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


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

Article 7 of 7

By Alan Stretton

Sydney, Australia


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.


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)



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/.