Project Management – Risk Planning:
Project management is the process of directing the work of a team to achieve all project objectives within given boundaries. This information is usually described in project documentation, created early in the development process. The main constraints are scope, time and budget. Project managers balance these constraints with risk, resources and quality.
Each project follows a cycle made up of four stages:
- Initiate: Starting a project can be very simple or very complex. The initiation of a project is an opportunity to establish components and boundaries, so that the size and shape of the project, and its outcomes, are all understood and agreed upon before work begins.
- Planning: Planning is an important second phase, as the time and energy spent planning will directly correlate to how well the project stays on schedule and on budget, and how well it achieves its goals.
- Execution: The heart of the project is ultimately the Make itself – the creation or implementation.
- Closing: The final phase of every project is closure. This is an opportunity to focus on the quality of the project deliverables and the efficiency of the team’s work and processes.
Organizations are realizing the benefits of project management skills and capabilities, and they need everyone to have this skill set, not just their official “project managers”. In fact, pretty much everyone runs projects from time to time – if you’ve ever organized bringing a group of your friends to the movies, buying tickets, choosing seats and buying snacks at time to see the previews – you managed a project.
Alternatives to stretching activities can include a deck of cards, paper cups, LEGOs, or any other type of non-interlocking blocks.
Much of project management is risk identification and planning, which is usually done during the planning phase but continues throughout the project life cycle. This involves considering the “worst case scenario” for each step or activity (depending on the scope of the project), then planning how to deny or deal with the risk.
When planning for risk, three related areas should be considered:
- Risk level: What is the probability of this happening? This can be characterized as a percentage or a ratio or as ‘high’, ‘medium’ and ‘low’. The level will help determine how many resources need to be devoted to avoiding a negative event.
- Impact area: What parts of the project could be affected by the negative event? Assessing the implications of a negative event is also helpful in determining the importance of avoiding it.
- Type of risk: The type of risk can impact the severity of the outcome if it occurs and will often help identify those risks, which may have low levels of risk but significant impacts on the project.
Using the letters shown, you will rate the risk level, risk area, and risk type for each deliverable in a project.
L = low
M = Medium
H = High
R = Resources
T = Timing
S = Range
Q = Quality
|Type of risk
L = What you learn
Q = The quality of the final product
P = Project processes
- Configure the Jenga game.
- Now consider the risks associated with the surface you have chosen to settle on. For example: if you place your Jenga tower on the carpet, it has a less stable base than if you put it on a solid surface like a tiled floor. Placing it on a table presents the risk of someone bumping into the table while playing and shoving the tower, instead of placing it on a counter. Placing it on the ground rather than an elevated surface increases the complexity of removing the blocks.
- Start playing the game. As you remove blocks and place them on top of the tower, be aware of risks to the structure, such as reduced stability, as blocks are removed in lower levels.
- Assess the risks associated with each move, including the risk of the tower collapsing until that risk occurs.
- Do the risks change if, instead of Jenga blocks, you use LEGO or paper cups? If you’re building a card tower, are the types of risks you need to consider different? Build a tower with different materials and evaluate each risk again.