Toc Pmbok Lean and Six Sigma

PM Milestone Project Management Templates

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This book approaches the problem of improving project management from the perspective of synthesizing two domains of knowledge: the PMBOK™ [1] and the TOC. We consider this synthesis with perspectives from two other knowledge areas: Lean Manufacturing and Six Sigma. This chapter addresses each of these knowledge areas in order and illustrates their relationship to the overall CCPM approach.

These knowledge areas provide different reality filters, or paradigms, to understand the project system. Multiple perspectives enable deeper understanding of the theory underlying CCPM, which I define as the synthesis of Dr. Eliyahu Goldratt's critical-chain approach to schedules and the rest of the PMBOK™. The underlying theory enables you to deal with issues unique to your environment or project.

Figure 2.1 illustrates how the multiple perspectives on the project system might look at problems in project performance. The PMBOK™ perspective compares actual project system performance to the PMBOK™ model, which it assumes to be correct. Therefore, the PMBOK™ perspective is unlikely to blame elements of the PMBOK™ project system as the cause of the problems. It is much more likely to

System definition Knowledge areas Framework Processes


Waste elimination Customer focus Profound knowledge - System


Project system

Waste elimination Customer focus Profound knowledge - System

Project system

- Psychology

- Variation

- Theory of knowledge


Focusing steps Thinking process

Figure 2.1 Multiple knowledge areas increase perspective on the project system.

blame performance problems on failure to execute properly the (assumed) effective system. This is indeed the nature of much of the project-management literature, as described above. Dr. W. Edwards Deming has noted that you should not expect significant system changes to come from within the system. A natural consequence of solutions based on the PMBOK™ perspective is to "do more better."

Some people have fed back to me a misperception of my view of the PMBOK™ Guide, based in part on the previous paragraph. They asserted that I must not support the PMBOK™ Guide and/or all of the supporting literature. This view is incorrect. I believe that the PMBOK™ Guide represents the combined best knowledge of how to execute projects effectively, and I strongly encourage project managers to become expert in its use, including becoming project-management professionals (PMPs). I strongly support continuous improvement of the PMBOK™ Guide and have contributed to the last two versions. I view this book as part of my ongoing effort to improve project-management systems, and I expect the PMBOK™ Guide to embody some of the methods I describe here as they become more common. I also believe many of the elements of the PMBOK™ Guide are necessary conditions to successfully deploying CCPM and will identify them in the appropriate places.

Six Sigma and its predecessor, Total Quality Management (TQM), seek to continually improve every process, the later through projects that demonstrate a return on investment. These perspectives therefore tacitly assume that the best way to improve a system is to improve every process. A leading consideration in TQM (profound knowledge) provides four subperspectives leading to deeper understanding of the potential causes of project problems. TQM provides specific tools to perform root-cause analysis to identify the causes of problems and develops strategies to remove these causes.

The TOC perspective identifies the system constraint and works to improve its throughput. It provides a system view of projects and a specific theory to predict project performance and the impact of changes to the system. This perspective differs from the PMBOK™ view by considering the project system as a dynamic process to create completed projects. TOC looks at individual project tasks as the operation of a system for producing the result or output of the tasks. It focuses on the fact that the task-performance process includes natural variation and that individual project tasks interrelate.

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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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