Project Management

The Gold Standard Rules for Planning

Everyone has been involved in the process of planning something, whether a big-scale occasion like a product launch ceremony or something small like a birthday party. Having excellent event management planning skills is vital for any successful event or project, as things don’t happen in order themselves. For many people, even when they sit down and plan things out, certain things can still get screwed up. As such, learning the rules of planning effectively is as important and basic as learning how to count numbers correctly. In writing for the Association for Project Management, Vince Hines offers a few “golden” rules in order to be a good planner.

Have a specific scope

You don’t want to allow scope creep, panic, and watch things get out of hand. Having a proper scope helps you to control the situation, anticipate changes or unexpected incidents, and stay within the objectives. You can define the scope of your work based on the maximum budget you are willing to spend, the size of the work, the number of people involved, the time, location, and program if possible. Without these bullet points, your plan will be unclear and it’s harder to go through the next steps.

Create a master plan

After determining the scope of your work, you now need some sticky notes. Hines suggests to not start with a to-do list, but instead to “take the defined work and build a plan using sticky notes (one for each task) that covers the whole lifecycle.” Put these in order based on logical relationships, add hours expected to complete each task, and assign team members to be in charge of it. While it is good to be detailed and descriptive, don’t go overboard. You don’t have to say every tiny element of your project, but let your team be proactive and decide on their tasks.

Keep an eye on the process

Evaluate every stage of the whole planning process. You don’t just measure success based on the number of team members completing their tasks or the amount of money spent on a project. Evaluation helps you check the progress, catch up with your team efforts, and react if things are falling behind. Don’t wait until the end of the project—you may have to swim against the current and try to figure things out from the beginning.

If you follow these rules, you have every reason to be confident in yourself now. After many late nights of hard work, lots of planning meetings and many pots of coffee, your plan is ready to get off the ground. Bravo! You can view the original post here:

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