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Project management of Planning

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Project planning is frequently cited as an important task of project management. What is meant by project planning? Who should develop plans for a project? What must a project manager plan for? What should the output of planning process be? How important is project planning for success of projects?

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Project Planning is planning for success, i.e. producing a way forward that everyone can agree is achievable. Project planning provides the route map to get you from where you are now, to where you want the project to end up. The destination is clearly spelled out, as is the best way of getting there. It may involve:

1. Planning assessment - reviewing your project planning environment or your existing plans.
2. Planning frameworks - starting you off with the structures required for efficient planning.
3. High-level planning - planning your project right to the end.
4. Detailed planning - fine detail planning up to a key deliverable.
5. Project monitoring - helping during the project to monitor progress against the plans.
6. Planning coaching - so you can plan unassisted in the future.

The project manager should be actively engaged in directing the planning process. The manager needs to use a number of strategic management tools like the organisation's SWOT. It is important to merge the Strengths with the Opportunities and the Threats with the Weaknesses when designing strategies. Obviously an organisation does not exist on its own in the environment, so a PEST (Political, Economic, Social, Technological) analysis needs to be ...

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