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I am new to project managment. I am trying to apply a task chart for different activities for my personal life as a "project". The chart has different areas, goals, taks, and schedule.

Pherhaps you could help me based on your experience on different projects.

Sometimes days or weeks after a task is scheduled , you realize that it's going to be part of a new bigger task and/or that is composed of different smaller tasks with well defined dates.

Suposse I scheduled task A . and I later realize that what I need to achieve the goal is not just A but A+B+C+D. And I have to assign dates to each one.

By now I just keep the new tasks as changes and comments of the original task A.

So I wonder what is going to be the best practice in project managment to deal with that change.

I don't know if just change the name of the original task in the chart so it represents all the different tasks it has now. for example change it to : "task ABCD". an keep the aditional tasks BCD and its dates and comments as part of "Task ABCD".

Or create a whole new "bigtask" . define better each subtask , write the change somewhere. and move the original task into it.

My concern is that a couple of weeks later I have a clear view exactly what was the progress, the steps done, why it toke more time etc. and the best way to visualize that.

Thanks.

note: if you have specific bibliography I'll appreciate that you share it.

  • If you really want to get into the "best practices" piece you would apply change/configuration management techniques. Basically document the change and how it impacts cost/scope/schedule/quality, have an appropriate authority approve it and carry on from there. For your "personal life" project you could do this through MS Project's task notes function, but on the job you'll likely need something more formal. – Doug B Mar 6 '14 at 14:55
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Project Management is not best suited for tasks in your personal life

A project has a start and an end - such as building a house. Tasks in your personal life are ongoing. Looks like you are on the right track with a task chart. You seem to be mixing it up with Project Management. I suggest you check the features of Task List or To-Do Manager software to see what options are available for you to meet your needs.

All the same, let me try to answer your questions in the context of project management.

I don't know if just change the name of the original task in the chart so it represents all the different tasks it has now. for example change it to : "task ABCD". an keep the aditional tasks BCD and its dates and comments as part of "Task ABCD".

Not a good idea. With the added subtasks, everything about Task A may change - start date, duration, end date... All traces of the earlier task may be lost.

Or create a whole new "bigtask" . define better each subtask , write the change somewhere. and move the original task into it.

Yes, create a whole new "bigtask" as a summary task. Move the earlier Task A as a subtask under it. Create new subtasks B, C and D also under the summary task. This way your earlier Task A will be preserved mostly. This is probably the closest you can get to address your concern. Here is how your Task A will look in typical Project Management software: Task A before change

Here it is with the summary task and the other new tasks added: Task A after change

  • thanks. That answers my question pretty much. I wonder if in your experience you keep note of such changes somewhere. Have you ever find necessary to show a visual sign or convention of such changes in the chart itself? to know months later where and why the original plan changed? – user1338101 Mar 6 '14 at 2:35
  • Well, Project Managers need something more than just a visual sign! We initially create a baseline plan with a cost estimate and schedule and keep that as the gold standard. If anything changes when the project is in progress, the tools allow us to compare baseline vs current plan. – Ashok Ramachandran Mar 6 '14 at 19:00
  • Great response! Here's another link in case anyone is looking for a larger and more up to date list of Todo List Software – Patrick Hankinson Nov 19 '15 at 18:43

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