This paper was printed as Chapter 5 in the GPM state-of-the-art book Dimensions of Project Management edited by H. ReschkeŠ & H. Schelle and published by Springer-Verlag in 1990. The book involved 29 authors from 16 countries and was assembled in honor of Roland W. Gutsch's 65th birthday. Roland, a personal friend, was founder and long-time leader of the International Project Management Association in Europe.

Abstract | Introduction | What is | Dimensions | Internal Culture
Corporate Culture | Influencing Environment | Internal Strategies
Surroundings | External Strategies | Stakeholders | Public Relations
Examples | Recent Projects | Consultants | Summary | References

Effective Internal Project Management Strategies

Projects fail for many internal reasons, some of them technical, some of them managerial. However, even the technical failures can often be traced back to a failure on the part of the project's executive management to recognize and deal with these inherent managerial risks. On the other hand, probably the majority of apparently successful projects do not reflect their optimum potential either.

As a matter of project experience, a number of prerequisites have been identified with the successful project. While these prerequisites do not necessarily guarantee success of future projects, their absence may well lead to sub-optimal success, if not outright failure. The Project's Executive has a vital role to play in achieving project success and should therefore insist on the following:

Executive Support - The Executive must clearly demonstrate support for the project management concept by active sponsorship and control.

External Authority - The project manager must be seen as the authoritative agent in dealing with all parties, and be the responsible and single formal contact with them.

Internal Authority - The project manager must have the necessary managerial authority within his organization to ensure response to his requirements.

Commitment Authority - The project manager must have the responsibility and authority to control the commitment of resources, including funds, within prescribed limits. The results of these decisions must be both accountable and visible.

Project Manager Involved in All Major Decisions - No major technical, cost, schedule, or performance decisions should be made without the project manager's participation.

Competence - The project manager and his team members must be competent. Other functional personnel assigned to the project must also be competent.

Project Team - The project manager should have a say in the assembly of his project team, which will help him to obtain their personal commitment, support and required quality of service.

Management Information Systems - Effective project management information and control systems must be in place.

Influencing The Project's Cultural Environment  Influencing The Project's Cultural Environment

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