Laying the Foundation for Superior Project Managers: Practices, Principles, and Fundamentals

March 25 - May 24, 2019

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Curriculum Track: Project Management

Member Organization: National Events

This course carries 18 PDHs (Professional Development Hours)

Faculty: Howard Birnberg, Executive Director, Association for Project Managers; and Pedro Amaral, Managing Director, EFD - Engineered and Fully Developed; Barry LePatner, Founder of LePatner & Associates LLP; Andrew Mendelson, FAIA, Senior Vice President & Loss Prevention-Risk Management Officer at Berkley Design Professionals

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Building Project Management Expertise Week by Week

Designed to help new project managers gain skills and confidence to fit your firm's unique workflow specifications, Laying the Foundation for Superior Project Managers: Practices, Principles, and Fundamentals offers online, schedule-friendly training in the field of project management.

Combining the scheduling ease of video learning and the immediacy and intensity of a live classroom, this 9-module interactive course provides a convenient and cost-effective way to learn the fundamentals of project management—with little or no disruption to billable staff time.

Successful, profitable project delivery starts with superior management. Help your staff develop into confident, forward-thinking PMs with a course that adapts to their current workload while driving them to grow.

Course Outline

Module 1: Introduction

  • Review Syllabus and Course Structure, Grading, and Expectations
  • The Primary Job of a Project Manager
  • How Do Project Managers Communicate?

Module 2: Project Management Team and Process Management Concepts

  • Primary Role of Team Managers - Management Concepts
  • Problems Traced to a Weak/Ineffective Project Management System
  • Organization Life Cycle Curve
  • Project Delivery Systems and Methods
  • Impact on Construction Costs
  • Client Selection of Design Consultants
  • Owner/Client Concerns, Needs, & Role

Module 3: Planning and Management Concepts for Project Managers

  • Long-Range Planning Process-Elements
  • Decision-Making Management Concepts
  • Strategic Project Management Plan

Module 4: The Project Team Manager

  • Team Managers Characteristics and Responsibilities      
  • RFP/RFQ Preparation/Fee Determination and Negotiation
  • Role of Design Firm Project Managers in The Marketing Process
  • Delegation Techniques/Leveling Workload
  • Developing Training Programs, Mentoring Programs

Module 5: Soft Skills

  • Time Management
  • Preparing and Editing Written Materials
  • Public Speaking
  • Listening Skills
  • Successful Negotiating

Module 6: Working with Engineering/Architectural Firms

  • Owner/Client Criteria for Selecting A/E Consultants
  • Factors Impacting Traditional A/E Consultants
  • External Constraints on A/E Designers
  • Project Phases and Personnel Responsibilities
  • Project Development Steps
  • Basic Financial Model for Design Firms
  • Profit Planning for Design Firms

Module 7: Scoping, Budgeting, Monitoring, and Billing

  • Scope Determination
  • Managing Scope Creep and Project Design Change Orders
  • A/E Contract Types
  • Project Cost Plan/Project Budgeting
  • Monitoring/Controlling Design Costs
  • Prompt Payment of Sub Consultants by the Prime Consultant
  • Billing Checklist
  • Prompt Payment of Design Consultants by the Prime Consultant
  • Controlling Project Design Costs
  • Project Administration and Notebooks
  • Project Manager Manuals, Development and Content

Module 8: Project Quality/Risk Management/Other Topics

  • Concepts: Quality and Risk Management
  • Quality Assurance Programs
  • Peer Review Programs
  • Value Engineering
  • Commissioning/Partnering
  • Project Closeout and Client Satisfaction/Feedback
  • Building Information Modeling (BIM)
  • Peer Review Programs

Module 9: Staffing and Scheduling

  • Staffing Issues
  • Project Scheduling and Planning
  • Responsibilities of a Project Manager in Preparing a Plan
  • Benefits and Limitations of Project Schedule Networks


About the Presenter:

Howard Birnberg is president of Birnberg & Associates, a management consulting and association management firm, and executive director of the Association for Project Managers. For six years, he served as an instructor on project management in the Office of Executive Education at the Harvard University, Graduate School of Design. He also served as an adjunct assistant professor at Michigan State University, College of Human Ecology. Mr. Birnberg formerly served as a lecturer on project management for the University of Wisconsin, Department of Engineering Professional Development for nearly twenty years. He has also lectured at the University of Illinois-Chicago, Northwestern University, University of Kansas and Andrews University.

He is the author of Project Management for Designers and Facilities Managers, 4th ed. (J. Ross Publishing, 2015), Project Management for Building Designers and Owners (CRC Press, 1998), Project Management for Small Design Firms (McGraw-Hill, 1992) and served as general editor of New Directions in Architectural and Engineering Practice (McGraw-Hill, 1992). His research and articles regularly appear in professional journals, and he is currently serving as a columnist for Civil + Structural Engineer magazine.

Mr. Birnberg holds a Bachelor of Science in Architecture degree from the Ohio State University and a Masters in Business Administration from Washington University in St. Louis.



ACEC Members: $1045
Non-Members: $1345

Register Online: Click here

Class limited to 25.


This course takes place entirely online through recorded lectures, live discussions via WebEx, and an online forum/community for written posts.


Maureen Brown





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