Project Management for NGOs

By: BigTech
Fri, 09/12/2011 - 14:31

NASSCOM Foundation arranged its corporate volunteers to conduct a program management workshop for NGOs in Mumbai. The main goal of the workshop was to create a platform for NGOs to interact with the corporate world on the best practices in managing multiple projects, human resources, fund collections, overcoming sudden unforeseen changes, optimizing output, successful and effective implementation of projects. For this, MphasiS agreed to provide the venue (conference room) and also to work with Octaware and DBOI in putting together the curriculum of the workshop. 

The session started with volunteers from MphasiS giving an overview on how a program can be created - right from its conceptualizing to its planning and implementation. Jitesh Sashidaran gave a top-down view of how a program has a vision and also emphasized that the strategy should be in line with the organization culture. He was followed by Anand Nanavati who took the audience through the importance of effective leadership and communication in any program management. Very thought provoking! IMG0309A

We had also invited Mr.Sajid Hameed, Executive Vice President, Octaware to share his profound knowledge of around 18 years in the field. He explained the finer aspects of Project Management and focused on how the manager should 'identify the critical path' in any plan. He suggested tips of distinguishing a successful project from an unsuccessful one in terms of “completion On Budget – On Time”. He stressed on the need for a 'Plan before Act'. 

Sajid's ppt is attached herewith - Project Management for NGOs

Following Sajid's talk, we had an interactive session with the NGO participants. Muzna Menon and Shanti Taneja from DBOI shared their insights of program management. The discussions touched many topics and whether the donor was a partner or customer was very energetic! Ritesh Maniar from Mphasis shared his experience of 'team composition' in terms of performance and how a program manager can improve performance. By the end even the volunteers were happy to have gained an ngo's perspective on 'programs'.

ritesh (mphasis) and sajid (octaware) standing shoulder to shoulder in the PM for NGOs workshopSajid had also planned one of the sessions to be an exercise that the audience then did in groups. For a given brief, the groups were to define a Project Charter. This exercise too opened our eyes to some simple yet crucial aspects of any project. The corporate volunteers also joined the groups to handhold the ngo participants through the exercise.


All in all, 17 of us were empowered within three hours due to the combined knowledge shared by Mphasis, Octaware and DBOI. We thank them for taking time out of their busy schedules of their official roles of Vice President, Project Managers, etc.


PM4Ngos group - volunteers and participants

Volunteering for Najeeb (Octaware) did not end with the workshop. He has contributed in drafting this blog too! Thanks, Najeeb.

Popular Project Management tools: MS Project as donation