Wednesday, 26 April 2006

Into the frying pan - My first 'major' project - part 3

A couple of weeks into the project I was told by the board that I was to use PrInCE2 Lite methodology to manage the project - and they wanted a PID. PrInCE2? A PID? What's are they when they're at home? I made haste to the office of our resident qualified practitioner who thankfully took pity on my ignorance and walked me towards the light.

A few hours later I emerged with a seriously high-level overview of Prince 2 (which I now knew was yet another wonderful acronym - PRojects IN Controlled Environments) and some standard templates all prepared to write the PID (i.e. Project Initiation Document a.k.a. PDS - Project Definition Statement).

When I say seriously high level I mean that I came out knowing what SU, IP, DP, CS, MP, SB, CP, and PL stood for and a rough idea of what was needed in each - and I mean rough! For those of you not familiar with Prince 2 it is pretty hefty and not something that can be learnt just like that. I am not qualified and rather keen to attend a course so I can get my head around it all!

Anyhow, once I delved into the template for the Project Initiation Document I cringed. There were yet more terms I didn't know, and sections that needed answers that I didn't yet have.

Thankfully you need not scour the web for such definitions as I have 2 links to recommend that will make quite the difference. The first is the Glossary of Terms (9 page PDF for download). The second is not exclusively Prince 2 but a truly excellent resource - Wideman Comparative Glossary of Project Management Terms v3.1.

In the next part of this saga, I will talk about the stakeholders and how I got their input (and in some cases how I failed to do so!).


Anonymous said...

Hi Maz here again!

Nice to hear you have found Prince2 - lovely stuff. I don't know it too well myself but have used bits'n'pieces.

Funnily enough - I recently created a PID and took it to the board. I laso have a risk register, a requirements doc and a Gantt Chart. The surprise on my manager's face!

I have done a project similar to this before when I worked in Local Gov - but I don't think my current manager realised just how much experience I did have - showed him, right?!!?

Well I'll be back to check how you get on and take some useful tips ...


Maz (

Ray Valentine said...


I am on completely the opposite end of the spectrum. I am struggling with an organization that avoids process improvements like the plague.

We go through project managers about every 90 days, it seems. I am on a mission to overcome these obstacles and work very hard at implementing micro processes that become the standard and them build on them.

I manage the support group for a call center company, we support 6,000+ users in the US, Canada, India, and the Philippines. Unfortunately I report up through the Infrastructure Engineering group which puts me at odds with my boss over things like change managment, and project managment.

In order to keep my sanity, I have built a web page, and blog also to deal with small business and IT management.

I have found your posts on the ITIL forum very helpful.

Thanks for sharing you experience.


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