Project managing myself all up in dis bizness

So I have recently been having some trouble handling everything as PM, not going to deny it. There’s a lot to organise, a lot of responsibility with handling the client, facilitators and Leads, deciding on a final product that we’re happy with, delegating tasks to people weekly or more, as well as ensuring that we push fast enough for a finished project. (I only just found out this week that most PMs usually have a person delegated to doing all the documentation, while they keep the project running smoothly behind the scenes, MIND = BLOWN.) But anyway! I needed a way of figuring out what I was doing that wasn’t working too well, and how to help myself fix those things.

SO, I hired out a bunch of library books about project management (Which are now overdue, hi time management, more like I lost the receipt for a while and forgot when they were due. OH WELL.)to give me more of an idea of how to go about this whole thing. Hopefully it’s just as informative for you guys as it was for me! 🙂

Tools and Techniques:

  1. Walk the talk
  2. Be honest and straight
  3. Say what you think (back up with facts)
  4. Keep your cool
  5. Avoid blame culture

“You can learn a lot by putting the same question to different people.”

Handling the Boss:

  1. Keep the boss informed
  2. Dealing with a difficult boss:
    1. Make a note of the key points you’re going to make.
    2. Arm yourself with specific examples
    3. Rehearse key points and specific examples
    4. Try an informal oral approach
    5. If that doesn’t work, put your concerns in writing. Avoid any biased judgements or comments: be as factual and objective as you can.

Time Management:

  1. Effective time management requires:
    1. A clear focus on the results you’re seeking to achieve;
    2. Resistance to distractions and irrelevancies which get in the way and don’t help you achieve your objectives;
    3. Control of each day’s agenda so that you make the best possible use of the time available.
    4. The “to do” list
    5. Set deadlines
    6. Don’t be too reactive – first and foremost, focus on meeting your own objectives and targets. Discipline yourself to put your own interests first, THEN help others.
    7. Hide yourself away
    8. Take a break

Managing Meetings:

  1. Do we need a meeting?
  2. What’s the purpose?
  3. possible reasons include:
      • to pass on or obtain information
      • to seek views
      • to identify possible ways of dealing with a problem
      • to take a decision
      • to get people to take action
      • to persuade people to support a particular point of view
      • to resolve differences of opinion
      • to review progress on a project
      • to plan future work
  4. Keep length in mind
  5. Have no distractions (e.g. mobiles, laptops, etc.)
  6. End on an upbeat note
  7. Take notes
  8. Push your own point of view, but be open to others’

Managing Projects:

  1. Define the project, and make the purpose clear
  2. Identify risks and obstacles, rate them, (prevention, reduction, contingency, accept)
  3. Break the project down into manageable chunks
  4. Make sure your outputs are SMART
    • Specific
    • Measurable
    • Achievable/Agreed
    • Relevant/Realistic
    • Time-limited
  5. Planning and Implementation:
    • Gantt chart
    • Milestones and performance criteria
    • Be on time

Managing Communication:

  1. Choose how to communicate (Slack, email, phone, etc.)
  2. Understand the message you want to send
  3. Understand the audience
  4. KISS (Keep It Short and Simple)
  5. Avoid jargon

There’s definitely a lot more overall, with a bunch of other things I haven’t included that are much more specific to other areas of management, but yay! Brushing up on things is always a good help 🙂

Essentially, I found this book to be really concise and helpful, and I’ll hopefully be able to implement a lot of what I learned into the CITS project, and future ones that will hopefully come. 🙂

The blogging catch-up

Alrighty guys, this week I’m going to really try and catch up with my blogs and such (I’ve been very slack with what I’ve actually been researching and such, sorry about that ><)

First up – GALAXIES.

Galaxy_01

So to create the picture above (Still not quite finished, need to spend another hour or two on it for polish), I followed the steps in these two tutorials:

Starry Sky Tutorial

Night Sky Tutorial

Both are roughly the same, just one focuses more on SAI, which is fine 🙂

Essentially I still wasn’t super happy with how this galaxy turned out, so I’m going to test some new things, perhaps take some tips from this tutorial: here and see how it goes :DD

I’m considering adding some 3D elements to these for more effect on the animation side, make it a little more immersive 🙂 I’ll play around and see how I go.

Woop 🙂

Stupid Photoshop.

So after trying all night after work to get PS to work, nope! It keeps crashing.

Not sure why, could be I’m working with files that are too large, but I sized them down to 1500 x 3500 and there were still problems. It was on my old default settings so I’m super confused.

GOING TO UPDATE AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS. SORRY PRODUCTIVITY. NOT TODAY.

Projects

Okie dokie! I have a cool thing to talk about as a potential side project, once I’m working less and such 🙂

High poly models, mixed with small teaser trailers! Woo!

This is kind of like a mini specialisation task, only it’s not so mini. I’ve talked about it with a few people and they all seem to think it’s a good idea so far, so that’s encouraging!

Alrighty, so as most of you know I’m into cosplay, like a lot. So I wanted to see how I could turn my desire to make costumes (which I have no time for right now) into a more productive desire that could contribute towards my portfolio at the end of this tri. SO. I HAVE SOMEHOW DONE IT.

I’m going to hopefully 3D model cosplayers from around the world, who I personally believe capture their characters so perfectly that it shows simply through their pictures. I’m going to make high poly models of their cosplays and produce short, cinematic teaser trailers (teasers for what? Nothing really, I just want something really cool for people to watch and get excited about, even if they don’t know what they’re getting excited about :P) for each.

So for now, this means that I have to ask every cosplayer I wish to do this for, for permission to use their body for my purposes (sounds creepy, in the creepiest of ways.) I’m kind of struggling to word this in a way that won’t sound weird to them, but thankfully I have a friend who’s big in the cosplay scene that I can start with (yay connections!) and she’s agreed to let me use one of her cosplays as my first attempt. :DDD

BRING ON…

THARJA AWW YISS.

1540527_1100378856643387_502678606825706597_o 10551715_1006294669385140_7238708830472045018_o

10854215_989447844403156_4390262331964878546_o 10986872_1027970493884224_237453895922724249_o

I might sketch up some quick animatics or something to give you all an idea for what I have in mind, teaser-wise, but for now I’m just excited to 3D model cosplayers 😀

I DID A THING (UNRELATED TO UNI WORK BUT NOT REALLY)

GUYS. I QUIT ONE OF MY JOBS.

DO YOU KNOW WHAT THIS MEANS?!

After the end of this month, I’ll have cut down the time I work from 40hrs/week to 20 (Yes I actually work longer than the average full-time worker). I’ll have time to study more, and practise more, and everything! But of course, my last day won’t be until the end of this month. So there’s that. 😄

BUT.

I FINALLY DID THE THING. NO MORE PRESSURE ON ME FROM EVERYONE TO DO MORE WORK THAT I LITERALLY DON’T HAVE TIME TO DO. HOORAY.

SORRY, I’M JUST EXCITED.