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The Business Savvy Project Manager: Indispensable Knowledge and Skills for Success Hardcover – December 14, 2005
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From the Back Cover
Integrate the business needs and goals of your organization into every project decision you make
A well-managed project is a fundamental building block of business growth, and the project manager is the driver of that growth. The Business-Savvy Project Manager provides you with the concepts, principles, and tools you need to implement and lead projects that will consistently provide shareholders with superior return on investment.
This step-by-step guidebook, filled with examples of project management success and failure, shows you how to become an accomplished project leader who can:
- Identify the most essential initiatives that must be addressed in your firm, helping prevent the cost and waste of pursuing low-priority projects
- Propose, manage, and report on projects based on concerns that matter to your senior executives, from increasing cash flows to minimizing financial risk
- Structure and perform a convincing, project-specific financial analysis that details the amount of wealth generated, or net present value, of the project
The long-term success of an organization is based on the quality and execution of its projects. The Business-Savvy Project Manager walks you through the steps of a successful project, explaining what you must do to make each project successful from a business, as opposed to a technical, perspective.
Achieve full economic and operational success with each project
A project is much more than just a logistical exercise in staying on time and within budget. It is, in fact, a business imperative, a major financial investment with goals that must be successfully achieved if an enterprise is to remain competitively viable.
The Business-Savvy Project Manager is your guide to designing and managing projects that make meaningful, positive economic contributions to your organization. From the big-picture fundamentals of finance, accounting, and organizational management to focused techniques for designing effective projects, keeping them financially sound, and pulling long-term economic value from their results, this bottom line–driven book will supply you with the managerial knowledge and insights you need to:
- Prepare and present a compelling business case that convinces decision makers of the merits of committing company money to a project
- Apply risk management tools and techniques to the entire project life cycle, including incorporating risk analysis as a key component of project selection and oversight
- Create a cash flow chart that identifies and models the relevant cash inflows and outflows to assess your project’s financial strength
- Verify that projects integrate well with your organization’s overall project investment portfolio
- Conduct post-project audits that examine the actual results of projects after completion and indicate ways to improve the overall project process
At root, businesses are meant to produce positive cash flow for their investors, and projects are meant to help businesses achieve that financial objective. The problem is, many organizations lose sight of business goals, judging the success or failure of critical projects more on the technical aspects of staying within budgeted time and cost constraints, rather than on the real-world aspects of economic value provided.
The Business-Savvy Project Manager shows you how to combine the two ideas into a results-driven, innovative, and economically productive approach to managing and measuring each project, based on its success at achieving business goals. Whether you are a practicing project manager or an organizational manager charged with conceiving and designing projects, it will show you how to increase overall cash flow, and gain full economic value, from each project you pursue.
About the Author
Gary Heerkens is president of Management Solutions Group, which specializes in providing unique project management educational solutions and comprehensive organizational development support. A certified Project Management Professional (PMP), a Certified Project Manager (CPM), and a Certified Business Manager (CBM), Heerkens is a regular speaker at project management conferences around the world. He is an active member of the Project Management Institute and the International Association of Program and Project Management (IAPPM), and is author of the bestselling book Project Management (McGraw-Hill).
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Some key chapters are Cost Management in Organizations, Project Economics (three parts or chapters), Risk Management Decision Making and Business, Business Cases and Business Case Preparation. In addition, the glossary in the back is a nice tool with some good references.
Understanding this book will allow project managers and engineers to present strong business cases and speak more competently to financial managers and executives. Plus, you will be able to report out with cash flow numbers, how you improved the balance sheet and income statement, along with the impact on other critical metrics. This definitely will be a book that will be kept at arm's length and referred to many times. I recommend also "What the Best MBA's Know" by Peter Navarro.
is not an ordinary project management book, which in most cases are very similar to each other. 'The Business Savvy Project Manager' is probably the best practical guide I have read for managing organizational business on all levels: starting at projects and reaching the enterprise level.
What I especially like about 'The Business Savvy Project Manager' is the strong focus on portfolio management and project economics. While, the book on only describes the basics of discounted cash flow methodology, it provides practical guidelines for modeling project cash flows. Economic analysis and financial metrics are the foundations of successful project management and the book explains how to enable these approaches for
Another important area of project management, which is very close to my heart, is project decision analysis and risk management. The author explains sensitivity analysis, Monte Carlo simulations, decision tree analysis, and other risk and decision analysis methods that enable project managers to make better choices. How many times do senior managers ask us to write a business case and how many times so we wondering if we are doing it right? The Savvy Project Manager includes clear guidelines for preparing a project business case.
Finally, I'm a strong believer that project management is not only about soft skills, although it is very important. Project management implies strong understanding of economics, decision and risk analysis, metrics and quantitative analysis, and portfolio management. 'The Business Savvy Project Manager' will teach you how to apply these in an easy to grasp format.
Lev Virine, author of Project Decisions: The Art and Science
Dr. Paul D. Giammalvo, CDT, PMP, CCE, MScPM