Project Management

In this article we will review the historical background of this discipline (Project Management) while illustrating its meaning, importance, stages, processes, critical skills and how it is related to programme and portfolio management. History of Project Management Project Management has enabled leaders to plan bold and massive projects and manage funding, materials and labour within a designated time frame and this discipline was affected by the rise of certain managerial schools like the scientific management and the administrative one. The Father of Scientific Management Frederick Taylor examined his theories on employees’ productivity by inventing a methodology for the evaluation and measuring performance of certain tasks which were done by workers in factories. Henry Gantt   was the first to design charts and diagrams to document and measure the processes. _By charting and analysing we are able to see the big picture about the relationships between functions. _ The Gantt chart became an important tool for project management and was used for the last 100 years. Henri Fayol, A French Industrialist presented a management process consists of:
  • Planning       
  • Organising   
  • Commanding                               
  • Directing      
  • Controlling
  These schools influenced and shaped the early days of PM.

Why Project Management?

  • Better efficiency in delivering services
  • Improved/increased/enhanced customer satisfaction
  • Improve & development your team
  • Greater standing and competitive edge
  • Opportunities to expand your services
  • Better Flexibility
  • Increased risk assessment/ red flag
  • Increase in Quality
  • Increase in Quantity

The Relationship between Project Management, Programme Management and Portfolio Management

-Programme Management The management of a collection of projects related to some extent to achieve common objectives -Portfolio Management The management of a number of programmes that do NOT share common objectives -Projects & Strategic Planning Projects are always used as ways of reaching a corporation ‘strategic plan. Projects are mainly authorized as a consequence of one or more of the following strategic considerations
  • Market demand
  • Strategic opportunity/business need
  • Customer request
  • Technological advance
  • Legal requirements
  Project Management is accomplished through specific processes. Processes are a set of actions and activities that are performed to achieve specified objectives, products, results or service.

Types of processes

Initiating Process: Defines the project or a project phase. Planning Process: Defines objectives and plans required to achieve the objectives. Executing Process: Integrates people and other resources to carry out the Project Management plan. Monitoring and Controlling Process: Ensuring that the project objectives are met by monitoring and measuring processes.  Closing Process: Formalizing acceptance of the project and bring it to successful end and all of these steps are managed through the PM office.   Project Management Office (PMO) -PMO is an organizational unit to centralize and coordinate the management of project under its domain. PMO also referred to as a “project office” or “program office”. -PMO can operate on a continuum basis from providing project management support functions in the form of training, software, templates, etc. To actual direct management and responsibility for achieving the project objectives through certain skills and competences.

Knowledge and Skills needed for the PM

-Financial management and accounting -Purchasing and procurement -Sales and marketing -Contracts and commercial laws -Manufacturing and distribution -Logistics and supply Chain -Health and safety practices -Information technology

Interpersonal Skills

Effective Communication: The exchange of information between the sender and the receiver. Influencing the Organization: The “ability to get things done”. Leadership: conducting a mission, vision and dream and motivating people to succeed and perform well to achieve that vision and strategy. Motivation: igniting the flames of passion to push people to reach their aims and high levels of performance while overcoming resistance of change. Negotiation and conflict resolution: discussions with others to beneficial solutions to all parties and come to meetings to reach a win-win agreement. Problem solving: The fusion of problem clarification, identification, knowing its root cause and analysing symptoms, sequels to reach a solution and make a decision. Learn more about the relationship between MBA and PMP FROM HERE.

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