In this chapter
If you were to ask anyone off the street what they think of when they hear "project management," you are likely to hear "planning." And if you further ask them what they mean by "planning," you are likely to hear "schedule" or "work plan." Yes, even to the uninitiated, people know that project managers "plan" and develop "work schedules," if they do nothing else.
Yet, the process of understanding all the work that needs to be done and building a realistic project schedule continues to be the Achilles' heel of project management.
In this chapter, we begin our close review of the schedule development process by understanding the power and the purpose of the work breakdown structure (WBS). By performing this step correctly, we will do a much better job at the other detail project planning activities such as identifying resources, identifying risks, getting better estimates, building a realistic schedule, and developing an accurate project budget. In addition, a solid WBS allows us to better manage stakeholder expectations and the critical success factors throughout the project life cycle.
As part of this review, we will clarify exactly what a WBS is (and is not), we will understand why the WBS is crucial to our other project management activities, and we will learn how to develop an effective WBS and avoid the common miscues in this arena.
Part i. Project Management Jumpstart
Project Management Overview
The Project Manager
Essential Elements for any Successful Project
Part ii. Project Planning
Defining a Project
Planning a Project
Developing the Work Breakdown Structure
Estimating the Work
Developing the Project Schedule
Determining the Project Budget
Part iii. Project Control
Controlling a Project
Managing Project Changes
Managing Project Deliverables
Managing Project Issues
Managing Project Risks
Managing Project Quality
Part iv. Project Execution
Leading a Project
Managing Project Communications
Keys to Better Project Team Performance
Ending a Project