Learn how to collect lessons learned and document them to help improve the performance of future projects.
- [Voiceover] On every project, some things go well, and other things could've gone better. Don't let that experience go to waste. By identifying and documenting lessons learned, you focus on repeating your successes and improving on your less than stellar performance. In this video, I'll share with you several techniques to coax this crucial info out of your team members. Then, you document those lessons for the benefit of future projects. First, schedule time for regular lessons learned sessions.
Don't wait until the end of the project to ask about lessons learned. By then, your team members have already forgotten a lot of them. In your status meeting agendas, set aside time to ask team members for lessons learned, or schedule dedicated meetings for the topic every few weeks. Second, keep lessons learned sessions positive and productive. Start with what went right. Ask each person for a tip or technique that helped them in their work, such as what saved you the most time recently or what was the gnarliest challenge you solved and how did you do it? Then, progress to lessons from the problems people faced.
Pose questions about problems in a positive light. For example, what would you do differently next time? Ask team members to talk about themselves. That way, it's easier to prevent people from blaming others. Third, give people the opportunity to be open and honest. Try scheduling meetings without managers to see if people will share information more freely. Consider including an anonymous method for submitting lessons learned, such as a suggestion box.
This approach can be helpful for sensitive issues or when people are afraid to admit mistakes. Fourth, document lessons learned. For example, put them in your project notebook, but you can also set up a repository, such as a webpage with frequently asked questions, tips and tricks, or a knowledge base. That way, everyone in your company can learn what your project team already knows. By making lessons learned an important part of your process, you give your organization the opportunity to learn and grow with each new project.
Bonnie Biafore has always been fascinated by how things work and how to make things work better. In this course, she explains the fundamentals of project management, from defining the problem, establishing project goals and objectives, and building a project plan to managing team resources, meeting deadlines, and closing the project. Along the way, she provides tips for reporting on project performance, keeping a project on track, and gaining customer acceptance.
Lynda.com is a PMI Registered Education Provider. This course qualifies for professional development units (PDUs). To view the activity and PDU details for this course, click here.
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- Defining the components of a project
- What it takes to be a project manager
- Using project management software like Microsoft Project
- Managing project scope, budget, and schedule
- Managing project resources, including people
- Managing project risk
- Initiating a project
- Identifying and managing stakeholders
- Identifying requirements and deliverables
- Developing a project plan
- Building a project schedule
- Assigning resources to tasks
- Understanding the critical path
- Running the project
- Managing teams
- Monitoring performance
- Closing a project
Skill Level Beginner
Project Management Foundations: Communicationwith Doug Rose1h 47m Appropriate for all
Project Management Foundations: Budgetswith Bob McGannon1h 11m Appropriate for all
1. Getting to Know Project Management
2. Exploring Project Management Knowledge Areas
3. First Things First
How to develop requirements4m 19s
4. Developing a Project Plan
5. Building a Project Schedule
6. While You Run the Project
7. Working with Teams
8. Monitoring and Controlling Progress and Performance
9. Closing a Project
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