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Some “Technical” Management Functions and Activities; Summary of Series

SERIES ARTICLE

Series on general management functions and activities, and their relevance to the management of projects

Article 7 of 7

By Alan Stretton

Sydney, Australia


BACKGROUND TO THIS SERIES

General management provides the foundation for building project management skills and is often essential for the project manager. On any given project, skill in any number of general management areas may be required. General management literature documents these skills, and their application is fundamentally the same on a project.                 (PMI 2004:15)

This is the final in a series of seven articles which have been primarily concerned with the part played by general management skills in effective project management. Some aspects of general management are reasonably well covered in the project management literature, but others not so well. This series has presented a broad coverage of traditional/ classical materials on general management, with the primary intention of trying to help project managers fill in gaps in their knowledge of relevant general management issues, either directly, or by guidance to sources.

Another aim of this series has been to look at various ways in which the functions and component activities of general management are relevant to the management of projects. I have tended to focus on materials in general management and project management that I have found to be most relevant and/or useful.

The first article of the series (Stretton 2015g) presented a general management knowledge framework, whose main functions are represented in the diagram on the right. The next five articles (Stretton 2015h, i, j, k, l) developed the classical/ traditional functions of management planning, organizing, leading, staffing, and implementing/ controlling, and their component activities.

This seventh article will first look at “technical” management functions, and briefly discuss their relevance to projects. The main component of this final article will then be a summary of the entire series on general management and project management.

More…

To read entire article (click here)

Editor’s note: This series of articles on general management principles applied to project management is by Alan Stretton, PhD (Hon), Life Fellow of AIPM (Australia), a pioneer in the field of professional project management and one of the most widely recognized voices in the practice of program and project management.   Long retired, Alan is still accepting some of the most challenging research and writing assignments; he is a frequent contributor to the PM World Journal. See his author profile below.

 


 

About the Author

pmwj34-May2015-Stretton-PHOTOAlan Stretton, PhD

Faculty Corps, University of Management
and Technology, Arlington, VA (USA)
Life Fellow, AIPM (Australia)

flag-australia

 



Alan Stretton
is one of the pioneers of modern project management. He is currently a member of the Faculty Corps for the University of Management & Technology (UMT), USA. In 2006 he retired from a position as Adjunct Professor of Project Management in the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), Australia, which he joined in 1988 to develop and deliver a Master of Project Management program.   Prior to joining UTS, Mr. Stretton worked in the building and construction industries in Australia, New Zealand and the USA for some 38 years, which included the project management of construction, R&D, introduction of information and control systems, internal management education programs and organizational change projects. He has degrees in Civil Engineering (BE, Tasmania) and Mathematics (MA, Oxford), and an honorary PhD in strategy, programme and project management (ESC, Lille, France). Alan was Chairman of the Standards (PMBOK) Committee of the Project Management Institute (PMI®) from late 1989 to early 1992. He held a similar position with the Australian Institute of Project Management (AIPM), and was elected a Life Fellow of AIPM in 1996. He was a member of the Core Working Group in the development of the Australian National Competency Standards for Project Management. He has published over 160 professional articles and papers. Alan can be contacted at [email protected].

To see more works by Alan Stretton, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/alan-stretton/.

 

Management Implementing/Controlling Functions and Activities

 

SERIES ARTICLE

Series on general management functions and activities, and their relevance to the management of projects

Article 6 of 7

By Alan Stretton

Sydney, Australia

________________________________________________________________________

 

BACKGROUND TO THIS SERIES

General management provides the foundation for building project management skills and is often essential for the project manager. On any given project, skill in any number of general management areas may be required. General management literature documents these skills, and their application is fundamentally the same on a project.                 (PMI 2004:15)

The importance of general management skills in the management of projects is widely acknowledged, as is reflected in the above quotation. Some aspects of general management are already quite well covered in the project management literature, but others not so well.

This series is primarily concerned with presenting a broad coverage of traditional/ classical materials on general management, which hopefully may fill in some of the gaps in current coverage in the project management literature. Its intention is to help project managers either directly, or by guiding them to relevant sources.

