Managing the Development of Building Projects for Better Results

First published in 1981, updated for web presentation, Dec. 2000

Introduction | Principal Parties | Project Plan | Improving Performance
Project Life Cycle | Bar Chart Schedule | Manpower Loading Data
Information Explosion | Final Cost | Design Stages | Cost Effectiveness
Choices | Construction Costing | Value Management | Design Review
Cost of Building Ownership | Practice and Value Management | Summary

Improving Performance Through Understanding

The question is, how to make the development process work better? Good books and articles on project management and appropriate management tools and techniques are available to the manager for reference and the number is steadily growing. Too few are read by the specialists involved in the process as they are not seen as relevant to their work.

Yet projects are built by people and their effective interaction through understanding.

Successful companies succeed by putting together people who work well together, whether from within their organization or outside it. Virtually all their effort is committed to the common objectives, rather than the conflicts to which the complex relationships of the project are naturally prone. The twin keys are commitment and communication - commitment by team members to pre-established project objectives and continuous and effective communication of those objectives. Not necessarily more communication is required, but rather better quality and better directed information and understanding.

Even our educational establishments seem to be slow in taking this up as a challenge in the specific context of project work. It is the more regrettable, considering information and communication techniques properly handled on a project can result in substantial savings.

And bear in mind that in North America, the industry as a whole represents over a quarter of the gross national product.

The following diagrams have been developed from information on a large number of building projects, typifying the project development process.

The Project Plan  The Project Plan

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