Good to Know – Suzanne Hesseltine


Smallest unit of work having four characteristics: (1) definite duration, (2) logic relationships with other activities in the project, (3) resource consumption, and (4) an associated cost.

Assumptions Any factors that you are assuming to be in place that will contribute to the successful outcome of the project.  assumptions
Deliverable A tangible or intangible object produced through project execution.  deliverable
Dependency The relationship that defines the order in which tasks are carried out.  dependency
Kick-Off The first meeting with the project team and the customer.  kick-off
Milestone A key event during the life of a project, usually completing project deliverables or other noteworthy achievement.  milestone
Schedule A listing of a project’s milestones, activities, and deliverables, usually with intended start and finish dates. Those items are often estimated by other information included in the project resource allocation, budget, task duration, and linkages of dependencies and planned events.  schedule
Scope The overall definition of what the project should achieve and a specific description of what the result should be. A major ingredient is the quality of the final product.  scope
Progress Identifies the work that has taken place since the last report. This includes the  completed scope, the accomplished work, incurred costs, and any significant milestone achievements.  progress


Defined by PMI as: “continuously improving and detailing a plan as more detailed and specific information and more accurate estimates become available as the project progresses, and thereby producing more accurate and complete plans that result from the successive iterations of the  planning process.”  progressive-elaboration
Baseline The value or condition against which all future measurements will be compared. A point of reference.  baseline
Budget Generally refers to a list of all planned expenses and revenues.  budget
Task In project management, an activity that needs to be accomplished within a defined period of time.  task

Work Breakdown Structure

A tool that defines a project and groups the project’s discrete work elements in a way that helps organize and define the total work scope of the project. It visually defines the scope into manageable chunks that a project team can understand, as each level of the work breakdown structure provides further definition and detail. The chunks can be scheduled, costed and have resources assigned to them.  wbs
Gantt Chart A type of bar chart that illustrates a project schedule. It illustrates the start and finish dates of the terminal elements and summary elements of a project.  gantt-chart
Issue A problem related to a project that is about to occur or is currently occurring. It must be resolved as soon as possible, otherwise it will have detrimental effects on the project.  issue
Requirements Requirements are descriptions of how a product or service should act, appear, or perform. Requirements generally refer to the features and functions of the deliverables you are building on your project. Requirements are considered to be a part of project scope; they form the detailed scope.  requirements
Scope Creep The uncontrolled growth of the project scope resulting from constant changes to requirements without consideration to the impact on resources or timescale.  scope-creep
Scrum An agile methodology that can be applied to nearly any project; however, this methodology is most commonly used in software development. The process is suited for projects with rapidly changing or highly emergent requirements. Each day, all team members should attend a daily, short Stand-Up meeting, where members share what they worked on the prior day, will work on that day, and identify any impediments to progress.  scrum
Parking Lot A place (chart or a whiteboard) to list topics that need to be discussed more in detail outside the regular Daily Stand-Up (Scrum).  parking-lot
Planning The psychological process of thinking about the activities required to create a desired goal on some scale.  planning
Stakeholder Anyone, internal or external to an organization that has an interest in a project or will be affected by its deliverables.  stakeholder
Status Describes the state of the project overall. For example,  it may indicate that you have accomplished 50 percent of the project work, spent 55 percent of the project funds, and are 20 months into a 36-month project.  status
Project  Objective Lower level statements that describe the specific, tangible products and deliverables that the project will deliver.  project-objective
Project Charter A statement of the scope, objectives, and participants in a project.  project-charter
SWOT A strategic planning tool used to evaluate the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats to a project. It involves specifying the objective of the project and identifying the internal and external factors that are favorable and unfavorable to achieving that objective.  SWOT
Rat hole During a Scrum meeting, only one person should be speaking at a time. They should have the floor, and only be interrupted when they’re getting off of topic. Oftentimes, when they do, someone will yell “Rat Hole” as a reminder to stay on topic.  rat-hole
Resources Everything needed to complete a project, but in particular people and money.  resources
Risk There may be potential external events that will have a negative impact on your project if they occur. They refer to the combined likelihood the event will occur and the impact on the project if the event does occur. If the combined likelihood of the event happening and impact to the project are both high, you should identify it as such and put a plan in place to manage it.  risk
Quality The standard of something as measured against other things of a similar kind; the degree of excellence of something.  quality
RACI A matrix of all the activities or decision making authorities undertaken in an organization set against all the people or roles. At each intersection of activity and role it is possible to assign somebody responsible, accountable, consulted or informed for that activity or decision.  RACI

Statement of Work

The bible for the work the project must produce. It is a key governance tool whether it is being used to direct work for a vendor or contractor, or used to direct the work internally. It must contain a description of all the work that is expected  SOW
Sponsor A senior management role that typically involves approving or supporting the allocation of resources for a venture, defining its goals and assessing the venture’s eventual success. Furthermore, s/he might also champion or advocate for the project to be adopted with other members of senior management within the business. At FSU, this person is typically the Division Vice Chancellor.  sponsor

Good to Know (Part I) – Created with Stupeflix.

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