Another aim of this series is to look at various ways in which the functions and component activities of general management are relevant to the management of projects. I have tended to focus on materials that I have found to be most relevant and/or useful in over sixty years’ experience in both forms of management.

The first article of the series (Stretton 2015g) presented a general management knowledge framework, summarised on the right (see full paper for exhibit). The second, third, fourth and fifth articles (Stretton 2015h, i, j, k) developed the classical/traditional functions of management planning, organizing, leading, and staffing.

This sixth article is concerned with the function of management implementing/controlling, with the main focus on controlling, and its component activities.

More…

To read entire article (click here)

Editor’s note: This series of articles on general management principles applied to project management is by Alan Stretton, PhD (Hon), Life Fellow of AIPM (Australia), a pioneer in the field of professional project management and one of the most widely recognized voices in the practice of program and project management.   Long retired, Alan is still accepting some of the most challenging research and writing assignments; he is a frequent contributor to the PM World Journal. See his author profile below.


 

About the Author

141215-pmwj30-new-stretton-PHOTOAlan Stretton, PhD

Faculty Corps, University of Management
and Technology, Arlington, VA (USA)

Life Fellow, AIPM (Australia)

flag-australia


Alan Stretton
is one of the pioneers of modern project management. He is currently a member of the Faculty Corps for the University of Management & Technology (UMT), USA. In 2006 he retired from a position as Adjunct Professor of Project Management in the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), Australia, which he joined in 1988 to develop and deliver a Master of Project Management program.   Prior to joining UTS, Mr. Stretton worked in the building and construction industries in Australia, New Zealand and the USA for some 38 years, which included the project management of construction, R&D, introduction of information and control systems, internal management education programs and organizational change projects. He has degrees in Civil Engineering (BE, Tasmania) and Mathematics (MA, Oxford), and an honorary PhD in strategy, programme and project management (ESC, Lille, France). Alan was Chairman of the Standards (PMBOK) Committee of the Project Management Institute (PMI®) from late 1989 to early 1992. He held a similar position with the Australian Institute of Project Management (AIPM), and was elected a Life Fellow of AIPM in 1996. He was a member of the Core Working Group in the development of the Australian National Competency Standards for Project Management. He has published over 160 professional articles and papers. Alan can be contacted at [email protected].

To see more works by Alan Stretton, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/alan-stretton/.

Management Staffing Function and Activities

SERIES ARTICLE

Series on general management functions and activities, and their relevance to the management of projects
Article 5 of 7

By Alan Stretton

Sydney, Australia

 


 

BACKGROUND TO THIS SERIES

General management provides the foundation for building project management skills and is often essential for the project manager. On any given project, skill in any number of general management areas may be required. General management literature documents these skills, and their application is fundamentally the same on a project.                  (PMI 2004:15)

The above quotation reflects the widely acknowledged importance of general management skills in the management of projects. However, the coverage of such general management skills in the project management literature is uneven. Some aspects are quite well covered, but others less so.

This series is primarily concerned with presenting a broad coverage of traditional/ classical materials on general management, which hopefully may fill in some of the gaps in current coverage in the project management literature. Its intention is to help project managers either directly, or by guiding them to sources for more detailed coverage of particular general management materials.

Another aim of this series is to look at various ways in which the functions and component activities of general management are relevant to the management of projects. I have tended to focus on materials that I have found to be most relevant and/or useful in over sixty years’ experience in both forms of management

The first article of the series (Stretton 2015g) presented a management knowledge framework, whose main functions are summarized on the right. The second article (Stretton 2015h) developed the “basic” function of management planning, the third (Stretton 2015i) management organizing, and the fourth (Stretton 2015j) management leading.

This fifth article discusses the function of management staffing, and its component activities, selecting people and developing people, and discusses their relevance to the management of projects.

