SMC Edition – 20200705

Everyone can use a little help from a designated professional
Everyone can use a little help from a designated professional

I hope you enjoy your Sunday Morning Coffee page. It is here to inform, have fun and enlighten your day. Dip in and out during the day, put your feet up and relax. Have a coffee and enjoy.

This weeks edition is packed full of information and stories. Engage and humour me, please have a read and comment. Click like if you feel like doing so. Don’t forget to make your coffee first.

Sunday Morning Coffee ‘The Headliner’

Welcome to the Sunday Morning Coffee – Monopoly ‘Project Strategies’

This week, I’ve been looking at project strategies. A difficult topic at the best of times. Someone has an idea and wants to jump straight to the solution, sounds familiar? In Monopoly terms, it’s the let’s roll the dice, with the result of going straight to jail and not getting out.

Also, the approach to defining the type of solution to be developed at the outset, is like landing on the ‘Take a Chance’ card. Some times you wins and some times you lose. It all depends on the method of delivering and maintaining the solution. The old Kent Road environment verse the Oxford Street approach? Bespoke vs planned. Handy work vs tools and techniques.

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

The high-level approach and strategies need to be mapped out at the beginning of the project. Don’t just roll the dice and hope to land on a positive square.

Do you hire contract staff or contract out? Do you use company staff or buy in ready made solutions. Assuming the in house staff are available? Being optimistic that the off shelf solution is a best fit for your set of businesses. Have you the mapped out data of the as-is, to help make decisions at the beginning? What due diligence has been performed?

Buying houses on Monopoly is a balancing act, if you intend to win. Your strategies may vary, however, identifying the cost; the quality requirements; the products that are available; the current or planned workload and the programme approach are all factors in how successful you will be.

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

The quality criteria is a must. Do you want to end up in Whitechapel Road, or Bow Street? What will conform to your strategy that relates to the product’s operational environment. If you build Oxford Street will you be able to maintain it, or have to let it become run down? So much to determine, costs v quality. What is achievable within all known time and cost constraints for your project?

Owning the four stations would be nice, but ‘should nice to have’, make the scope? Be practical, work within your known parameters. Be pragmatic, when your stakeholders have different quality issues. Keep this short and focus on the key issues that are apparent at this stage.

Last week i wrote about the mission statement and the scope. In Monopoly terms it was this: The earliest known version of Monopoly, known as The Landlord’s Game, was designed by an American, Elizabeth Magie, and first patented in 1904 but existed as early as 1902. … A series of board games was developed from 1906 through the 1930s that involved the buying and selling of land and the development of that lands.

With the above in mind, ensure your business summary includes an indication of the benefits and costs related to the project.

Give an indication of how the benefits will be realised and who will own the process of realising the benefits.

Explain why the project supports the business strategy.

Acceptance criteria. If your scope is to own all four stations to realise the benefits, then make sure this is clear in the project brief. While four stations are easy to count. In real life say for example one hundred payrolls had to be migrated onto one payroll platform. The measurable would be # of migrations to complete and capacity to receive said migrations. However, if a third data quality measure is not added, how do you know if the customer and staff who will be affected are satisfied?

Outside factors! Know the projects, the products and or processes with which this proposed project and its products may have to fit. If you own one utility company but need the other to function within the success measures. Make sure you either own it or have a contract to use it. Again these are hidden costs to the project, if not identified. On the assumption you are allowed to use the other utility company. It’s never to early to ask. The sourcing team might have other ideas!!! be sure to include them as a stakeholder.

Constraints and project restrictions can come like a plague, very quickly. In the case of Monopoly it’s the equivalent of a super tax or rent due or income tax. Anything like time, resources, or funding impacts the ways of executing the project, and the eventual outcome of the project.

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on Pexels.com

In closing, Monopoly is a board game. In the game, players roll two six-sided dice to move around the game board, buying and trading properties, and developing them with houses and hotels. Players collect rent from their opponents, with the goal being to drive them into bankruptcy. Money can also be gained or lost through Chance and Community Chest cards, and tax squares; players can end up in jail, which they cannot move from until they have met one of several conditions. Don’t forget the project brief is the first of a few document that will give you a chance of being successful.

I have a lot more stories, until next time.


As a business leader or owner, we can help you with strategic decisions and delivery them. We are available now for work, contact us.

