One-Page Project Manager Training Videos

The Short videos clips below were originally available only to subscribers of My-OPPM online as a video supplement to the usual help button. Many have asked us to post them on our main website - so here they are. Each is 1 to 2 minutes in length. They introduce OPPM, go through the 12 Building Steps, and then conclude with the 5 Reporting Steps.

Also, each contains a few valuable "nuggets" on what we call "Seriously Simple Project Communication."


Introduction to OPPM as a Communication Tool

Research by Andy Crowe found that communication was the main differentiator separating the top 2% of project managers for the rest. This clip will share his findings - we call them the Alpha 4.

Step 1

This information will go at the top of your OPPM. It includes the project's name, project leader, project objective, and the current date (updated automatically). A best practice is to complete the header together with the executive assigning the project. It is a good time to reach out for mutual understanding on the cost, schedule, scope, and quality priorities which will help guide you in making trade off decisions throughout the project.

Step 2

These are the people who will manage the major components of the project. As you know, your success, to a large degree, depends on them. They are the owners - they may be direct reports, colleagues, or even consultants. It's hard to overemphasize the importance of ownership. When one's "name is on the line," they become engaged in realistic expectations, and are often personally committed to exceeding those published milestones. Look for capacity, competence, and commitment, together with a variety of viewpoints. MyOPPM provides for up to 6 owners.

Step 3

Think of the Matrix as the focal point, the hub or compass of the project as expressed on the OPPM. It links all of your project's essential elements and communicates them to your readers. The Matrix flows naturally out of the creation of the entire OPPM. During this step, as project manager, you will want to present your team with an overview of the project, discuss how to handle the project, and go thoroughly through the pieces of the OPPM format. As project manager, you are also project mentor and teacher. Reviewing the matrix provides the perfect time to kick off the project with your team, discuss objectives and priorities, and launch the teaching process, which will continue throughout the project, as you tutor project management fundamentals, specific skills required for this project, and any required learnings provided in the PMBOK (Project Management Body of Knowledge).

Step 4

Now, with your team in place, you and your team start to break down the project into sub-objectives of the project's overall objective as shown in the Header. These are shown on the lower left-hand corner of the OPPM. MyOPPMâ„¢ provides for up to 4 sup-objectives. These simple, easily understood statements reflect the major accomplishments you want as project deliverables. A best practice is to write them SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-bound).

Step 5

MyOPPM provides for up to 30 tasks. This is suitable for all the major tasks of a relatively small project. Larger projects, where the WBS (Work Breakdown Structure) is extensive, or where the full project plan is contained in Microsoft Project, Oracle's Primavera, or some other comprehensive project software, OPPM tasks will be summarized into the 30 or so high level summary tasks. Your OPPM is designed to be sufficient to manage and communicate small projects, and to communicate essential, sufficient information, efficiently for large projects.

Step 6

Each task is aligned with one or more sub-objectives by placing an open circle in the boxes corresponding to the intersections to tasks and objectives.

Step 7

These are the dates on which you will provide a status report on your project. Determining these dates requires collaboration with your team, and with the person assigning you the project. When your OPPM is completed, it should not only have "buy-in" from all stakeholders, but should actually be a simple, pictorial representation of what you plan to do, why, by whom, what cost, and when status reports are expected. Building "buy-in" is a powerful component of OPPM.

Step 8

This is a high level picture of your schedule. You create a time line for each of the project's tasks by placing an empty circle in the boxes alongside the task, representing the start, length and completion date for each task. Clicking once adds an empty circle, clicking twice bolds the circle, clicking a third time adds an open square, clicking a 4th fills in the square. The squares identify additional scope added to the project. Clicking the "Mark Major Milestone" will allow you to highlight any cell as a major milestone.

Step 9

The primary owner for each task is designated by the letter A. You may show subordinate owners as either B or C in their responsibility.

Step 10

This is the portion of the OPPM that deals with subjective or qualitative tasks. These are often matters of judgment, opinion or taste rather than absolute fact. Not everything about a project can be clearly measured. Architectural beauty and cell phone performance are good examples, we know it when we see it or hear it, yet it is hard to specifically measure. You will later show performance by the colors green, yellow, or red. This section also provides for a forecast of your team's future expectations like do you now expect the project to finish on time. Be sure to align objectives and owners to these qualitative tasks. MyOPPMâ„¢ provides for 6 qualitative tasks. Type the task, and then fill in the open circles as you did for step 6 and step 9. Do not place open circles as you did for step 8, as colors will later fill those boxes.

Step 11

On the lower right-hand side of the OPPM is where the budget is represented. The budget is dealt with simply, using bar graphs, with a bar graph for each portion of the budget. When the portion is on budget, it will be depicted with green, when running slightly over yet recoverable, it is shown in yellow. And when it is incurably over budget, it will be depicted as red. MyOPPM provides for 3 different budget lines. You may also use these bars to represent metrics other than cost.

Step 12

For the reader, this section answers why, and what next. A good summary clears up any ambiguities or glaring questions, and heads off potential future misunderstandings by answering questions prompted by the graphics. Do not explain what is clearly shown by the OPPM graphics themselves. Your language should add future expectations to your analyses. The space for the summary and forecast is limited by design. This lack of space encourages efficiency, and is most powerful when read as part of a future status report.

5 Reporting Steps