Book review: 101 Project Management Problems and How to Solve Them

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Cover of bookAMACOM does do good books, and 101 Project Management Problems and How to Solve Them: Practical Advice for Handling Real-World Project Challenges by Tom Kendrick, is no exception. It’s similar in concept to my own book, Project Management in the Real World, in that it provides practical advice for handling real-world project challenges.

With that in mind, it’s not a book to read cover to cover. You’d want to dip in and out as is relevant to you and your projects. The book is split into sections covering Initiation, Teamwork, Planning, Execution, Control, Tools and Closing. If you are having project problems in any particular project phase, you can flick to the relevant section.

Answering the question: “It depends”

When people ask, “What are the best practices for managing schedule changes?” the answer is, “it depends.” The question you then get is: “On what?”

Kendrick aims to answer this in his responses to 101 project management questions. He says that schedule change best practice depends on project scale, project priorities and the cause of the change.

Each of the short sections aims to provide a practical action plan to fix a particular problem. There’s a nice mix of tips, like “The strongest asset for building the needed confidence of your team as a novice project manager is generally your subject matter expertise.”

The introduction also has some extra hints and advice:

Escalate as a last resort, but never hesitate to do so when it is necessary. People will treat you as they treat them, so act accordingly. Good relationships and trust will make solving any problems easier – you really do get by with a little help from your friends.

It’s all practical, useful stuff. There’s nothing in depth here, but when you need a kick in the right direction to get yourself sorted when you are losing your confidence, this is a good book to turn to (after you’ve flicked through my own!).

About the author

Kendrick is a project management consultant and former project management executive for Hewlett-Packard and for Visa Inc. He is also the author of several other project management books.