You know what projects are, so what's project management? I can hear you sighing and saying, "It's just the management of a project." And I'd concur, but your exam will likely need a bit more information than that. The PMBOK defines project management as "the application of knowledge, skills, tools, and techniques to meet project requirements."
Managing a project centers on four things:
• Identifying your project's requirements
• Establishing clearly defined project objectives
• Managing project stakeholders by adapting your plans and approaches to keep those folks happy and the project moving along
• Keeping scope, schedule, costs, and quality all in balance
This last point really defines the Iron Triangle of Project Management. Sometimes this is also called the Triple Constraints of Project Management. Figure 1-5 demonstrates the Iron Triangle's concept: All three sides must remain in balance or the project's quality or other facets will suffer. It's not rocket science: If your scope is enormous but your budget and/or schedule is puny, your project will likely suffer, or even fail. Chapters 5, 6, and 7 in this book (and in the PMBOK) focus on these three constraints of scope, time, and cost, so you'll see the Iron Triangle at least three more times.
Back to the PMBOK (PMBOK, Section 1.4)
I follow the PMBOK section by section throughout this whole book. Oh, boy. Of course, I take the PMBOK and expound on it just a bit—I hope you like it. This section is a reflection of the PMBOK's navel-gazing. For some reason, the authors of the PMBOK interject a logical discussion on project management with a pondering on how their book is organized. Okay. You won't be tested on this specifically, but gosh-golly, it's helpful to know as you organize your thoughts and study strategy. So here's the scoop:
• Section 1: The Project Management Framework is made up of the first two PMBOK chapters:
• Chapter 1: The Introduction sets the tone and paints the big picture of what the PMBOK can do for you. It's breezy and gets you moving into the book, kind of like this chapter.
• Chapter 2: The Project Life Cycle and Organization discusses the environment where projects happen. The project life cycle describes the phases a project moves through to get from start to completion.
• Section 2: The Standard for Project Management of a Project is a whopper of a section with one chapter: Chapter 3: Project Management Processes for a Project. It discusses the 44 project management processes and the five process
Time, cost, and scope comprise the Iron Triangle of Project Management.
groups they live within. It's meaty, and we'll discuss it in depth in Chapter 3 of this book.
• Section 3: The Project Management Knowledge Areas has nine chapters, and each knowledge area gets it own chapter in the PMBOK. Here's a brief overview of each chapter:
• Chapter 4: Project Integration Management defines how each knowledge area is affected by the control and outcome of the other knowledge areas. It's the gears of project management.
• Chapter 5: Project Scope Management defines how a project manager should create, monitor, control, and complete the project scope.
• Chapter 6: Project Time Management defines how the project manager should estimate the project duration, create the schedule, do some fancy math problems with time, and control and react to all aspects of managing the project schedule.
• Chapter 7: Project Cost Management focuses on the project budget and how it is estimated, spent, audited, and controlled through the project. Cha-ching!
• Chapter 8: Project Quality Management centers on defining and adhering to the quality expectations of the project stakeholders. We'll examine a whole bunch of charts that measure quality within a project.
• Chapter 9: Project Human Resources Management delves into the methods to organize, lead, and manage your project team. We'll also discuss some philosophies and human resource theories.
• Chapter 10: Project Communications Management is all about how a project manager should gather, create, and disperse project information. The basic theme for this chapter is who needs what information, when do they need it, and in what modality.
• Chapter 11: Project Risk Management describes how you, your project team, and other experts will identify, analyze, and plan responses to risks within your project. We'll cover risk matrixes, contingency reserves, and ways to track risks within your project.
• Chapter 12: Project Procurement Management is all about buying the products and services your project may need to be successful. Procurement management includes obtaining acquisitions, selecting sellers, and creating contracts. Get your wallet ready.
• Chapter 13, in this book, doesn't correspond directly to the PMBOK, but correlates to PMI's Code of Conduct. I'll explain how you can answer these questions directly and accurately for your exam. Keep in mind that the Code of Conduct for both the PMP and the CAPM candidates are one-page documents, but you'll have several exam questions on ethics and on adhering to PMI's professional code. I'm certain you'll do fine.
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What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.