by Lou Russell

In today’s streamlined organizations, project management is no longer just the domain of the specialist. Now just about everyone is required to play the project manager role. At the same time, this growing need doesn't necessarily require certifications, Gantt charts, or the Critical Path Method. Instead, what’s really needed is a basic, solid skill set that can be applied to everyday work. 

Here’s the training solution that will provide just the right amount of insight. From subject matter expert Lou Russell, Rocket: The Project Management Game, a competitive team simulation that emphasizes simple, fast, and flexible techniques for ensuring project success.

What makes Rocket such an effective learning experience is the combination of an actual hands-on team challenge and Russell’s four-step Dare to Properly Manage Resources model. Through game play, participants learn very quickly the importance of each phase, from planning to completion as well as the need to practice what’s referred to as flexible structure.

Learning Outcomes

  • Experience firsthand the skills required to manage projects effectively
  • Understand the various challenges of project management
  • Realize how to leverage personal strengths to improve project communication
  • Learn how to apply the DARE model of project management

How it Works

At the heart of the game is a construction project – you guess it, a rocket! Project teams are faced with the challenge of building to exact specifications, given only limited knowledge and resources – and they’re expected to complete the project both on budget and on time. While on the surface, it may seem like a somewhat simple task, tension and pressure grow as information is revealed and team dynamics emerge. 

The Rocket Game Kit includes everything you need to train up to 16 players at one time. All parts are reusable.

Product Type: Game

Objective: To learn a basic project management process

Time Required: 2 hours

Rocket is based on the global industry standard, Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK), and it supports project management as defined by the American Society of Training and Development’s Certified Professional in Learning and Performance (CPLP).


Lou Russell is president and CEO of Russell Martin & Associates. She is the author of The Accelerated Learning Fieldbook, Project Management for Trainers, IT Leadership Alchemy, Leadership Training, and 10 Steps to Successful Project Management. She is a frequent contributor to Computer World, Cutter Executive Reports, and Network World, among others, and publishes the monthly Learning Flash electronic newsletter. 

A popular speaker, Lou addresses national and international conferences such as the Project Management Institute, Project World, and LotuSphere. She holds a computer science degree from Purdue University, where she taught database and programming classes, and a Masters in Instructional Technology from Indiana University.