More…

To read entire article (click here)

Editor’s note: This series of articles on general management principles applied to project management is by Alan Stretton, PhD (Hon), Life Fellow of AIPM (Australia), a pioneer in the field of professional project management and one of the most widely recognized voices in the practice of program and project management.   Long retired, Alan is still accepting some of the most challenging research and writing assignments; he is a frequent contributor to the PM World Journal. See his author profile below.

 


 

About the Author

 

pmwj35-Jun2015-Stretton-PHOTOAlan Stretton, PhD

Faculty Corps, University of Management
and Technology, Arlington, VA (USA)
Life Fellow, AIPM (Australia)

flag-australia

 


Alan Stretton
is one of the pioneers of modern project management. He is currently a member of the Faculty Corps for the University of Management & Technology (UMT), USA. In 2006 he retired from a position as Adjunct Professor of Project Management in the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), Australia, which he joined in 1988 to develop and deliver a Master of Project Management program.  

Prior to joining UTS, Mr. Stretton worked in the building and construction industries in Australia, New Zealand and the USA for some 38 years, which included the project management of construction, R&D, introduction of information and control systems, internal management education programs and organizational change projects.

He has degrees in Civil Engineering (BE, Tasmania) and Mathematics (MA, Oxford), and an honorary PhD in strategy, programme and project management (ESC, Lille, France). Alan was Chairman of the Standards (PMBOK) Committee of the Project Management Institute (PMI®) from late 1989 to early 1992. He held a similar position with the Australian Institute of Project Management (AIPM), and was elected a Life Fellow of AIPM in 1996. He was a member of the Core Working Group in the development of the Australian National Competency Standards for Project Management.

He has published over 150 professional articles and papers. Alan can be contacted at [email protected].

To see more works by Alan Stretton, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/alan-stretton/.

 

Management Leading Function and Activities

SERIES ARTICLE

Series on general management functions and activities, and their relevance to the management of projects
Article 4 of 7

By Alan Stretton

Sydney, Australia


BACKGROUND TO THIS SERIES

General management provides the foundation for building project management skills and is often essential for the project manager. On any given project, skill in any number of general management areas may be required. General management literature documents these skills, and their application is fundamentally the same on a project.                (PMI 2004:15)

This is the fourth in a series of seven articles which are primarily concerned with filling in some gaps in the coverage of general management in the project management literature. The widely acknowledged importance of general management to the management of projects is reflected in the lead quotation.

This series presents a broad coverage of traditional/ classical materials on general management. Its intention is to help project managers fill in gaps in their knowledge of relevant general management issues, either directly, or by guidance to sources for more detailed coverage of particular general management materials.

Another aim of this series is to look at various ways in which the functions and component activities of general management are relevant to the management of projects. I have tended to focus on materials that I have found to be most relevant and/or useful in over sixty years’ experience in both general management and project management.

The first article of the series (Stretton 2015g) proposed a management knowledge framework, whose main functions are summarized on the right. The second article (Stretton 2015h) developed the “basic” function of management planning, and the third article (Stretton 2015i) discussed management organizing.

This fourth article discusses the function of management leading, and its component activities, management decision making, management communicating, and management motivating, and discusses their relevance to the management of projects.

More…

To read entire article (click here)

Editor’s note: This series of articles on general management principles applied to project management is by Alan Stretton, PhD (Hon), Life Fellow of AIPM (Australia), a pioneer in the field of professional project management and one of the most widely recognized voices in the practice of program and project management.   Long retired, Alan is still accepting some of the most challenging research and writing assignments; he is a frequent contributor to the PM World Journal. See his author profile below.

