Project Scope Creep and RACI

Hello project managers not pmps Welcome to Lesson number 10 of our advanced project management course. Today, we are going to talk about project scope control and change management. Actually, it’s another unplanned lesson like the one before Law Project risk management. Was that scope creep, right? You may call it a blatant example of scope creep. But I decided that it is important to talk about change control, because we have to figure out whether we have to stop change, or we have to accommodate change. Get yourself a coffee, or better still invite your team because learning and sharing go hand in hand. And in about 10 minutes, we will come to a conclusion whether we need change or not. And if we needed how to control plus, in addition, I’ll give you another tool that will help you to be in control of your project responsibilities all together. As you may recall, I am now a certified recovering project manager. And just a few years ago, I worked as a project manager and I had my own manager and Dave and I once had a performance review. So my manager at the time asked me his usual snarky manner. So what has been your major achievement in the last 12 months? And when I gave him my honest answer, he almost trophy sandwich, which put at risk, the very performance review, my major achievement as project manager was that all my projects were on time and on budget. He was a great leader, obviously. But he was not a rare one you can read more about guys like that, in the research are well known Stanford professor Bob Sutton, you can see this reference here. But the truth is that indeed, all my projects are war delivered on time and on budget. And there’s no magic about it. I just did my project management job diligently. And this is what I’m sharing with you today. Because a major part of the project management job is just to monitor and control your project. And by the way, the second tool that I will give you as a bonus today is about controlling your project and process right after this. So let’s face it today, and especially in the creative, high tech or startup environment, customer, extensive market changes are inevitable and they are rather desirable. And that’s why agile methodologies are becoming so popular. It is actually the ability to accommodate project changes and distinguish the appropriate ones what defines the winner in business and defines a good project manager. Even the project management book of knowledge describes scope creep as the uncontrollable expansion of product or project scope without the adjustment to time cost, and so on. So the scope creep occurs when the list of project features or deliverables expand compared to the original scope without the readjustment of budget and timeline. That happens primarily due to the following three main reasons. The work on the project started before a thorough analysis. And you remember, we talked about front loading projects and their advantages, that’s about it. Second reason is that there is no clear specification or definition of the project triangle. Again, we talked about that. And this is just a reminder that you have to start with a purpose and with a project triangle. And finally, customers external and internal, are trying to get extra value out of the project without preferably without paying for this, this is a cultural thing. Probably we’re not going to improve it today. But the other two will attempt to, but even if we know the three main reasons why scope creep happens, the reality is that change happens even in a mature project environment with very experienced and dedicated teams and experienced project managers because the environment is changing. And the role of the project manager is to accommodate the change whenever it is reasonable. So you do not really need to fight the change, you have to fight and control change. And that’s indeed when scope creep only then harms the business otherwise, it made me good. And there is a simple way to find the scope creep I have a cool tool to share with you. And again, it’s an open secret with an incredibly high return on investment because it costs you nothing and you know this tool the tool is called change request. I can hear, hear those eyes rolling this time, right? Because you may say that you have tried it before and it failed. Yes, because the pushback from all sides is inevitable. But that’s part of project management life. And I strongly recommend you to give it another try because you know, you miss 100% of the shots you do not take you know, so do introduce change control process in your project. Depending on the environment, the change control may include several steps, and quite a few participants all made practically consistent one project manager if the project is not big, but it always starts with a car change request. And based on the information provided in the car, the change control board or the project manager or the project manager and the sponsor, are able to assess the costs and benefits of every such change and bearing in mind the project, constraints and purpose. Remember that from lesson number five planning, they will take the official decision and depending on the level of impact, the car will be either approved or not approved by the seaboard or by the sponsor. On my projects, I limit the size of a change request form to one page, of course, and it will be containing Max 20 boxes of information. main rule, make it simple. And I’m not offering here any template you can look them up on the web, because the form will differ depending on the change on the project on the project scope, and