I read this and it annoyed me A LOT
read it, and then:
here is my reply…..
“Meeting deadlines—good. Planning visually—good. Successfully building the Hoover Dam—good”.
“We have a lot of respect for Mr. Gantt, and believe that if you’re planning to build another Hoover Dam, using a Gantt chart might make a whole lot of sense. But most of us are not building the Hoover Dam or mobilizing for war. (At least we really hope not.)”
This is disingenuous and slippery. Of course we’re not mobilising for war, but the real question is whether we are building something large or something small. If it’s reasonably complex then something simple like Monday will not be enough, we need a proper project plan with a critical path and some resource planning, ie a Gantt chart. If it’s small then fine, it’s hardly a project and I’m not interested.
“There’s a huge misconception that in order to be more productive and achieve great things, we need to become masters of project management.”
No, it’s not a misconception, it’s true. How we’d all love to find a magic easier way but sorry guys, understanding some concepts, and planning, and real work have to be done if you want to achieve great things.
“You don’t manage projects, you only manage people” – what utter rubbish! There’s cost, quality and time, and cost includes people and other resources. Yes you do need to manage your people, but there’s a lot more to PM than that. Like estimating, planning for risk, dependencies, critical paths, adapting to changes, making sure the reviews happen, etc. Which all require having a plan. It’s well known that management involves managing the task and the people, ask John Adair or Blake & Mouton. It’s not an either/or, it’s both.
“Gantt charts manage tasks and projects. People are a resource, a side effect, a secondary consideration no, just one of many important consideration
– for example, how many workers do you need to build a tunnel?
Reasonable question if you want to get it built!
The focus is always on the task and project at hand”.
Then they insert the most horrible and bad Gantt chart I’ve ever seen
Because it wouldn’t help their case if they showed a normal one would it?
“Because they’re focused on projects and not people, Gantt charts can become extraordinarily complex. You get lost in a web of hierarchies, dependencies, and endless subtasks, and totally lose sight of the bigger picture”. Only a BAD Gantt chart is like this. I recommend a high level plan with maximum 25 tasks, and then sub Gantts, again max 25 tasks, for how you’ll do each part. Not complicated, not getting lost, not endless.
“Many people complained that they had become slaves to Gantt charts, endlessly working to update and maintain the complex web of interdependencies and subtasks”.‘Slaves’ in that you have to keep to the project plan because you have a boss and a deadline? – sorry snowflakes, but YES. ‘Slaves’ in that the Gantt charts take ages? – not true. They take on hour to make and then 5 minutes a week to update. I can show you this is you want. This ‘slave’ thing is disingenuous exaggeration, and simply not true.
“Rather than making life easier, working with Gantt charts and other traditional project management methods simply created more work, headaches, and stress”.
Except that they DID build the Hoover dam, Apollo rockets, every bridge, every oil rig, every highway, every ship, every tunnel, every skyscraper, IN THE WORLD. And they are continuing to.
“What’s everyone on your team working on? Who’s busy and who’s not?”
Only a Gantt chart can tell you this. You could pull the data out and present it as a diary view, sorted by date or person,but where is the data from? The only way you can know who is needed where is from the original Gantt.
“So what are the key differences between a Gantt chart and the monday.com timeline?
- The timeline focuses on people, not tasks or projects so you can no longer see the dependencies, you can’t see WHY the task has to be done then, how much float it has, if any, and what happens if you don’t do it then
- The timeline is super flexible, without any metadata or dependencies to maintain – ah, flexibility. Yes a Gantt chart can super-easily be changed as well, though you don’t want to make too many, it super-annoys customers.
- You can always see the big picture of who’s working on what just like on a Gantt chart
- It forces you to “get real” with your plan, rather than planning in a vacuum – huh? I think they mean that network diagrams are made without taking into account resource requirements, which is correct. It’s at the Gantt stage that we then consider resources. It worked for the hoover dam etc, so in what way is a Gantt chart not “getting real”??
- It’s intuitive and a great asset for first-time managers = it avoids the hard business of actually learning a real skill that’s a little bit complex and scary at first
- It has powerful features for expert project managers to dive deeper and dissect – like what?? It doesn’t even have dependencies FFS!!
right, I’m going to lie down in a dark room now
or maybe listen to THIS as an antidote….
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