Welcome to the Fiddler on the Project collaborative workspace!
Here we will share ideas about the upcoming Project Management book, "The Fiddler on the Project", a review of Project Management principles based on the story of The Fiddler on the Roof (play and movie). The book will be published in mid-2008.
There are 3 simple steps to this collaboration. And they're as easy as pie.
Step 1: Read our Prologue
Fiddler on the Project - Prologue
What are projects? Projects are all about change. If you didn�t want change, why would you be initiating a project? While operations are focused on the status quo, projects strive to improve our lot, gaining us more customers, or coming up with the means to delight our existing ones. Projects are initiated to do business more efficiently, to meet some kind of government or contracted requirement, or to venture into some new line of business altogether. In any case, we initiate these projects because we need something to be significantly different than it has been. If we don�t make the change, we may end up in a dangerous situation.
Yet, ironically while a project�s focus is change, the people who work on our projects and the organizations they�re from, as well as the customers and other stakeholders of the project- including the project manager themselves � are rooted in traditions. These traditions have served us well, sometimes for many generations. Lose sight of these traditions and the project manager � and the project itself � is not in tune with its environment, won�t likely satisfy the organization, the sponsor, the customer, and therefore will not bring about the change that was desired, and we may end up in a dangerous situation.
So, the project manager, the leader of these projects, has one foot on tradition and one foot on change. All along, he or she must balance between tradition and change while actively orchestrating the elements of the project, smoothly conducting, if you will, the �music� of the project while not losing their foothold on either, and � you guessed it, ending up in a dangerous situation.
Such is the Fiddler from Fiddler on the Roof. He balances on the peak of the roof, perched atop the house, effortlessly keeping his balance with one foot on either side of the peak while producing beautiful, enchanting music � a melody that is an inspiration for the story's main character, Tevya. The fiddler never fails � and he never falls.
We want to help you � as the Fiddler on your projects � to be able to keep your balance and play that tune, and to inspire the stakeholders of your projects. And, you know, we wouldn�t complain if you got a little inspired, yourself!
Rich Maltzman, PMP
Ranjit Biswas, PMP
<a href="http://www.yahoo.com">Yahoo! Rulez!</a>
Step 2: Take our survey - it's entertaining and so short it will be over before you start it. Well, almost. Click on the doohickey below. NOTE: The survey may deposit you "off-site" so remember to come back here and complete the last step!
Step 3: Please insert your ideas below.
Note: feel free to read this first chapter, "The Balancing Act: Project Management's Triple Constraint.
To do that, click on the "2" thingie below, just use your browser to return here!
Balancing on the roof...this is alot like balancing the demands of cost, scope, time, and customer requirements.
The importance of tradition...an analogy to the need for solid methodologies for PMs.
You can give examples from your experience...
You can contest the idea or support it...
If you have not seen the play or the movie - some snippets from the movie are here--> []
OK, enough already! You get the idea. Now, below, please: your ideas?
You can actually edit this Wiki itself, or go to our Writeboard, and log in with the password "tradition". If you choose this route, click on the "3" link right here-->. []
If instead you choose to edit the wiki itself, click Bluwiki's "Edit" icon (the one with a piece of paper and a pencil) above and put your ideas below the next horizontal line...
You can see crowdsourcing in action here--> [] http://www.cambrianhouse.com/0xdeadbeef/assets/promote/blog-widget-rectangle2.gif"
Balancing on the roof...to me a big part of the project manager's job is change management. I hope you discuss best practices in getting stakeholders who are not project team members (end users) to see the WIIFM (what's in it for me). --http://www.PMStudent.com
Sometimes books/fables focus on the right and only allude to the wrong, or vise-versa. I would prefer a more balanced approach with alternative characters/stories which focus strongly on examples of both. It would really get interesting if one character is not always right, but the two always balance each other out. For example, Number 1 succeeds in one area where Number 2 fails. Number 1 fails in a different area but Number 2 does a great job. --http://www.PMStudent.com
On the notion of "Best Practices" and "Requirements Gathering". We all toss around these terms without really stopping to consider that a "best" practice for one project may not be the "best" practice for another project. Clearly, in Fiddler, the "best" practices of the tsar were not the best for Anatevka's residents. The other term "Requirements Gathering" seems to imply that they (the requirements) are just laying around in plain sight to be gathered up and documented. In Fiddler when the requirements for finding the right match for Tevye's daughters seemed to be clearly spelled out in song, the actual requirements became a negotiation with each of the prospective suitors. -- Dennis Cochran