on your management on the organization. And by all means you will have to set up the change control process and develop a change request form that will include all the minimum but necessary information that will allow the change. change control board if you have one or allow project manager or project manager and sponsor to figure out whether the change is valid, whether it adds value to the project, and whether we are going to include it in the project scope. For the project manager, the CM process is a very solid way to hedge the project team and yourself from the future complains that the project is running over budget and takes longer than planned. Not true. We have new changes already included in the scope. And we have updated our timeline and our budget. So we’re good as long as the changes bring value. But like with other one pagers in project management to the zero that I have already recommended to you the value of the CR four is more in the process around it, probably then in this one page itself and in its enforcement, because when the entire extended team, and that includes the sponsor and senior managers, and menu rank and file Gold Play, there’s when all of them realize that no change will be accepted unless it’s properly documented. And the proof you see on this stage already, you will probably get through the 50% of actually meaningless or useless or harmful changes for two reasons because a people like dreaming but they do not like explaining and really clarifying their idea. And B when you submit a change request you somewhat become responsible for this change, at least a little bit. And nobody wants to take an extra responsibility unless they’re dead sure that what they’re proposing makes sense. So change control and change request enforcement is actually one of the most significant manifestations of your value as project manager that you bring in the proach project and in your business. Because as you remember, project managers do not generate revenue, but they will generate a lot of value by seeing to that project. Use this project resources in the most effective and efficient way. And being in control of your project triangle is the best way to assure that if you work for a startup or for a small company, you will have a hard time implementing change management process. In this environment, everybody is doing everything and basically everybody’s doing their best to just keep the boat afloat. However, if you are planning to live a long and happy life in business, you need to at least define who is doing what on your team. And that’s why you need another document and another tool that a must have for any business which is larger than that mom and pop shop. The document is called racy chart. And it is the promise was for the day. Again, you must have seen it. But this is another document that we know but not necessarily use. It’s a simple document, you can download it from the net internet and adapt to your needs to your process or project. The four letter name is obviously an abbreviation of responsible, accountable, consulted and informed. And you can find very many versions of this document on the web. And you can look it up under the ram abbreviation, which is pretty clear responsibility assignment matrix. But you can also find many sophisticated names like dress ski, or even Cairo and Paris, look them up if you are curious, but don’t use them. You don’t need more than four roles. And whatever you do on your project, use the four letter acronym that you may have heard as well. Kiss, keep it simple, stupid. Let’s look at the rules here they are responsible are the ones who are actually doing the job accountable is the only single individual who is answerable for the correct and thorough completion of the task or for the deliverable consulted are usually subject matter experts with whom we communicate during the project. And finally informed those who need to be kept in the loop. That could be when your sponsor, usually it’s a one way communication, like with a change request just before same rule applies. Make it as small as possible and keep the amount of information there to the minimum. But of course, when you download it from the web, there are tons of templates there. Be careful because some of the templates amazingly are not correct. The thing is that you cannot have more than one accountable for a deliverable. And if you have several accountable and the same deliverable, chances are that you will never deliver, it is always a good idea to turn to class six when you need a good example. Here is one for raci chart, I found it in a very old movie, Pulp Fiction. Here you can see the full rules from the raci chart. The two guys rules and Vince are responsible, dreamy is consulted. And of course Mr. Winston wolf being the sole accountable for the cleanup of the boneheaded mistake. The fourth role informed is that of Marcellus, the probable sponsor of the whole project, he is informed, and that explains why he’s not in the picture. Tarantino who wrote the script must be a natural born manager, my sincere recommendation whether you have seen it or not before, watch the entire episode, if not the whole movie. There are quite a few small details that will impress you, really, if you are in management and leadership. And other than that, see you in a week for our wrap up meeting. Unless of course our change control board decides to add yet another additional but value added lesson to our advanced project management course. See you in a week. This is part of project managers not PMP is course to stay in the know subscribe to collective