Manage Your Project Portfolio: Increase Your Capacity and Finish More Projects (Pragmatic Programmers) Review

Manage Your Project Portfolio: Increase Your Capacity and Finish More Projects
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Part of my work involves coaching organisations in implementing and improving their portfolio management processes. I religiously buy and read most of what is published on the subject in English or French. More than often, I had to conclude that this book or article I just read, I could have written myself... and done then only a half-job doing so. Most of the literature on the subject, I have seen up to now, talked a lot about mathematical scoring models, tools and techniques, addressing mostly the mechanics of the process. It never addressed the soul of the process, the Humans, and how to deal with the main challenge of portfolio management in this area, namely: "How do we get a whole organisation to live a common vision and be truly aligned and willing to make it happen through project work". Most of the books, that have been published, focus on best practices and techniques and do not discuss behavioural aspects as a key issue.....up to now!

"Manage Your Project Portfolio: Increase Your Capacity and Finish More Projects" is Johanna Rothman's third book. Her first two, "Behind Closed Doors: Secrets of Great Management" and "Manage It: Your Guide to Modern, Pragmatic Project Management" are real gems and won prices for their quality and usefulness. I do not hesitate to say that "Manage It" is one of the best books around for giving practical advice to project managers. Her last book, as her two others, is full of real life examples and little case studies that supports the principles, concepts and techniques offered. "Manage Your Project Portfolio" is really a very complete "How-to" book on how to set up and manage your project portfolio. This book addresses human aspects very well, including a very nice chapter dedicated to collaboration work in a portfolio management context (chapter 6). The chapter on metrics and measurement is also straight to the point (Chapter 10). Ms Rothman's top-notch practical advices and examples are found all over the place up to the last page, with a great last chapter titled "Start Somewhere...But Start", one of the best things to do when it is time to go forward with taking charge of your portfolio of projects.

I do believe this book gives a more complete view of what is at stake when dealing with project portfolio management and will really help organisations to move forward faster with implementing and improving this key business issue of the 21st century, the Project Age. A very inspiring book!

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Product Description:

All of your projects and programs make up your portfolio.But how much time you actually spend on your projects, and how much time do you spend responding to emergencies?

This book will introduce you to different ways of ordering all of the projects you are working on now, and help you figure out how to staff those projects--even when you've run out of project teams to do the work.

Once you learn to manage your portfolio better, you'll avoid emergency "firedrills." The trick is adopting lean and agile approaches to projects, whether they are software projects, projects that include hardware, or projects that depend on chunks of functionality from other suppliers.

You may be accustomed to spending time in meetings where you still don't have the data you need to evaluate your projects. Here, with a few measures, you'll be able to quickly evaluate each project and come to a decision quickly.

You'll learn how to define your team's, group's, or department's mission with none of the buzzwords that normally accompany a mission statement. Armed with the work and the mission, you can make those decisions that define the true leaders in the organization.

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