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ISSN: 1557-9212

Reforming Project Management (RPM) is a magazine for those of us who are unsettled with common practice. The current focus is on the design and construction industry, however we call on the best of project management from all disciplines and practices.

While RPM started as a personal weblog, we welcome others to contribute articles and to join authors here in co-blogging activities. Please contact us with your proposals.

Many thanks go to Kim Black for her technical support in publishing this magazine.

The taglines under the "Reforming Project Management" header are from books by Taiichi Ohno and Shigeo Shingo, all published by Productivity Press.

Last Planner is a registered trademark of the Lean Construction Institute, www.leanconstruction.org. Essential Conversations, Responsibility-based Project Delivery, Study-Action Team and Good 5 Why are trademarks of Lean Project Consulting, Inc., www.leanproject.com.

© 2005, 2009 All content is available for republishing with permission.
RPM is published by Hal Macomber, White Mtns., NH 03223 603-726-5051.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 João Petrocelle February 3, 2010 at 11:18 am

Hi Hal,

I’m a new reader so let me introduce myself. My name is João (the same as John) Petrocelle and I’m a 34 years old Construction Manager from São Paulo, Brazil. I have almost 10 years of experience as a Project Manager of construction projects in Brazil like Supermarkets, Data centers, Malls and Warehouses. I’m also a PMP and I have been studying Lean Construction for the last 4 months from now, reading some of the most important short papers by the authors: Koskella, Howell, Ballard and Formoso, etc…. My future intention is to write a Graduate (masters) paper on Planning and Control new approaches like the Last Planner in opposition to CPM, Cost Quality Time trade off Triangle, EV etc….,but I’m still struggling with the initial ideas, questions and definitions. One of these questions I would really like to share with you.
Here in Brazil the Design Build model of contracts in non-Residential constructions (the market I work in) is beginning to become the mainstream model. Turn Key is beginning to be abandoned for Fixed Price plus incentive Fee contracts. And designs and specs of the tenders are becoming more and more incomplete, for example: im am working on a R$ 72 million project (40 million USD) that was closed with only two or tree architectural blueprints and a few specs soli conditions, etc… The design is done by the main contractor like a normal Design Build premise.
I would really like to understand (if it exists) and establish a connection between Design Build Contracts and the need in these type of contracts for more empowered and collaborative approaches of Planning, Execution and Control like LPS. Is this true on your opinion? If so can you exemplify why? Is there any work on this theme?
In Construction Management here in Brazil, we face and suffer a great contradiction. The model of contracts is getting newer and more agile (of course; it is done by young financial and law experts). But planning, control and executing mistakes still ends with finger pointing (an old paradigm, i guess more close to the design bid build form of contract).
I would really like your comment on that.

Please write if in any point I didn’t make myself clear.
Thanks in advance

2 Thomas Ummels September 15, 2010 at 12:45 pm

Hi Hal

I would like to introduce Tom’s Planner to you. You might find our online project planning application interesting to pass on to your readers.

Tom’s Planner is the answer to a real problem, current project planning software is just often too complex for the average, mostly non tech savvy project manager. We see companies managing their resources and projects with Tom’s Planner but also individuals planning their weddings, thanksgiving dinners or home construction projects with Tom’s Planner. In a review a user described it as “‘Tom’s Planner, Gantt charts for the rest of us!’

Tom’s Planner is an extremely user friendly application. What makes Tom’s Planner stand out in the crowd of PM tools is that we approach the creation of project schedules from a visual angle instead of an abstract framework of activities and dependencies.

We’ve had a flying start since the beginning of November 2009 and in the past year grew from 240 to more than 27.000 registered users and are growing by the day. The application is used by a wide audience. The feedback we get is overwhelming, users are very enthusiastic.

I hope to hear from you and please let me know if you have any questions.



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