 


 

About the Author

 

pmwj36-Jul2015-Stretton-PHOTOAlan Stretton, PhD

Faculty Corps, University of Management
and Technology, Arlington, VA (USA)
Life Fellow, AIPM (Australia)

flag-australia

 

 

Alan Stretton is one of the pioneers of modern project management. He is currently a member of the Faculty Corps for the University of Management & Technology (UMT), USA. In 2006 he retired from a position as Adjunct Professor of Project Management in the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), Australia, which he joined in 1988 to develop and deliver a Master of Project Management program.   Prior to joining UTS, Mr. Stretton worked in the building and construction industries in Australia, New Zealand and the USA for some 38 years, which included the project management of construction, R&D, introduction of information and control systems, internal management education programs and organizational change projects. He has degrees in Civil Engineering (BE, Tasmania) and Mathematics (MA, Oxford), and an honorary PhD in strategy, programme and project management (ESC, Lille, France). Alan was Chairman of the Standards (PMBOK) Committee of the Project Management Institute (PMI®) from late 1989 to early 1992. He held a similar position with the Australian Institute of Project Management (AIPM), and was elected a Life Fellow of AIPM in 1996. He was a member of the Core Working Group in the development of the Australian National Competency Standards for Project Management. He has published over 150 professional articles and papers. Alan can be contacted at [email protected].

To see more works by Alan Stretton, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/alan-stretton/.

 

Management Organizing Function and Activities

SERIES ARTICLE

Series on general management functions and activities, and their relevance to the management of projects

Article 3 of 7

By Alan Stretton

Sydney, Australia


 

 BACKGROUND TO THIS SERIES

General management provides the foundation for building project management skills and is often essential for the project manager. On any given project, skill in any number of general management areas may be required. General management literature documents these skills, and their application is fundamentally the same on a project.                (PMI 2004:15)

As noted in the two previous articles of this series, this lead quotation reflects the widely acknowledged importance of general management skills in the management of projects. The coverage of general management skills in the project management literature is somewhat uneven. Some aspects are quite well covered, others less so.

This series of articles is primarily concerned with presenting a broad coverage of traditional/ classical materials on general management, which hopefully may fill in some of the gaps in current coverage in the project management literature, and help project managers either directly, or by pointing to sources for more detailed coverage of particular general management materials.

Another aim of this series is to look in a little more detail at various ways in which the functions and component activities of general management are relevant to the management of projects. I have tended to focus on materials that I have found to be most relevant and/or useful in over sixty years’ experience in both general management and project management

The first article of the series (Stretton 2015g) proposed a general management knowledge framework, as summarized on the right. The second article (Stretton 2015h) developed the “basic” general management function of planning, and its component activities, and discussed their relevance to the management of projects. This third article discusses the function of management organizing, and its component activities, developing organization structure, management delegation, and establishing relationships.

MANAGEMENT ORGANIZING

Definitions and components of management organizing

Management Organizing: the work a manager performs to arrange and relate the work to be done so that it may be performed most effectively by people.       (Allen 1964:163)

Allen identifies three primary component activities of management organizing:

  • Developing Organization Structure: The work a manager does to identify and group the work to be performed.
  • Management Delegation: The work a manager performs to entrust responsibility and authority to others, and to establish accountability for results.
  • Establishing Relationships: The work a manager performs to create the conditions necessary for mutually cooperative efforts of people.

MANAGEMENT ORGANIZING OVERVIEW

One of the key differences between organizations in the general management context and projects is that the former is generally concerned with permanent organizations, whilst projects are temporary organizations. The latter are a particular interest of the Scandinavian School of project management (Morris 2013:69).

However, most, if not all, permanent organizations undertake projects. In this context we distinguish between two types of such permanent organizations. I follow Cooke-Davies 2002 in describing these as production-based organizations and project-based organizations, and borrow from Archibald et al 2012 (who use different descriptors) in defining them:

More…

To read entire article (click here)

Editor’s note: This series of articles on general management principles applied to project management is by Alan Stretton, PhD (Hon), Life Fellow of AIPM (Australia), a pioneer in the field of professional project management and one of the most widely recognized voices in the practice of program and project management.   Long retired, Alan is still accepting some of the most challenging research and writing assignments; he is a frequent contributor to the PM World Journal. See his author profile below.

