Czechs in the City: The Czech-American Experience in Cleveland

Getting Down to Business | June 8, 2009

On Tuesday June 2, 2009, Dr. Stith, Cassidy and I met with the budding Business Management grad students collaborating on the Summer “Keeping It in Czech” Project Management course . By combining our knowledge and efforts, we Hipsters and Busi(wo)Mans, are hoping to make sense, organize and create a plan for all of the wonderful programming events the “Czech Your Public History” class brainstormed last semester.

In Tuesday’s session, we started a Project Portfolio Evaluation and completed a Project Assessment Matrix. The end result of the Project Portfolio Evaluation is to provide the upcoming courses with a platform and guideline as they continue planning the programming events. The Project Assessment Matrix exercise flushed out our initial goals of the public history project. Some of these include stimulating interest of Czech cultural heritage, awareness of activities in local Czech social communities, post event end results (guests reaction, entertainment level, feeling connected, etc.), budget restraints, program feasibility, and available resources. Once evaluations were defined, we weighted them on a scale of 1-5, with 1 indicating less significance in the completion of the project and 5 carrying greater significance in the completion of the project. For example, stimulating interest in Czech cultural heritage weighted a 5, budget a 3 and feasibility a 2.

The second part of the exercise was to evaluate these weighted goals against the different programming events. Hosting a cultural dinner is one of the programming events. To complete the exercise, we pondered the weighted goal (stimulating interest in Czech cultural heritage) and it’s significance on the program event (cultural dinner). We decided that this weighted goal is a very important criterion in the program event and gave it a 5. In order to get the total score for the program event, the goal weight (5) is multiplied by the program criterion score (5) for an end result of 25.

This process was continued for the remaining weighted goals against the cultural dinner, then totaled. As the other projects are weighted and rated, the matrix is completed and the program priority is established by comparing the total weighted scores. Please see the included example.



Keeping It in Czech Project Portfolio Evaluation

(Program Criterion Scores from 1 – 5, 5 being most influential in completion of project)



            Cultural Dinner
Evaluation Criteria: Weighted 1-5, 5 reflecting greater end result upon completion of program

 Program Criterion Score

Total Score = (Weighted Criteria x Criterion Score)
Stimulate Interest in Czech Cultural Heritage




Awareness of activities in Czech social community




Post Event End Results




Size of Budget (high rank is low budget)








Total Weighted Score




Program Assumptions   Sewing ladies’ periogies  
    Use students to serve  
Post Events Desired Feelings      
Awareness Raised for Czech      
Thought Provoking For other Cultures      



This exercise was very useful to get our ducks in a row by quantifying the programming events and ideas and setting a task priority. The Busi(wo)Mans gave the first “outside” view of our work so far and stimulated our thoughts by asking questions, raising concerns and providing constructive criticism. I am looking forward to our next visit in early July when we will discuss the program tasks and project dependencies.


1 Comment »

  1. With the information in this blog I came to know about the importance of PMP Certification for a Project Management Professional.

    Comment by Project Management Course — June 9, 2009 @ 7:43 am

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Greetings! I hope you find our site engaging. We are working on a Czech-American public history project and trying to find out about as much Czech culture as we can. I am working on this project as a graduate student of Historic Preservation and enjoy uncovering the traditions of past and making the connections to the present. - M.Ogle







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