Project Constraints and Phases

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Because PMI is a well-respected organization in the project management world, I'll make frequent mention of their recommendations, techniques, definitions, and so forth in the discussions in this book. PMI has developed the "Bible" of project management, the

PMBOK® Guide, wherein you can find information you might be interested in relative to project management practices and techniques.

According to Steven Fahrenkrog, PMP, the current standards manager for PMI: The PMBOK® Guide is designed to provide a flexible structure and a common lexicon for talking about projects, to help people communicate using commonly accepted terminology to facilitate communication for project management professionals The PMBOK® Guide is written on a high level, the 10,000-foot view of the project. It is up to the project team to add, subtract, or supplement the processes and practices expressed, based on the specific circumstances and needs of their particular project. The idea behind PMI is to provide a framework in which project managers involved in projects ranging from very small to huge multiyear endeavors have a way of managing their projects. Obviously, a small project may not require the heft that a large project would require, so the PMBOK® Guide outlines best practices but doesn 't get into exactitude relative to a given type of project.

An essential aspect of this framework is that the characteristics of any project can be shown to fall into two general categories: constraints and phases. A constraint is something that could potentially limit the progress of a project, or impede it from starting at all. There are three basic constraints that all projects face: time, quality, and budget (sometimes labeled costs). In later chapters, I' l l spend time on the delicate balancing act that all projects undergo with these three constraints. There are other constraints, and I' l l talk about those later as well.

There are distinct phases to any project. A phase is a part or stage of the project process. While you may not explicitly delineate a phase as such within your project planning (meaning that you may not specifically say "and now the planning phase begins"), nevertheless good project management will cause these phases to manifest themselves. The phases I ll discuss are initiating, planning, executing, controlling, and closing. These phases are called process groups by PMI in A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge.

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Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

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.

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