Re: project management info

Subject: Re: project management info
From: Nancy Paisner <nancy -at- HI -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 29 May 1996 14:27:27 -0400

Jacob,

Your earlier post recommended using MacProject, as a far superior and
more intuitive tool than any PC tool. However, just because that tool
fits your learning and operational style, that doesn't make it
automatically the best tool for all people, including all your
students.

5 years ago, I started managing documentation projects. At the time we
had UNIX workstations and some Macs at the office, but no PCs. I had
used PCs before, but not Macs. I tried for weeks to work with
MacProject, even getting help from a Mac-ophile at the office who kept
telling me how simple it was. I didn't find it simple at all; I found
it impossible to figure out, as did a colleague who was in the same
situation of having to manage multi-person projects. Finally, in
desperation, we decided to get a PC and try out Microsoft Project
(then in version 2.0, as I remember). Within a couple of days after
its arrival, we had our first usable Gantt charts ready and a sense of
the tasks that needed to be combined. To both of us, MS Project was
intuitive where MacProject was arcane; MS Project helped us get our
jobs done where MacProject made them harder.

Now my colleague and I are both fairly technical, so if all your
students are non-technical, the analogy may not be applicable.
Nonetheless, it remains true that different people have different
learning/thinking styles, and work better with different tools. I
don't doubt that Mac tools work best for you, but unless you screen
your students to be sure they all *think like you*, it's not
necessarily true that Mac tools will be the best choice for all of
them.

my $.02


Nancy

----------------------------------------------------------------------
Nancy Paisner email: nancy -at- hi -dot- com
Hitachi Computer Products voice: (617) 890-0444
Waltham, MA. fax: (617) 890-4998
----------------------------------------------------------------------


> My job is to teach Project management and to teach them to handle tools
> which gets their jobs done quickly and efficiently. I have a very tight
> schedule of lectures and cannot afford totinker with things that do not
> work - whatever the real world situation. The usual position is that
> students are quite familiar with the PC platform and probably most of
> them have not even seen the Mac platform - so that when they see me
> working effortlessly with the Mac they get intrigued. I ask them to try
> the PC platform tools in their spare time - and by the time of the next
> lecture theey are ready to shify to the Mac for the project management
> work having being completely flumoxed by the lack of power in the PC
> platform projct management software that they have played around with.

> The Project Manager has to usually make time - not lose it and it would
> be foolish of me to teach them techniques that would grind their projects
> to a halt for want of an IS to sort out their computer problems. They can
> pick up a 4MB old Mac PowerBook 170 for $500 and do the best project manageme
>nt
> scheduling they want - so that is the real world for them. In fact the
> program that I ran on my MacPlus in 198,6 with 1 MB RAM, which you can
> pick up for $200 is good enough for even the most complex project
> management work even today having a far between GUI interface than any
> Windows software available today.

> Regards

> Jacob
> Oulu, Finland

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