 


 

About the Author

 

pmwj36-Jul2015-Stretton-PHOTOAlan Stretton, PhD

Faculty Corps, University of Management
and Technology, Arlington, VA (USA)
Life Fellow, AIPM (Australia)

flag-australia

 


Alan Stretton
is one of the pioneers of modern project management. He is currently a member of the Faculty Corps for the University of Management & Technology (UMT), USA. In 2006 he retired from a position as Adjunct Professor of Project Management in the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), Australia, which he joined in 1988 to develop and deliver a Master of Project Management program.   Prior to joining UTS, Mr. Stretton worked in the building and construction industries in Australia, New Zealand and the USA for some 38 years, which included the project management of construction, R&D, introduction of information and control systems, internal management education programs and organizational change projects. He has degrees in Civil Engineering (BE, Tasmania) and Mathematics (MA, Oxford), and an honorary PhD in strategy, programme and project management (ESC, Lille, France). Alan was Chairman of the Standards (PMBOK) Committee of the Project Management Institute (PMI®) from late 1989 to early 1992. He held a similar position with the Australian Institute of Project Management (AIPM), and was elected a Life Fellow of AIPM in 1996. He was a member of the Core Working Group in the development of the Australian National Competency Standards for Project Management. He has published over 150 professional articles and papers. Alan can be contacted at [email protected].

To see more works by Alan Stretton, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/alan-stretton/.

 

Management Planning Function and Activities

 

SERIES ARTICLE

Series on general management functions and activities, and their relevance to the management of projects
Article 2 of 7

By Alan Stretton

Sydney, Australia

________________________________________________________________________


BACKGROUND TO THIS SERIES

General management provides the foundation for building project management skills and is often essential for the project manager. On any given project, skill in any number of general management areas may be required. General management literature documents these skills, and their application is fundamentally the same on a project.                      (PMI 2004:15)

This lead quotation, which will head all the articles in this series, reflects the widely acknowledged importance of general management skills in the management of projects. Yet the coverage of such general management skills in the project management literature is rather uneven. Therefore, as is implied in the last sentence of the above quotation, project managers would need to access the general management literature to fill in gaps in their knowledge and skills.

However, the general management literature is very voluminous, and finding the sought-after materials not necessarily easy. This suggested to me that it could be useful to present an overview of basic general management materials, which might help project managers directly, and/or help guide them towards more detailed relevant materials. This is the main aim of this series.

Another aim is to look in a little more detail at various ways in which the functions and component activities of general management are relevant to the management of projects. I have tended to focus on materials I found to be most relevant/useful in over sixty years of experience in both general management and project management.

The first article of this series (Stretton 2015g) proposed a basic general management knowledge framework, based on traditional/ classical management materials as they developed up to around the mid-1980s.

Although there have been many developments in management literature and practice since then, this framework is still widely quoted today, and its materials still underlie most modern management practices. The main functions of this framework are summarized on the right.

More…

To read entire article (click here)

Editor’s note: This series of articles on general management principles applied to project management is by Alan Stretton, PhD (Hon), Life Fellow of AIPM (Australia), a pioneer in the field of professional project management and one of the most widely recognized voices in the practice of program and project management.   Long retired, Alan is still accepting some of the most challenging research and writing assignments; he is a frequent contributor to the PM World Journal. See his author profile below.

 



About the Author


pmwj36-Jul2015-Stretton-PHOTOAlan Stretton, PhD

Faculty Corps, University of Management
and Technology, Arlington, VA (USA)
Life Fellow, AIPM (Australia)

flag-australia

 


Alan Stretton
is one of the pioneers of modern project management. He is currently a member of the Faculty Corps for the University of Management & Technology (UMT), USA. In 2006 he retired from a position as Adjunct Professor of Project Management in the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), Australia, which he joined in 1988 to develop and deliver a Master of Project Management program.   Prior to joining UTS, Mr. Stretton worked in the building and construction industries in Australia, New Zealand and the USA for some 38 years, which included the project management of construction, R&D, introduction of information and control systems, internal management education programs and organizational change projects. He has degrees in Civil Engineering (BE, Tasmania) and Mathematics (MA, Oxford), and an honorary PhD in strategy, programme and project management (ESC, Lille, France). Alan was Chairman of the Standards (PMBOK) Committee of the Project Management Institute (PMI®) from late 1989 to early 1992. He held a similar position with the Australian Institute of Project Management (AIPM), and was elected a Life Fellow of AIPM in 1996. He was a member of the Core Working Group in the development of the Australian National Competency Standards for Project Management. He has published over 150 professional articles and papers. Alan can be contacted at [email protected].

