It all started because of a quite successful seminar on project management
held in Saudi Arabia. The small but elite group of project managers came from
various Islamic countries. As seminar leader, I was responsible for coordinating
and orchestrating the presentation of my team of six lecturers each of whom is
expert in one or more aspects of managing capital projects. The seminar lasted
for ten exhausting but very satisfying days, and in ten days one can cover quite
a lot of ground.
Anyway, the seminar left me with a whole new pile of reference material and
overhead transparencies to be added to my existing heap of reference material
all carefully sorted in almost random order. The time had come, I told myself,
to sort this lot out for ease of future reference. But how? On what basis? Aha!
I said to myself (I always say Aha when the germ of an idea flits across the
distant horizon -á it sort of sets the tone for creative thinking). Aha! I said,
the PMI Ethics, Standards and Accreditation (ESA) Management Group's framework
of six standard functions and, their respective breakdowns should prove ideal.
Figure 1: ESA's Management Group's framework
Figure 2: The practices of Scope and Quality: project objectives [RMW 1985]
But having solved the classification problem, how would I store and recall
them for future use? Should they be regrouped thus breaking their present often
repetitive sequences painstakingly put together for numerous different presentation
purposes? Aha! I said to myself a second time (a somewhat unusual event I might
add) why not use the classifying, sorting and recall capability of one of my
micro computer programs? After all it would only take (my wife) about 10 hours
of hard work to enter all the necessary coding and data. Coding? Well that's
a systems problem and my wife specializes in that sort of thing.