Introduction

All companies desire to achieve maturity and excellence in project management. Unfortunately, not all companies recognize that the timeframe can be shortened by performing strategic planning for project management. The simple use of project management, even for an extended period of time, does not necessarily lead to excellence. Instead, it can result in repetitive mistakes and, what's worse, learning from your own mistakes rather than from the mistakes of others.

Companies such as Motorola, Nortel, Ericsson, and Compaq perform strategic planning for project management, and the results are self-explanatory. What Nortel and Ericsson have accomplished from 1992 to 1998, other companies have not achieved in 20 years of using project management.

Strategic planning for project management is unlike other forms of strategic planning in that it is most often performed at the middle-management, rather than executive-management. Executive level management is still involved, mostly in a supporting role, and provides funding together with employee release time for the effort. Executive involvement will be necessary to make sure that whatever is recommended by middle management will not result in unwanted changes to the corporate culture.

Organizations tend to perform strategic planning for new products and services by laying out a well-thought-out plan and then executing the plan with the precision of a surgeon. Unfortunately, strategic planning for project management, if performed at all, is done on a trial-by-fire basis. However, there are models that can be used to assist corporations in performing strategic planning for project management and achieving maturity and excellence in a reasonable period of time.

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