Modern Project Management - Case Study 1

Read the case study below and write a 1-2 page response to the questions following the case study. The response should be written in APA format, including a title page, in-text citations to relevant course readings or other materials, and a reference list.

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Case Study 1

Troi, the project manager of a large information systems project, arrives at her office early to get caught up with work before her co-workers and project team arrive. However, as she enters the office she meets Neil, one of her fellow project managers, who also wants to get an early start on the day. Neil has just completed a project overseas. They spend 10 minutes socializing and catching up on personal news.

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Troi walks to her desk and opens her laptop. She was at her client’s site the day before until 7:30 p.m. and has not checked her e-mail or voice mail since 4:30 p.m. the previous day. She has 2 voicemails, 16 e-mails, and 10 posts on her team Slack channel. She spends 15 minutes reviewing her schedule and “to do” lists for the day before responding to messages that require immediate attention. Troi spends the next 25 minutes going over project reports and preparing for the weekly standup meeting. Her manager — who just arrived at the office — interrupts her. They spend 20 minutes discussing the project. He shares a rumor about a potential acquisition he’s heard about. She tells him she hasn’t heard anything but will keep him posted if she does. The 9:00 a.m. project status meeting starts 15 minutes late because two of the team members have to finish a job for a client. Several people go to the cafeteria to get coffee and doughnuts while others discuss last night’s baseball game. The team members arrive, and the remaining 45 minutes of the progress review meeting surface project issues that have to be addressed and assigned for action. After the meeting Troi goes down the hallway to meet with Victoria, another IS project manager. They spend 30 minutes reviewing project assignments, since the two of them share personnel. Victoria’s project is behind schedule and in need of help. Troi offers to free up some of the team’s time to help her get back on track. Troi returns to her office and makes several phone calls and returns several e-mails before walking downstairs to visit with members of her project team. Her intent is to follow up on an issue that had surfaced in the status report meeting. However, her simple, “Hi, guys, how are things going?” elicits a stream of disgruntled responses. After listening patiently for over 20 minutes, she realizes that among other things several of the client’s managers are beginning to request features that were not in the original project scope statement. She tells her people that she will get on this right away.

Returning to her office, she tries to call her counterpart, John, at the client firm but is told that he is not expected back from lunch for another hour. At this time, Eddie drops by and says, “How about lunch?” Eddie works in the finance office and they spend the next half hour in the company cafeteria gossiping about internal politics. She is surprised to hear that Jonah Johnson, the director of systems projects, may join another firm. Jonah has always been a powerful ally. She returns to her office, answers a few more e-mails, catches up on Slack, and finally gets through to John. They spend 30 minutes going over the problem. The conversation ends with John promising to do some investigating and to get back to her as soon as possible. Troi goes outside to the company’s atrium, where she sits next to a creek, meditating for 30 minutes. Troi then takes the elevator to the third floor and talks to the purchasing agent assigned to her project. They spend the next 30 minutes exploring ways of getting the necessary equipment to the project site earlier than planned. She finally authorized express delivery. When she returns to her desk, her watch reminds her that she is scheduled to participate in a conference call at 2:30. It takes 15 minutes for everyone to get online due to problems with the technology. During this time, Troi catches up on some e-mails. She spends the next hour exchanging information about the technical requirements associated with a new version of a software package they are using on systems projects like hers. Troi decides to stretch her legs and goes on a walk down the hallway, where she engages in brief conversations with various co-workers. She goes out of her way to thank Chandra for his thoughtful analysis at the status report meeting. She returns to find that John has left a message for her to call him back ASAP. She contacts John, who informs her that according to his people, her firm’s marketing rep had made certain promises about specific features her system would provide. He doesn’t know how this communication breakdown occurred, but his people are pretty upset over the situation. Troi thanks John for the information and immediately takes the stairs to where the marketing group resides.

She asks to see Mary, a senior marketing manager. She catches up on Slack updates on her phone while she waits for 10 minutes before being invited into her office. After a heated discussion, she leaves 40 minutes later with Mary agreeing to talk to her people about what was promised and what was not promised. Troi goes downstairs to her people to give them an update on what is happening. They spend 30 minutes reviewing the impact the client’s requests could have on the project schedule. She also shares with them the schedule changes she and Victoria had agreed to. After she says good night to her team, she heads upstairs to her manager’s office and spends 20 minutes updating him on key events of the day. She returns to her office and spends 30 minutes reviewing e-mails, her team Slack channel, and project documents. She logs on to the MS Project schedule of her project and spends the next 30 minutes working with “what-if” scenarios. She reviews tomorrow’s schedule and writes some personal reminders before starting on her 30-minute commute home.

Respond to the following questions.

  • How effectively did Troi spend her day? Explain.
  • What does the case tell you about what it is like to be a project manager? What did you expect Troi to do during her day and what surprised you about Troi’s day?

Question 1

It is nonetheless to say that Troi’s day is Very busy and productive as she has to manage a diverse set of activities. Troi starts her day by reviewing her schedule and to-do list which shows that she wants to complete tasks within the due timeline. Also, she spends her time on project reports and preparing for weekly standard meetings. In between this she also needs to attend to her manager for discussing projects. This indicates that Troi is Not only responsible for completing her tasks while managing projects but also she spends time with the project members to discuss the status of ongoing projects. From the scenario, it also has been seen that Troi is currently working on multiple projects. Her effectiveness can be clearly understood from the meetings in Idea of with Victoria where she tried to help this project to get back on track as it was behind schedule. After The team status meeting, Troi also visits her project team members in order to be aware of any crisis they are facing which indicates her effective leadership characteristics (Rahmadani et al., 2020). Moreover, “Hi, guys, how are things going?” Also supporting her active responsiveness towards their team members. Through the conversation with the team members Troi effectively identifies the challenges with ongoing project scope statements, and she takes the responsibility to make things correct. 

This piece of study also shows that Troi finds time to gossip with her colleagues to get aware of internal office politics. She also spent time with the supplier and vendors about the project site and from this, it can be understood that she provides attention to every bit of a project to make it successful and to complete it within the due timeline.  In between such a busy schedule, Troi finds time for stretching and meditation as well which is helpful for making her more energetic. Furthermore, Troi Spent time working with what-if scenarios and directly had discussions with her project team members. It undoubtedly can be stated that which way Troi spends her time is much more effective as she manages her time actively while handling multiple tasks simultaneously. She also takes care of communication issues from which teamwork can be hampered or projects can fail to meet client expectations or timelines.

Question 2

Following the case of Troi, it is understood that the role of project manager is quite challenging. The project manager should have time management skills to manage multiple tasks simultaneously as Troi does. Also, a project manager should have problem-solving skills as she has, which can be helpful in managing the team and ensuring effective communication and collaboration. A project manager is responsible for defining the scope of the project, maintaining the schedule, planning project cost, managing project resources, documenting the progress of the project and communicating with stakeholders while assessing risk and leading quality assurance (Singh & Williams, 2021). Undoubtedly Troi is a good example of a project manager as she manages her time very well, handling multiple tasks along with addressing issues. The surprising fact is their choice of behaviour and their competence to handle diverse activities within a day being calm and responsive.


Rahmadani, V. G., Schaufeli, W. B., & Stouten, J. (2020). How engaging leaders foster employees’ work engagement. Leadership & Organization Development Journal, 41(8), 1155-1169.

Singh, H., & Williams, P. S. (2021). A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge: PMBOK (®) Guide. In Project Management Institute.