Project Management for Musicians

This was the fourth course I took during my twelfth term with Berklee. Overall, it was a really good class, well thought out, and put together nicely. A bit too much on the required reading, but aside from that, a very solid and useful class for people that might not have had to organize their work in this way before.

My favorite part of the course was the final project where we “volunteered” to work with other students, playing the role of project manager for our assignments while being workers for other classmates on their respective projects. I particularly enjoyed the song that my team came up with: “Hope for the Hopeless.” I’ve put the details of that project in a separate post.

Here’s what was covered:

Week 1 – “Project Management in a Nutshell”, Sep 26th – Oct 2nd
Introduction, Your PM Tool Set, Meet and Greet, Reply, Introducing Some Music Makers, Project Lists, Preparing Your List, Prioritizing Your Projects, Next Actions, PM Phase Review, Quiz 1.1: Phases, Keep It Clean, Assignment 1: Project List, Recap

Week 2 – “Vision and Scope”, Oct 1st – Oct 7th
Introduction, Vision, Summary and Inspiration, Quiz 2.1: Sinicrope’s Vision Clarification, Interview with Jerry Slavet, Executive Producer, Micro-Implementations, Scope Statement Practice with Emily, Quiz 2.2: Scope Creep, Quiz 2.3: Project Acceptance, Discussion 2.1: Articulate Your Vision, Reply, Assignment 2: Scope Statement, Recap

Week 3 – “Understanding the Work”, Oct 8th – Oct 14th
Introduction, Interview with Elizabeth DeVore, Production Manager, The Work, WBS in Smartsheet, WBS Flow Charts, Workshop: Navigating a WBS, Exercise 3.1: Work Analysis, Reply, Quiz 3.1: WBS Code Numbers, Implementing a WBS, Assignment 3: Work Breakdown Structure, Recap

Week 4 – “Finances”, Oct 15th – Oct 21st
Introduction, Interview with Dana Levit, Financial Planner, Project Financial Management, Accounting Forms, Spreadsheet Setup, Interview with Elizabeth DaVore McGuire about Budgets, Discussion 4.1: Estimating Costs, Reply, Quiz 4.1: Make It Feasible, Assignment 4: Project Budget, Recap

Week 5 – “Time”, Oct 22nd – Oct 28th
Introduction, Interview with Mike King, Vice President of Enrollment Marketing, Managing Time, Understanding Timing Constraints, Day Schedule, Annual Timing Cycles, Workshop: What Comes First?, Quiz 5.1: Critical Path Practice, Discussion 5.1: Major Milestones, Assignment 5: Estimate Project’s Duration, Recap

Week 6 – “The Project Team”, Oct 29th – Nov 4th
Introduction, Introducing the Final Course Project, Project Teams, Quiz 6.1: RASCI, Interview with Anne Peckham, Chair of Voice Department, Interview with Mike King, Vice President of Enrollment Marketing and Management, Exercise 6.1: Skill Lists, Interview with Jerry Slavet, Executive Producer, Jerry Slavet Discusses Hiring, Whose Project Is It?, Assignment 6: Your Project Team, Recap

Week 7 – “Execution”, Nov 5th – Nov 11th
Introduction, Interview with Jerry Slavet, Executive Producer, Managing Execution, Content Creation in Context, Second Interview with Jerry Slavet, Discussion 7.1: The Management Dynamic, Quiz 7.1: Project Control, Interview with Anne Peckham, Chair of Voice Department, Interview with Elizabeth DeVore, Production Manager, Quiz 7.2: Meeting, Changing Scope, Assignment 7: Launch, Monitor, and Report, Recap

Week 8 – “Managing Workflow”, Nov 12th – Nov 18th
Introduction, Discussion 8.1: Focus, Processing Stuff, Quiz 8.1: Office Components, Interview with Anne Peckham, Chair of the Voice Department, Workshop: Processing Exercise, Discussion 8.2: Vampire Removal, Final Project Check-In, Assignment 8: Organization Project, Recap

Week 9 – “Risk Management”, Nov 19th – Nov 25th
Introduction, Discussion 9.1: War Stories, Interview with Elizabeth Devore, Production Manager, Risk Planning, Some Stories, Discussion 9.2: Resources, Risk Register, Workshop: Assumptions and Disasters, Interview with Emily Peal: Risk, Quiz 9.1: Rank the Risks, Interview with Bob Sinicrope, Music Teacher, Assignment 9: Your Risk Management Plan, Recap

Week 10 – “Creativity and Problem Solving”, Nov 26th – Dec 2nd
Introduction, Generating and Implementing Ideas, Encouraging Ideas, Discussion 10.1: Group Brainstorming, Quiz 10.1: Idea Evaluation, Quiz 10.2: Creativity Tools, Assignment 10: Strengthening Your Project, Recap

Week 11 – “Contracts, Tax Forms, Royalties, Invoices, and Other Existential Delights”, Dec 3rd – Dec 9th
Introduction, Organizing Bureaucracy, Samples and Resources, Checklist, Interview with Emily Peal: Contracts, Discussion 11.1: Your Contracts, Quiz 11.1: Contracts and VoWeLs, Interview with Dana Levit, Financial Planner, Bureaucracy and Risk, Assignment 11: Your Bureaucracy Checklist, Recap

Week 12 – “Project Closure”, Dec 10th – Dec 16th
Introduction, End-of-Project Roundup, Quiz 12.1: Closure Procedures, Discussion 12.1: What’s Your Next Project?, How Do You Define Success?, Assignment 12: Final Assignment, Closure Procedures, Recap