There are certainly few but very important elements to derive a successful project. It certainly lies with the management which tells how well a project will grow. Supposed we have to manage the creation of a cafe for an internet shop or to put up a mall in a suburban area or to build a house, what are the things we should consider?
According to the Basic Project Management Outline published in about.com, the four main key elements of project management are resources, time, money, and most importantly, scope. The resources pertain to the labor force and the materials and equipment needed to put up the project. The time refers to the schedule or the time range in order for the project to be fulfilled. It could be a timetable of events and activities like brainstorming stage and meeting session. It includes the planning and the execution of the project, pre-production period up to the production stage until it ends to the post-production period. Another essential thing to consider is the money because for without it, the project will not run. There is a need to have a sufficient budget to finish the project. Last but not the least is the scope of the project. As a matter of fact, it is the most important element because it tells the size and goals of the project.
In addition, we need to determine the quality of the project and the risk that it will possibly encounter in the duration of project-building or in end phase of the project. On building a new internet cafe, as a manager, I need to elaborate these elements and the governing and supporting details to manage the project well.
First is the scope of the project. The project should accomplish an internet shop that is cost-effective and at the same time caters the need of the students and workers in the area who need internet connection or link to the web. It should be a friendly project but income-generating. It needs not to be a large-scale project. The shop only needs a 15- person capacity space for desktop computers and for the customers who will be using the apparatus. A space of 3 feet in wide and in height for the cashier and the shop admin is also required.
Project leader: The person(s) who would have the main responsibility for the technical and administrative coordination of the project will solely reside upon my discretion. But I will be the one who will act as the manager of the project.
Another element to consider is the resources. Basically, the equipments needed are the desktops, internet connection and subscription, computer desks or computer dividers, a bunch of chairs limited to the number of computers, printers, ream of photo papers and bond papers. We would also like to include other office and school supplies for the design of the shop like paint and wall paper.
Of course, there is a need for people who will work for the establishment of the building. Three to five construction workers are enough. Other than that, I just need a cashier and extra admin to manage the shop if the manager is away.
Since we need to put up the project in terms of a small-scale pattern, here is the time and budget allotted for its completion.
Schedule and duration: Setting the time frame of this project has reflective effect in terms of fixing the times for different deliverables and reports. There is a need to arrange the duration of working schedule for the completion of the building, the delivery of the equipments, and the completion of people who will be managing the shop. Thus, the project must be carried out in accordance with the project management standards.
There is a time indication in each and every phase of the project, from the furnishing of the place up to the equipments. The project's total duration will also be indicated. Taken into consideration is the time required for staff recruitment and equipment purchases plus the possible constraints in fulfilling the timetable.
Budget: The budget should be in proportion with the resources needed which include the acceptance of laborers, delivery of materials, and the establishment of the building. These are but not limited to the estimate of "in kind" resources such as salaries, equipment, and others on a quarterly basis (a 4 month period). The monthly and yearly contributions and earnings are also indicated to suffice the cost. All budget items must are quoted in national currencies. In certain cases, projects can be managed by activity or milestones. Identify outputs and estimate costs by output which should also have firm delivery dates.
The budget will be divided to the following: personnel which include salaries, all remuneration, allowances, honoraria, and benefits that are paid to project staff, consultants which may include fees, travel, accommodation, living expenses, and support services hired directly by the consultant and billed to the project, equipment, research expenses, training, indirect costs, and among others.
The risk that may be encountered are the changes of season or weather that may hamper the construction of building, future problems that may be experienced from people, equipment, and system, and the consumption as well. Below are additional details that are vital to the success of the project:
Objectives: The General objective of the project is to seek knowledge with regards to establishing a new small-scale internet shop in town. It seeks to answer the following specific objectives:
- How do people work to manage small-scale projects?
- What equipment and materials do they use?
- How does the manager work for this kind of project?
Moreover, the project seeks an answer to a friendly project that also caters benefits to the manager.
Now, we should define the project’s environment though it is not necessary to worry about the environment when the objective of the management is to get the project completed within scope, cost and schedule mentioned above. Nevertheless, the project’s environment is in favor of the society in the sense that it does not have any political, cultural, and physical diversions. Moreover, the project wants to create an efficiency of the society by maintaining good manager-to-customer relationship. Aside from that, it takes into consideration the groups or the stakeholders that are involved in the project’s environment. Thus, the project is supported by the administrative personnel lead by the manager. The interests of the customer also matter. They are the blood of the project since the income will be derived from them. On the other hand, we should be in good terms to the group of suppliers who have the decision over interest of costs.
The general management of the project entails a two-way system. There will be an administrator who will distribute the information like rules and regulations to the laborer or hired people and customers. It’s a simple managerial system that includes people interaction, an employer-employee and employee-customer relationship.
Lastly, there is a need for strong command in interpersonal skills to distribute information and to solve future occurrences of conflicts inside the project’s system. It is in one’s communication skills that lie how well we communicate with other people and how well we behave or carry ourselves. The manager is expected to have a good interaction with people, both customers and suppliers. He is expected to listen to his people’s problems and suggestions. A bunch of outstanding leadership traits are also needed to manage the people well. There should be a win-win desire among every party involved.