David S. Kassel, Managing Public Service Projects: A Strategic Framework for Success in an Era of Downsized Government, Ch.2. David W. Wirick, Public-Sector Project Management: Meeting the Challenges and Achieving Results, Ch. 2, pp. 17-30. Please answer questions 1 through 7 clearly and succinctly, and post it on turnitin no later than Thursday, February 21, 2021. Question 8 requires an extended answer that can be posted directly on the Discussion Board forum no later than February 21. DO NOT EMAIL THE ESSAY. The content of Chapter 2 of each assignment complement each other. Kassel begins by stating that a “good plan” is important to keeping a project on “on time” and “on budget.” While there can be disagreement as to the values of time and budget as to the nature of a project, and the underlying concepts of project capacity (greater than funding), there are other factors that are in play in executing a project, i.e., relationships. Kassel provides a 5-point framework (model) for project managers to consider in managing lifecycles and maintaining clarity of purpose. The latter is to keep the project manager (principal) on track to carry out a project and confront challenges as to problems and the scope of work (“SOW”). Key elements of the framework are the identifying problems; selecting an agent; executing agreements; monitoring implementation; and maintaining and participating in the project after close-out. For each element of the framework, Kassel provides guidance in determining components of a “good plan”. In the selection of an agent, relationships among the stakeholders, project manager and consultants (contractors) are highlighted as important. There will be more on the role of agents later in the course. The purpose of monitoring and maintaining interest in post contract asset is a benefit to both the project manager and stakeholder. In Wirick, the project manager is alerted to project pitfalls and benefits. From a team’s failure to properly identify problems or needs in setting goals to misunderstanding users can lead to the lack of full or partial implementation. Wirick points out the importance of project management as a recognized academic and professional discipline. Included in the latter are project management maturity models; integrated technology; and risk analysis tools. N.B. As to two matters in the readings that are developed at this point are design-build projects and closing-out projects. Although not discussed in detail, design-build has been and continues as a popular public project management technique. As for closeouts, again the term “punch lists” is noted and is a very important tools in closing projects. These will be discussed later. SHORT ANSWER QUESTIONS Of the list below, which is not an element covered in Kassel’s five phase framework? Plan that identifies the problem Project manager contains maintenance of project assets Selection of the best agent Preparation of planning, evaluation and report charts Monitoring communications 2. Identify five (5) components of a good plan. 3. In allocating resources to a project, what type of financial planning arrangement would you advise a public body to avoid? 4. Define the term “agent” and describe the agent’s relationship to the project team. 5. Projects are not always successful and sometimes their memory fades. Consider an influence that may have led to a failed project. You can use your own judgment. 6. In your view, consider an important fact of the many suggested that would lead to a successful project. 7. Define a “risk analysis tool and how can this tool contribute to cost savings in a project? 8. ESSAY QUESTION: The Peace Corps: Public Project Management Success The case study is indicative of a public service project. The Peace Corps has been a continuous program for nearly 60 years without any adverse domestic or foreign issues. While previous attempts were made to establish a volunteer public service, government interest and support were lacking. Following the Foundation of Public Service Project Management prescriptions as described in the readings, the case study offers a picture of the successful creation of a public service project that overcame skeptics, stakeholder challenges and resource development. In the study, two (2) factors emerged as meaningful influences: values of public project management and critical success principles. Based on these factors, apply either project management values that can be attributed to the Peace Corps in the creation of the program or, in the alternative, how critical success factors (best management) contributed to the initiation of the program. Remember that this answer is publically posted and serves as a basis for discussion within the Discussion Board.
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