Published here May, 2006.

Introduction | Book Structure | What We Liked - Part 1 | What We Liked - Part 2
Downside - Part 1 | Downside - Part 2 | Summary


This book is well-written, well set out and easy to follow. It tries hard to integrate project management into a difficult technological environment. So, if you are working in the information systems and product technology development fields where the understanding and conduct of project management is relatively less mature, then this book provides many valuable insights.

Indeed, the book is laced with some eighty "Agile Strategies", one of which probably gives the key to your success in the industry, namely:

"Act as an information manifold to efficiently distribute the distilled information to the appropriate team members. This highly valuable role provides a key linkage between the project and its external environment, and it puts you in front of both the project team and sponsors."[29]

So, if what you want is visibility to move up the corporate ladder and build relationships, then this is the book for you. Without question, that personal strategy is very common in the corporate world, and not necessarily a bad thing. That is - find out what the (most important) people want - and give it to them. After all, what it costs will soon be buried in last year's corporate financial statement!

If, however, you are a traditionalist project manager that cares about project management as a discipline, this book does not sit so well. That's because the concept of "agility" in project management seems to be a wonderful way of evading the serious business of exercising thoughtful direction and control, especially where scope and cost are concerned. As Gary points out: "In the agile project, we spend more energy on information absorption and analysis, rather than constantly updating the plan."[30]

But when all is said and done, management of technology (projects) is different from managing the "classic" project, and the project management style does need to be adjusted to suit. It's all a matter of degree.

R. Max Wideman
Fellow, PMI

Downside - Part 2  Downside - Part 2

29. Ibid, p73
30. Ibid, p77
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