Starting a New Project

Focusing the Project Vision

Creating a New Project Plan

Entering Tasks

Sequencing and Organizing Tasks Organizing Tasks into an Outline .

.59 Setting Up Your Work Breakdown

62 Structure

77 Adding Supplementary Information

83 to Tasks

In the planning processes of a new project, you do a substantial amount of work to set the stage. You define the big picture and get stakeholder approval for the project, in terms of the product or service you're creating as well as the overall project scope.

After this vision is in place, you're ready to create your project blueprint—the project plan—using Microsoft Office Project 2003. You create a new project file and enter foundation information.

Then you begin to break down your project goals and objectives into the actual phases, milestones, and tasks that form the backbone of your project information system. You sequence the phases and tasks, and organize them into a hierarchy that maps to your project.

If your project or organization has more specialized or advanced requirements, you can use work breakdown structure codes that organize your task list by each deliverable.

You can add your supporting documentation, such as the vision or strategy document, to the project plan. Likewise, you can add other supplementary information such as notes or hyperlinks to individual tasks, milestones, and phases. All this information makes your project plan the central repository of all project information.

You might already have a clear picture in your mind of what your project is about and what it will be when it is complete. On the other hand, the project might still seem a little fuzzy, at least around the edges. It's not uncommon for other stakeholders to have a clear vision when you're not sure if you get it just yet.

And don't be surprised if one stakeholder's expectations seem clear enough, but another stakeholder's expectations sound entirely contradictory.

The challenge at this important starting point is to clearly define the project without ambiguity, so that everyone involved is talking about the same project, the same expectations, and the same results. Defining the vision clearly at the beginning prevents redirection (and the attendant wasted effort) in the middle of the project or disappointment at the end.

Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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