Project Management for practice research

I took part in a Project Management workshop. I hadn’t been sure what to expect, as I’d never got to grips with the MS Project software, and was pleasantly surprised at how our trainer used the sticky-note activity (and many more hands-on ones), which fit my way of thinking.

One of the trickiest parts of my research has been to figure out how to proceed with the Object creations; the four historical dresses. What would I need to do first? What was essential to complete before moving onto the next step? How long would it all take? And so on. Of course, at this stage all of the duration for each task are estimates. One would think that after a lifetime of sewing and embroidering I would have looked at the hours it took me at some stage, but unfortunately I had not. At this stage the duration is thus a guesstimate and will be updated as I go along witch the first object creation.

Creating a network diagram with coloured sticky notes on cheap IKEA kids’ drawing paper taped together, then using pens to work out the connections, has been an excellent exercise in focusing on the tasks required for creating the first Object and its components. The red line indicated the critical path. Unsurprisingly that’s the embroidery.

1200-object-a-network-diagram
If you are as kinaesthetically and visually inclined as I am, the good old method of shoving-bits-of-coloured-paper-around might work very well for you. I’m now using this to populate an MS Project document and produce a Gantt chart.