilling the talent requirements on time in certain projects leads to termination or losing of the contract.

The focus of the organizations is now on leveraging support from near shore or from other countries where right talents are available at cheaper cost. The project manager has the challenge of managing the cultural differences between his own team located at multiple countries and between his team and his customer. Team has challenges in terms of understanding the team charter.

Social networking sites play a major role in connecting to people. The team that is distributed across locations joins together in those sites. Organization can make use of  the social networking concept in acquiring and developing the teams.

Leading the teams that are distributed across multiple geographical locations, culturally different and working in different time zones is turning out to be very challenging. According to Forrester by adopting the following five best practices we can overcome the challenges - staffing the team thoughtfully, building trust, communicating robustly, managing time zone differences, and using technology wisely.

A project manager has to spend quality time in identifying the right team members for the project. If the team selection is not properly done then the project is exposed to high risk and the project manager would be spending most of the time in resolving people issues.

Setting the right expectation is often the key to manage diverse team. In some cases, the expectation can be set during the college/university time itself. Some of my point of view on this is described below.

Education System – Point of View

It is high time that we need to look at tweaking the higher education slightly to make it completely relevant to the actual industry outside the university. Let's take IT industry as an example. Infrastructure management services are growing rapidly compared to Application development and maintenance. The curriculum in most of the universities revolves around software development and testing. An engineer comes out of the university with a mindset that he would be developing high end software applications. However in reality since the demand for Infrastructure services is huge, many engineers ultimately get in to infra services.

The education provided in the universities is different from the actual work. He or She wouldn't have much idea about the infrastructure services. This leads to potential employee dis-satisfaction, low productivity and project failures.

Universities should include infrastructure related subjects (e.g. Servers, Storage, Datacenters, Production Support models, etc…) in the curriculum to create the awareness. Should teach the industry and market trends to set the right expectations with the students. This would greatly reduce the efforts of a project manager in finding a right talent for the project also would help to increase the productivity to a great extent.

Few key challenges in identifying and acquiring the project team

1. Project Timelines
2. Skill set – Common skills Vs. Niche skills
3. Organizational policies
4. Dependency on the 3rd Party vendors
5. Market Conditions
6. Type of the project and Execution model
7. Organization's talent pool

Team Development

Once the project is appropriately staffed, the project manager needs to focus on the team development. Create a common platform for the team members to collaborate and increase the interaction between teams. Team should start trusting each other. Make them understand the objective and the goal of the project. Everyone in the team should realize the importance of the project activities assigned to them. All these are the responsibilities of a project manager however it is not easy always. There are few challenges that a project manager has to address effectively to build an efficient team.

In the current scenario most of the project teams are multi-disciplined, multi-cultural, distributed across multiple geographies and working in different time zones. All these factors make the team development process a little intricate.

Critical Success Factors for team development

Listing few of the critical success factors for developing a team

  • Appropriate team selection
  • Continuous training
  • Effective management of cultural and time zone differences
  • Improve the team networking and communications
  • Well defined career path
  • Effective collaboration between various departments of the organization
  • Better understanding of Organization's policies and procedures

There is no standard way of resolving an issue. Same resolution to an issue would not work all the time. The resolution techniques and styles would vary person to person and depending on the situation. The challenges and the best practices discussed in this paper are based on author's experience. It would give a lead to resolve similar issues however the resolution steps have to be taken based on the situation.