To see more works by Alan Stretton, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/alan-stretton/.

 

A general management framework, and its relevance to managing the project life cycle

 

SERIES ARTICLE

Series on general management functions and activities, and their relevance to the management of projects

Article 1 of 7

By Alan Stretton

Sydney, Australia

________________________________________________________________________

BACKGROUND TO THIS SERIES

General management provides the foundation for building project management skills and is often essential for the project manager. On any given project, skill in any number of general management areas may be required. General management literature documents these skills, and their application is fundamentally the same on a project.                 (PMI 2004:15)

As is indicated in this lead quotation, the importance of general management in the management of projects is widely acknowledged. However, its treatment in the project management literature is uneven. Key bodies of knowledge and competency standards of project management differ in their coverage of general management, as do books and other relevant publications. Overall, some aspects of general management are quite well covered, but others not so well.

It is also implied in the lead quotation that project managers can access the general management literature to fill in gaps in their knowledge and skills in this domain. However, this is easier said than done. The general management literature is voluminous, and it is not necessarily easy to quickly access the materials sought.

This suggested to me that it might be useful to present an overview of basic general management materials, which may help project managers directly, and/or help guide them towards more detailed relevant materials. However, it would be an enormous task – and well beyond my current capabilities – to cover all general management materials. I have therefore made a conscious choice to focus on traditional/ classical management materials as they developed up to around the mid-1980s. Although there have been many developments in management literature and practice since then, the framework I have chosen for presenting these materials is still widely quoted today, and its materials still underlie much current management practice.

This article first presents a figure illustrating the evolution of historical general management theories, and then establishes the traditional/ classical management framework used in this series of seven articles. This comprises “basic” management functions and their component activities, plus a group of “technical” management functions and activities. This article then shows how the “basic” management functions can be applied to the management of the phases of a project life cycle.

More…

To read entire article (click here)

 

Editor’s note: This series of articles on general management principles applied to project management is by Alan Stretton, PhD (Hon), Life Fellow of AIPM (Australia), a pioneer in the field of professional project management and one of the most widely recognized voices in the practice of program and project management.   Long retired, Alan is still accepting some of the most challenging research and writing assignments; he is a frequent contributor to the PM World Journal. See his author profile below.

 

About the Author

 

pmwj36-Jul2015-Stretton-PHOTOAlan Stretton, PhD

Faculty Corps, University of Management
and Technology, Arlington, VA (USA)
Life Fellow, AIPM (Australia)

flag-australia

 


Alan Stretton
is one of the pioneers of modern project management. He is currently a member of the Faculty Corps for the University of Management & Technology (UMT), USA. In 2006 he retired from a position as Adjunct Professor of Project Management in the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), Australia, which he joined in 1988 to develop and deliver a Master of Project Management program.   Prior to joining UTS, Mr. Stretton worked in the building and construction industries in Australia, New Zealand and the USA for some 38 years, which included the project management of construction, R&D, introduction of information and control systems, internal management education programs and organizational change projects. He has degrees in Civil Engineering (BE, Tasmania) and Mathematics (MA, Oxford), and an honorary PhD in strategy, programme and project management (ESC, Lille, France). Alan was Chairman of the Standards (PMBOK) Committee of the Project Management Institute (PMI®) from late 1989 to early 1992. He held a similar position with the Australian Institute of Project Management (AIPM), and was elected a Life Fellow of AIPM in 1996. He was a member of the Core Working Group in the development of the Australian National Competency Standards for Project Management. He has published over 150 professional articles and papers. Alan can be contacted at [email protected].

To see more works by Alan Stretton, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/alan-stretton/.