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Real_Case Analysis Initiative: an invitation to all members

edited May 2012 in Project Management

pm_hangout has been for me a safe harbor for public reflection on my own practice. I appreciate very much the hospitality that it offers and the open space for discussion that it makes available to all PMs. And I value as well the unique dynamism of our forum administrator @Harwinder and the active participation of members such as @Chandra and @hi2shrads, amongst others.

As a contribution to a greater diversification of the topics posted in this forum, centered up to now on issues mostly related to PMP® certification and PMI® standards, I propose the following initiative with a fraternal invitation to the participation of all members that may be interested.

The body of PM knowledge cannot be captured in a single book, no matter how authoritative or encyclopedic it may be. The body of PM knowledge resides in all sorts of publications on the matter, in forums, in position papers and, more than anywhere else, in the experience of PMs all over the world.

In this sense, I propose the creation in pm_hangout of a Repository of Real_Case Analyses that reflects on and makes widely available the experience of all members.

Real_Case Analysis could be seen, from this perspective, as an effective learning tool for Project Managers. Some of us might be willing to write and post a case for the commentary and scrutiny of our peers. Others, might want to analyze, comment and compare the published experiences with their own experience. The exchange might be in any case very rich and valuable for all.

Writing and exposing a case from our own experience is, we have to admit, not an easy task. I am willing, nevertheless, to give it a try and post a first case following certain rules that I have learned from the publication of other cases. Most of those rules have to do with protecting the privacy and good fame of third parties and with the use of a descriptive narrative of what happened more than an account of personal points of view about what should have taken place.

Prior to the posting of this invitation, I started to work on a Real_Case Analysis from my own experience. And I am willing to post such case in three by-weekly installments.

I therefore shall appreciate your comments and precisions to this post so I could have a measure of the level of interest that the Real_Case initiative may arouse. If there is enough interest, I would be ready to publish the first installment of my case right away and go from there. Please let me know. Thanks a lot.


  • correction: "And I am willing to post such case in three by-weekly installments" should have said "And I am willing to post such case in three bi-weekly installments". I apologize.

  • @raulcid - Good idea! I like it. Can't wait to see your first Real_Case..

    Chandrasekhar, PMP®

  • Dear @raulcid,

    It is my pleasure and privilege to have you on the forum. Though currently on vacation, I'm looking forward to your case study.


  • Dear @Harwinder and @Chandra:

    I appreciate your positive reactions to the Real_Case Initiative. Thank you.

    This is a preliminary list of questions that an author might consider in planning the first installment of a Real_Case Analysis presentation. I took these questions into consideration in planning mine. And as we progress in making the Real_Case Initiative concrete through the publication of several cases, this list may become more precise and complete:

    1. Tell us briefly about yourself: How did you become a Project Manager? What is your background? What are your current activities?

    2. Introduce the case: Why did you choose this particular case for publication? What made this case important to you? What are the aspects on which you want to focus your narrative and why? Was this a successfully closed case? What were the results?

    3. Tell us about the customer initial view of what needed to be done: What was the initial statement of intention on the part of the customer? What did you make of it? What was your initial impression about the feasibility of the project?

    4. Expand on your focus: What emerging issues did you spot at the beginning? What issues would permeate the entire work and set the tone for the case?

    5. Collect comments from colleagues and make the answers part of your presentation: Would you share the draft with colleagues previous to posting? Are there any questions at first reading whose answers would enrich the presentation? Do you have answers to those questions?

    I will publish as a separate post the first installment of my Real_Case Analysis today, including two comments from outside colleagues and my answers to them.

    I will look forward to your comments and to the comments of other forum members. Thanks a lot.

  • edited June 2012

    Dear @Harwinder and @Chandra:

    The Second Installment of the Real_Case Analysis No. 1 is entitled "Friendly Fire". I posted it today, and hope you would find it interesting.

    The second installment of a three-part case is the heart of the narrative. While the first installment establishes the initial scenario and reveals the preliminary focus of the case, the second installment deepens the insight on the main characters and lays out the problem space: where you are, where you want to end up, the issues in place, and the different courses of action available.

    I will look forward to your comments and to the comments of other forum members. Thanks a lot.

  • Thanks @raulcid for continuing this initiative. I'll try to take some time out this weekend to go through the two installments in detail.

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