Recent Resources by Payson Hall

Charter Template

Here is a sample charter template for a small to medium business project. The first five sections can typically be developed after a meeting with the project sponsor. The remaining sections often require help of the core team to bring subject matter expertise to bear.

Charter Template MS Word

Charter Template PDF

Changing the Hand You’re Dealt

This article, from December 2006 Better Software, talks about the tactic of redefining a problem to facilitate a solution. It has a software example inside, but a background in software isn’t necessary to understand it.


Risk- A Calculated Gamble (1 of 2)

This is the first part of a 2-part article on risk management that appeared in Software Testing & Quality Engineering in 2003. This article talks about overcoming organization’s natural resistance to risk management.


Risk- Knowing the Odds (2 of 2)

This is the second part of a 2-part article on risk management that appeared in Software Testing & Quality Engineering in 2003. This article offers a practical approach to identifying, analyzing and mitigating project risks that can be accomplished in an afternoon for many projects.


How to Avoid Project Failures

Many of the problems faced by projects can be avoided, or at least contained, by effective project management practices. Using a “Top Ten” list as a framework, this article highlights 10 of the most frequent reasons for project failure, and examines some alternatives and remedies for each.


Escaping the Clutches of Zombie Projects

Why is senior management so often suprised by large scale project disasters? What can be done to change cultural attitudes to encourage timely and accurate status reporting? This article, originally appearing in STQE Magazine in September of 2001, tries to address these questions and provide communication tools to avoid Zombie Projects – Project that have died but refuse to lay down.


CIO Agenda – Improve Sponsorship

Despite promises of the past, C-level executives (CEO, CIO, CFO) are still waiting for better project information to support their decision-making. This sponsorship prescription for CIOs originally appeared in a Cutter IT Journal issue focused on “The New CIO Agenda” (August of 2003). It describes a basic approach to assessing and improving project sponsorship that requires no enterprise tools or consultants.


A Losing Gamble with Public Funds

Explores organizational and structural issues with large public sector IT projects. Why are they so likely to fail & so difficult to cancel? This article appeared in the Cutter IT Journal in 2003.


Naomi Karten

Naomi Karten is a wonderful author, speaker and consultant for organizations trying to improve their customer service. Among her specialties are creation of effective service level agreements.

Project Management Insititute

The Project Management Institute is a professional organization for Project Managers. If you manage projects for a living, a good source of networking might be the PMI chapter near you.

Dorset House

Dorset House is a niche publishing house that focuses on software engineering, commercial software development, and project management topics.

Task Description Template/Sample

This is a short template of a task description that includes a worked out example. It is useful as the work breakdown structure dictionary entry for a given task. Think of it as a mini-work order. It is a vehicle to help task owners clearly describe the work and capture estimate information.

MS Word Template
Task Description PDF

Sample Risk Management Plan

This generic risk management plan is a starting place for your efforts. It does not assume availability of any tools to assist you. Feel free to download and customize. If you find something that should be included or have other comments or suggestions, post them below.


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