Manager Interface

The utilization of management controls, such as those outlined in Section 11.23, does not necessarily guarantee successful project planning. Good project planning, as well as other project functions, requires a good working relationship between the project and line managers. At this interface:

• The project manager answers these questions:

• When will the task be done? (using the summary schedule)

• How much money is available? (using the SOW)

• The line manager answers these questions:

• How will the task be done? (i.e., technical criteria)

• Where will the task be done? (i.e., technical criteria)

Project managers may be able to tell line managers "how" and "where," provided that the information appears in the SOW as a requirement for the project. Even then, the line manager can take exception based on his technical expertise.

Figures 11-15 and 11-16 show what can happen when project managers overstep their bounds. In Figure 11-15, the manufacturing manager built a brick wall to keep the project managers away from his personnel because the project managers were telling his line people how to do their job. In Figure 11-16, the subproject managers (for simplicity's sake, equivalent to project engineers) would have, as their career path, promotions to assistant project managers (APMs). Unfortunately, the APMs still felt that they were technically competent enough to give technical direction, and this created havoc for the engineering managers.

The simplest solution to all of these problems is for the project manager to provide the technical direction through the line managers. After all, the line managers are supposedly the true technical experts.

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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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