Here are some ideas for project status reports.

The 1 Pager

1-pager

On this one I am trying to communicate all the important stuff on a single page.

At the top I’ve got how we are doing for time, money and scope. To the right I put any headlines or issues. I’ve got a risk section showing the problems we are facing and how we are addressing. Then the velocity and projected date on the right.

So at a glance I should be able to see whether we are in trouble (via the red, yellow, green stop light) and how we are trending on time, money, and scope.

The Burndown

burndown

Ah. My favorite graph – the burndown. The burndown never lies. It’s the story of your project. It shows you how you are trending. It can show where you need to be. It shows you changes in scope. It also tells you when you are in trouble.

Changes in Scope

scope-creep

Every project is different. On some scope management is easy and built around trust. On others you have to watch it like a hawk.

If I think scope management is going to be an issue on a project, I will make any changes to scope crystal clear with a slide like this:

Others

Every company is different. And sometimes I will create dedicated presentations if there is a really important message I need to deliver. But if you basically make everything visible, and ask yourself:

What would I like to see if it was my project?

you’ll probably come close to what your sponsor wants to see to.

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