Wednesday, February 27, 2008

#7 The Scoop on Scope

Last week in class Dr. Ball discussed the importance of scoping a project and the necessity of tasks, resources, and due dates in order to put the arms around the project’s depth and breadth. I think scope is especially important when approaching technology as there are confined areas within the software or hardware that pose limitations within any project. It allows expectations to be aligned by all parties involved. In addition, technology offers endless possibilities that may need defined operational, cost, and time guidelines.

As I was pondering this cooking analogy, I consider similar questions as I begin the planning phase for an upcoming party. A milestone party is somewhat like a project in that it is temporary with a definitive beginning and an end. The duration and extent of planning revolves around essential questions such as the number of guests, the magnitude of who will be involved, the expense, and the breakdown of tasks and time frames. These factors impact food planning and preparation in order to determine what food will be purchased or made. The invitation also phrases the scope of the party with pertinent information. When there are organized and coordinated processes of steps, the final event becomes less daunting.

However, with all projects come unknowns and unforeseen difficulties. This is also noted in Chapter 2 of The Project Management Context, “Because projects are unique undertakings, they involve a degree of uncertainty” (p.11). Technology isn’t reliable and often breaks during critical moments. For instance, during our last class I was excited to participate with my laptop and to show my teammates my personal wiki. I was experimenting with creating and editing pages with pictures and adding links. Although I merely had basic entries, I was thrilled at the ease of maneuvering and navigating through a wiki. However, despite numerous attempts, my computer would not turn on and in my frustration; I wanted to throw my laptop out the IPFW window. This reinforces the value of having a well-developed plan in advance that takes time delays into consideration. Scope’s alignment creates security, encourages a favorable outcome, and leaves a lasting impression of the project (or party).

No comments: