An Extrapolation of the Model
As suggested in the introduction of this paper, the focus of management and project management has been evolving. Throughout recent history, project management has followed a trend from MBR to MBM to MBO to MBV, as illustrated in Figure 7.
Figure 7: The History of Project Management
The MBR mindset was important to the growth in business infrastructure, prominent from 1930 to 1960. During this period, the focus was on "institutionalizing" business practices, and with that came the development of rules, regulations, policies, procedures, directives, laws, acts, etc.
During the post war period of industrial growth, MBM approaches became the major focus. Modern project management practice was born with the development of the classical scheduling techniques such as the Gantt chart, PERT, and CPM developed in the 1950s.
With the proliferation of the transistor in the 1950s and the integrated circuit shortly thereafter, projects became more complex. With the development of sophisticated engineering systems, the objective was now to bring mechanics to life. The Department of Defense (U.S.) was a major driver of MBO. The advent of the cold war in the 1960s created demand for countermeasures that, as a matter of public security, pushed the envelope of technology, and drove project management into MBO. This was the era of cost/schedule control. The Project Management Institute (PMI®) was born in 1969, and the Project Management Professional (PMP®) certification started shortly thereafter.
With the proliferation of the microcomputer came the information age. The cold war ended, and the project management focus once again shifted, this time to MBV. As companies automated their business processes for the purposes of reducing cost and enhancing availability of information, the terminology changed with terms like CASE tool, business process reengineering (BPR), and Internet.
The future should be interesting with the approach of the next level, Level 5. An extrapolation of the model, as illustrated in Figure 8, would lead to a management approach where the essential values of the corporation are a dynamic baseline. This would entail dealing with some higher order issues perhaps Management by Politics (MBP), wherein project managers would contend with harmonizing various corporate agendas. With the current record number of acquisitions and mergers around the globe, perhaps this is Level 5 in action. However, if project management principles were to be employed in this effort, an extrapolation of the model would indicate an extremely low chance of success.
Figure 8: Extrapolation of the DBM
A Level 5, MBP would deal with an intangible product with a focus on governance issues. The LML at Level 5 would be, in essence, a politician. Such an individual would require a high affinity for ambiguity, a high EQ in Myers Briggs this would be an ESTP (Extroverted/Sensing/Thinking/Perceptive) or "Promoter," representing approximately 3% of the population at large.
6. Moder, J.J., C.R. Phillips & E.W. Davis, Project Management with CPM, PERT and Precedence Diagramming, 3rd Ed. Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1983