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The Definitive Guide to Project Management: Every executives fast-track to delivering on time and on budget

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The Definitive Guide to Project Management: Every executives fast-track to delivering on time and on budget


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  • Project management is a perennial best selling topic.
  • A practical, developed at the coal face, product.
  • Anyone who reads this book will get better at project management.


  • Copyright 2003
  • Dimensions: 6x9
  • Pages: 256
  • Edition: 1st
  • Book
  • ISBN-10: 0-273-66397-6
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-273-66397-3

Knowing that you're managing a project that is going well is a good feeling.

That moment when you know that its going to happen on time, that its avoided the pitfalls and delays that could have derailed it, and that people and resources have come together surely and smoothly, is a moment to savour. Fortunately, its a very achievable moment if you have mastered the tools and techniques of great project management.

Developed from the day-to-day experiences of real project managers facing real organizational and logistical challenges, this book is designed to put you on a fast-track to managing projects of every shape and size with speed and accuracy.

The Definitive Guide to Project Management will show you, step by step, how to deliver  the right projects in the right way at the right time, while keeping your life balance. Using the principles of both traditional and critical chain project management, the authors help you master the essentials of good project management and then explore the sitiations where good projects and good business meet. How to manage risks and politics; how to demonstrate the value added by a project; how to communicate upwards and downwards in project teams; how to energize projects; how to turn failing projects around; and how to spot likely problem projects. As well as covering all the conceptual tools needed for project management, this book pays special attention to the soft issues involved - how to manage the people side of project management.

Inside you will find key questions, step-by-step guidance and action checklists to help with each stage of a well-executed project:

  • Before you start
  • Planning
  • Preliminary Definition
  • Full Definition
  • Design
  • Build and test
  • Implementation
  • Shutdown and review

With The Definitive Guide to Project Management, you can deliver results on time, every time.

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Table of Contents

List of Figures xi
Checklists xiii
Cases xiii
Preface xv

Part I / Background information

Introduction 3
Imagine ¿ 5
About this book 5
Projects 8
Project life cycle outline 16
Basic principles 21
Business principles 23
Management and control principles 25
People principles 30

Part II / Project management processes

Project organization and team 37
What do we mean by project organization and team? 39
Project roles 39
Team management 43
Everyday basics and administration 53
What do we mean by everyday basics and administration? 55
Time recording 55
Meetings 56
Project file 59
Document version control 61
Purchasing authority 62
Planning 63
What do we mean by planning? 65
Why plan? 65
Planning tools 66
Work breakdown structure 68
Gantt/Project timeline charts 71
Network (PERT) diagrams 78
Planning process 81
Re-planning and speeding-up the project 90
Monitoring and control 97
What do we mean by monitoring and control? 99
Information gathering 99
Using the project plan 102
Problem diagnosis and resolution 108
Scope management and risk management 115
Scope management 117
Scope creep 117
The issue log 119
Scope management process 120
Risk management 122
Sources of risk 122
Risk control 124
Risk management process 126

Part III / Project life cycle stages

Define 133
What is the define phase? 135
Objectives 136
Scope 137
Starting inputs 138
Deliverables 138
Responsibilities 138
Process 140
Design 155
What is the design phase? 157
Objectives 157
Scope 158
Starting inputs 158
Deliverables 158
Responsibilities 159
Process 160
Build and test 167
What is the build and test phase? 169
Objectives 169
Scope 170
Starting inputs 170
Deliverables 170
Responsibilities 171
Process 172
Implement and review 177
What is the implement phase? 179
Objectives 179
Scope 179
Starting inputs 180
Deliverables 180
Responsibilities 180
Process 182
What is the review phase? 186
Objectives 186
Scope 186
Starting inputs 187
Deliverables 187
Responsibilities 187
Process 188

Appendix A: The critical chain method 191
Understanding activity durations 191
Criticial chain and activity durations 193
Focus on critical activities 195
The project buffer as a diagnostic 198
Action summary 200

Appendix B: Classic planning and progress
measurement tools 203
Critical path and PERT plans 203
Progress measurement 209

Appendix C: Managing large and complex projects 213

Appendix D: Project planning software tools 217
Tools for single projects 218
Tools for multi-project environments 219

Glossary 221

Index 224


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