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Praveen Malik

About: Praveen Malik

Praveen Malik, PMP, has two-plus decades of experience as a project management instructor and consultant. He regularly conducts project management workshops in India and abroad and shares his project management thinking in his blog, PM by PM.

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All Articles and Webinars by Praveen Malik

A Beginners Guide to Baselining a Project

Written on March 24, 2020, by

Throughout my career as a project manager, I have been through many project audits, but the first one is etched in my memory. During that first audit as a PM, I was asked to show the Microsoft Project schedule of my project. When I showed the schedule, the auditor asked me to then show the…

The Best Ten Microsoft Project Tips for Beginners

Written on March 10, 2020, by

There is an old adage which says, “Well begun is half done.” It means that once you start something well, the rest will become easier, and it’s especially true when learning Microsoft Project (MSP). I started using MSP in the year 1997. I was a greenhorn at that time and did not have much experience,…

How to Correctly Setup Actual Dates in MS Project

Written on February 10, 2020, by

How do you expect MS Project (MSP) to behave when you enter an Actual Start date for a task? You would likely expect it to store the date in the ‘Actual Start’ field and stop there, but MSP does something more than that. MSP also changes the ‘Start’ date field if the Actual Start is…

Milestone Reporting Using Gantt Charts in MS Project

Written on January 21, 2020, by

Gantt charts are very popular with project managers and senior managers. They are primarily used to create and communicate project schedules but they can also be used for preparing status reports and giving presentations. They can be combined with project milestones to create richer status reports and presentations. Gantt charts can be easily prepared in…

Four Ways to Customize the Gantt Chart in MS Project

Written on January 6, 2020, by

Gantt chart is the default view in MS Project. Since the inception of MS Project (MSP), Microsoft engineers have used Gantt chart as the default, although I have often wondered why they didn’t choose some other view. I think Network diagram may have been a better choice, as it is a much better tool for…

PMO Best Practices: 7 Steps for Better Schedule Management

Written on December 3, 2019, by

A few years ago, I was hired as a Project Management Office (PMO) consultant for a software products company. My assignment was to setup their PMO, implement best practices, and oversee projects for twelve months before handing over the setup to the client. My assignment ended up lasting thirteen months. Some would say it’s an…

A Beginner’s Guide to Resource Leveling in MS Project

Written on November 25, 2019, by

How would you feel about someone else doing a job for you and not charging you a penny? I am sure we’ve all had moments when this would sound pretty good, but what if this person botched up the job or did something that you just couldn’t understand? Well, then you would likely be pretty…

Resource Leveling: How Can You Use it in Project Management?

Written on November 5, 2019, by

A person inexperienced in project management may think that resource leveling is a method of making use of resources having the same height. Most experienced project managers know that it is a resource optimization technique which tries to make the best use of available resources to create a workable project schedule. Resource leveling is often…

A New Look at MS Project Task Types: Fixed Duration and Effort Driven

Written on October 8, 2019, by

What would you think if you were steering your car right, but it turned left, as if it had a mind of its own? You would probably curse the machine and say it is not meant for you. You might also think that there is Artificial Intelligence working in the background. MS Project (MSP) is…

How to Use Forward and Backward Pass for Activity Assignments

Written on September 17, 2019, by

I’m sure you know that a good schedule is critical for the project success. However, did you know that network diagrams are extremely important for creating a good project schedule? In my experience, many senior project managers and project planners shun network diagrams. They just don’t see any value in creating or analyzing them. In…

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