CV Image of Kenneth Mulley-Smith and Roger Smith
CV Image of Kenneth Mulley-Smith and Roger Smith

“Vast Project Management Knowledge and Experience”

Ken Mulley-Smith And Roger Smith are available to work now. Contact us. We both have vast Project Management knowledge and experience in the space of Financials (Oracle and SAP). We have managed large scale changes for businesses over the last thirty years.

As a business leader or owner, we can help you with strategic decisions and delivery them.

We are available now for work, contact us. Read more of what we can for you.


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Pro-tip: Project Strategies

Starting up a project?

Pro-Tip of the week. Project Management

This page is related to project management and my knowledge and experiences of projects that I’ve worked on. I will share both my comprehension and adventures. I’ve seen many an enterprise that is carefully planned to achieve a particular aim. I’ve lent knowledge and experience to companies across the UK, Europe and the world with Information Technology Solutions.

Read what this professional thoughts and experiences have are

Last week: Ask a professional and save time, flip back and remind yourself.

Pro-tip Ask a professional and save time, read more.


Project Strategy – What is a Project Brief?

A successful project brief will only be useful if you have an agreed project board executive named to lead the stakeholders at the start up of the initiation phase. Having run many of the initiation meetings, the first one must include the executive to kick off proceedings. And be there for the first day on hand to provide guidance and knowledge.

Just like a cricket match can not start if you don’t have the players, a pitch and an umpire.

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on Pexels.com

The key other stakeholders including process owners should also be attending. The background to the project should be described, along with the key objectives. Understand the desired outcomes and project scope and exclusions, and you’re off to a flyer.

Name the key stakeholders and their role in this change. Record the constraints and assumptions (resources, organization, competencies, start-up time, technologies). Understand the project tolerances, what can the business case withstand and when you need to report exclusions to the board. Document the desired timeframe for the delivery of the change. List the systems and which will either provide data or expect data out.

When your project brief is complete you will have documented the project definition and outlined the business case. The next level of detail will also have been discovered.

Project Strategies
Project Strategies

Discover more and read on about the project brief here


Project Laughs

Laughter is a way to manage consensus and team building. Funny mantras like, “There’s never enough time to do it right, but always enough time to go back and do it over” can effectively bring a team together towards a common outcome. Humour permits exploration of new ideas.

Studies have shown that managers whose leadership style includes humour have the best-performing employees. Leaders who use humour are perceived more positively and as more likeable and better communicators. 

Humour helps people remember. You may be using powerful IT management software to track progress, but if you really want people to remember a key point – get them to laugh about it.

Laughter is a way to manage consensus and team building. Funny mantras like, “There’s never enough time to do it right, but always enough time to go back and do it over” can effectively bring a team together towards a common outcome.


If project content is allowed to change freely, the rate of change will exceed the rate of progress.

Success poster

How many project managers does it take to change a lightbulb? Only one, but you’ll require a scope change to get them to turn it on.

Why did the project manager use Agile PM to change a lightbulb? He heard that waterfall and electricity don’t mix.


Read last weeks Sunday Morning Coffee Here -Project Space Unfit For Habitation

Sunday Morning Coffee

Today, I’m remembering a project I worked on. Over time the fond memories have blocked out some of the bad ones. This is a lighthearted view of some of my obscure observations I can recall. No one needs to worry about being names or shamed, that is not my objective.


May Review Out Now, June to follow next week 🙂

I’ve spent the month of May during the lock down, creating content to explain my business I.T. services and solutions. I’ve also had a bit of fun writing a Sunday Morning Coffee column. I am an I.T. Consultant professional, everyone can use a little help from a designated professional. Read more about my activities in May, 2020 here


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Did you like your Sunday Morning Coffee read?

Thank you for engaging.  Please humour me, if you like what you read, then please pop over to my social media accounts and follow me. Everyone can use a little help from a designated professional. When it comes to managing the different aspects of your business, an IT consultant can help with many different facets.

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A selection of our previous posts…


Let’s build something together.

Everyone can use a little help from a designated professional


Everyone can use a little help from a designated professional. When it comes to managing the different aspects of your business, an IT consultant can help with many different facets.

As a small business owner (or medium-sized business owner), you are in charge of all aspects of your business. You may have to tend to many different things you would rather not have to. This may include, being the administrator, salesperson, marketing lead, and even in charge of Information Technology (IT). Taking one or more of these jobs that don’t quite relate directly to your business can help you focus on the things that matter most.

Hiring an IT Consultant can be beneficial to your business, but finding one can be a task in its own. Everyone can use a little help from a designated professional.

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