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Rachel’s day was a combination of coping with work-related tasks and procrastinating. However, keeping in mind that she is a project manager, what seems as procrastination at first sight may be carrying out work functions. Therefore, except for several questionable moments, Rachel’s day was effective. The level of efficiency can be described as moderate because it was effective from the perspective of completed tasks and ineffective in view of planning work and time spent for completing tasks.
There are at least two reasons for coming to this conclusion. To begin with, Rachel gets distracted easily. Checking e-mail and voice messages, communicating with colleagues, spending some time on her own (listening to music and taking a walk) are just some of the examples of procrastination. Nevertheless, she is a project manager. From this perspective, completing sociocultural tasks is one of her functions. In this case, communicating with colleagues is one of the sociocultural tasks. Even though most of time was spent gossiping, it still enhances communication between team members and fosters trust in the workplace.
Speaking of e-mails and voice messages, they might have been sent by the customers. In this way, negotiating and meeting customer expectations are other sociocultural functions of a project manager (Larson and Clifford 15). On the other hand, Rachel spent the rest of the day working on the project and negotiating with colleagues on different aspects of her project as well as sharing the latest news with her team and senior management. From this perspective, she conducted both sociocultural (negotiating and leadership) and technological (preparing and reviewing reports, updating on the status of her projects and schedules, etc.) functions. To sum up, even though Rachel has not started her working day earlier like she planned to and stayed at work till late, functionally, her day was spent effectively.
Deliverables in the Project
The major deliverable of the project is a summer invitational soccer tournament. It is chosen as the central deliverable because the successful organization of the tournament is the most desirable outcome of the project. This major deliverable is inseparable from several smaller ones – subdeliverables. They are smaller-scale objectives of the project that help achieve the major outcome. In case of this tournament, the success in organizing it is connected to justice on the soccer field and active promotion of the event so that teams are motivated to participate, while young people are interested in visiting it. The subdeliverables involve more desired outcomes. To achieve the subdeliverables mentioned above, it is essential to hire professional referees for guaranteeing justice and attract local artists, as well as offer some souvenirs for visitors, to make the event attractive. In order to obtain a better understanding of the deliverables of the projects, developing a work breakdown structure (WBS) is advisable. WBS for the case under consideration is shown in figure 1 below.
There are some significant issues with the project under consideration. First and foremost, costs are higher than planned by the senior management. In addition, more time is needed for developing and designing the new laser printer. In order to cut the time, additional costs will be needed. At this point, being a project manager, it is critical to inform the senior management of the challenges identified during the estimations. It is imperative to keep in mind that estimations were necessary in order to determine whether the project is likely to become a success and worth investing in, i.e. whether it should be launched (Larson and Clifford 127). From this perspective, communicating with the senior management is a direct responsibility of a project manager regardless of the potential reaction to the news.
Reasons for Justifying a Decision
Once the findings are reported, the decision is to recommend outsourcing technology design. This decision can be explained by several major reasons. First of all, the company does not have enough funds for financing design by its specialists. Outsourcing may help cope with this challenge. In this case, there is an opportunity to decrease the costs so that they are even lower than planned. In addition, outsourcing design may help to reduce time needed for developing and introducing the new product so that company’s reputation is not jeopardized. Finally, outsourcing is another way to improve design due to the opportunity to collect new opinions on the project and ideas to improve the design and the product.
Still, it is essential to note that once the estimations are shared with senior management, it is essential to point to the human factor – the risks of errors in estimations (Larson and Clifford 128). In this case, the idea is to offer additional estimations of time and costs so that these risks are eliminated and the senior management is confident in the made decision.
Larson, Eric W., and Clifford F. Gray. Project Management: The Managerial Process. 5th ed., McGraw-Hill/Irwin, 2011.