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Published by Sandeep Bajracharya

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Published by: Sandeep Bajracharya on Jun 23, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Introducing ProjectCommunicationsManagement
10.01 Communications Planning10.02 Creating the Communications Plan10.03 Preparing for Information Distribution10.04 Reporting Project Performance10.05 Managing Project Stakeholders
Two-Minute Drill
Self Test
Chapter 10: Introducing Project Communications Management
hat’s the most important skill a project manager has?
Communication.Project managers spend about 90 percent of their time communicating. Thinkabout it: meetings, phone calls, memos, e-mails, reports, presentations—the list goeson and on. Project managers spend the bulk of their day communicating news, ideas,and knowledge. They are communicators.Project communications management centers on determining who needs whatinformation and when—and then producing a plan to provide that needed information.Project communications management includes generating, collecting, disseminating, andstoring communication. Successful projects require successful communication—thus,communication is the key link between people, ideas, and information.Project communications management includes four processes, which may overlapeach other and other knowledge areas. The four processes include the following:
Communication planning
The project manager needs to identify thestakeholders and their communication needs and determine how to fulfilltheir requirements.
Information distribution
The project manager needs to get the correctinformation on the correct schedule to the appropriate stakeholders.
Performance reporting
The project manager relies on EVM and otherperformance measurement to create status reports, measure performance, andforecast project conditions.
Managing stakeholders
Stakeholder management isn’t easy, but it’s vital toa project’s success. As the project moves forward, the project manager needsto communicate project successes and setbacks—and resolve issues withstakeholders.
Communications Planning
Because project managers spend so much of their time communicating, it’s essentialfor them to provide adequate planning for communication. Such planning focuseson who needs what information and when they need it. A project manager must
Communications Planning
identify the stakeholders’ requirements for communication, determine whatinformation is actually needed, and then plan to deliver the needed informationon a preset schedule or based on project conditions.Communications planning is typically completed early in the project. As part of this planning, the modality of the communications is documented. Some stakeholdersmay prefer a hard copy document rather than an e-mail. Later in the project, theseneeds can change. Throughout the project, the needs of the stakeholders, the type of information requested, and the modality of the information should be reviewed foraccuracy—and updated if needed.
Leveraging Project Inputs
Project managers should first consider their enterprise environmental factors whenplanning project communications. As a reminder, the following are the basicenterprise environmental factors that need to be considered for communicationsplanning:
Organizational culture and structure
Relevant standards and regulations
Organizational infrastructure
Human resources
Marketplace conditions
Risk tolerances
Project management information systemsThese factors can help the project management team determine what needs to becommunicated—and to whom. The project manager can also rely on organizationalprocess assets (covered in Chapter 4). The two that the project manager should paymost attention to during communications planning are lessons learned and historicalinformation. The project manager can use this proven information from the past tomake decisions about the present project.Of course, the project manager will rely on the project scope statement as partof communications planning. Why? Because the scope statement ensures thateveryone involved in the project understands the project’s goals and the scopestatement provides a common point of reference for all stakeholders. This willcome in handy when the project manager is managing the project stakeholders.

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