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Project Management for Profit: A Failsafe Guide to Keeping Projects On Track and On Budget Hardcover – June 26, 2012

4.5 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“The book is a brief solid guide, with tips and insights readable for those on the go and distracted by a million things needed for their project. The book reads as it’s advertised, meant to help people who need a system but are not technically savvy at standard project management technique. It can fit a small team together in one locale or a team spread across the globe.” — Small Business Trends (smallbiztrends.com)

About the Author

Joe Knight is CFO and co-owner of Setpoint and co-owner and senior consultant with the Business Literacy Institute. He is coauthor of the popular and highly acclaimed book Financial Intelligence. Roger Thomas is vice president of operations and a project manager at Setpoint. Brad Angus is co-owner and CEO of Setpoint.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press (June 26, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1422144178
  • ISBN-13: 978-1422144176
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.8 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #535,782 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Overall, the authors provide a good system for organizing projects and forcing staff to forecast needed hours/materials/etc. This is something that is very important. However, there were several modifications that needed to be made if you aren't project managing something that needs to be physically built (like a roller-coaster). I was a little disappointed that no excel sheets with the book's formulas weren't provided as an example. The website does have a calculator, but not something that you can download and customize. It appears the authors may be building their own software to sell, which is fine, but an excel sheet would help readers implement the process.
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Format: Hardcover
This book is easy to read, rather entertaining, simple and to the point. This is of course good for a book aiming to be practical and applicable. To this extent, "Project Management for Profit" has achieved its goal.
Practitioners will probably enjoy Parts 2 and 3. It systematically lays out in simple terms what is already known by reasonable PMs.
Part 2 presents how to organize a reporting system indicating timely and accurately your project's current completion and spending status. The system introduced is simple, robust and down to earth.
Part 3 of the book introduces how to create documentation and to communicate around notions developed in Part 2. Again, this is presenting simple and practical tools.

So, will all Project Managers enjoy the book? Well, in my opinion, probably not!
Let's go back to Part 1.
The first part of the book presents as a revelation the necessity to have, in order to manage properly a project, a clear vision of current spending and current job completion. I wonder which PM needs this book to discover this truth! Even the most in-experienced PM or even a student with the most basic PM training should have gleaned this fact of life. Also presented as a big secret being disclosed, profit generated by a project is not directly proportional to the spending! Anyone who needed this book to discover that should have been removed long ago from any managerial position.
Likewise, in my views, the reporting system described is basic and can be easily developed without this book (if not already done by any PM who wants to keep visibility on his project). It is simple tracking and accounting. The communication system described in Part 3 is also relatively classical.
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Format: Hardcover
This book first caught my attention seeing an ad in Harvard Business Review, as it is coming from HBR press. With a friend of mine, also a PM, we often read books together and discuss, and he suggested this for the next round, based on the ads. There are so many books out there on PM, there are many on my shelf, too, I was curious about the title - why "for profit" ? All in all, although I expected a bit more after all the "fanfare" talk on the back cover, I am happy with our choice.

The style is friendly, and easily grabs attention. The authors use examples from their own practice, which makes the concepts fun to grasp. I found some of the chapters were an easy read, some others needed more work to put into practice the ideas shown. Each chapter has a "Takeaways" section in the end, which is a great help for reading.

If you have your own small company running in a project management way, this book can have value for you, especially in construction or IT. If you are a project manager in a big company, organized in a non-PM culture, probably this book is not for you, as you probably already have more complex systems for tracking, decision making, reporting. Also, I don't recommend this book for PM beginners, for whom I would rather recommend classical books in PM.

I liked:
+ Friendly style
+ Concepts presented make sense
+ Examples are from authors' experience

I didn't like:
- The "ideas" are spread over the book, I missed a compact summary in the end that I can revisit later
- I missed examples from other industries, continents, like pharma, oil, automotive; startups, R&D; Asia, Europe, Africa.

I give four stars, as the ideas need quite some effort to translate to my different industry and non-US context.
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Format: Hardcover
"Project Management for Profit" is a nice practical book, suited especially for those familiar with the project management techniques and wanting more specific and realistic advice. It is very cost-management oriented and as such can be more suitable for accountants/finance managers than for the engineering managers. Still, it adds value on multiple levels and is easy to read. All in all, an interesting alternative approach to the project management in a Harvard business case style.
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Format: Hardcover
Over the course of my career in the high technology sector I have observed numerous, complex projects that have run well past their due dates and budgeted costs, not to mention experiencing exponential scope creep. As a Prince II certified project manager, I've often felt the information I needed to manage projects effectively was either obfuscated or lagged so far behind the current situation as to render it of little real world value. Project Management for Profit is a revelation on how to structure an efficient process to manage a project based on transparent use of real time data. I can't wait to implement the principles and tools outlined in the book on my next project!
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