More predictability through methods
A project is unique as a whole, but fortunately not everything in the project. In most cases it is the problem in this context that is special. A project can draw on proven methods and techniques. Methods are procedures that have mostly been developed scientifically and have already proven themselves thousands of times when used correctly. However, methods also support the management of expectations and transparency for all interest groups by providing logical structures and making it clear to everyone what the common approach, the requirements for this and the next steps look like.
It is now the task of the project to select, adapt (Tayloring) and adequately integrate and apply the methods and techniques that are suitable for the problem. This requires methodological and specialist knowledge of the problem, but a whole lot of experience in similar problems and projects is essential, and an open attitude to new things promotes the whole thing.
In a project, the methods and techniques can be roughly divided according to the three project dimensions of systemic project management:
- Project leadership (social leadership) – a leadership approach with moderation and communication techniques
- Program and/or project management for the initiation, planning, implementation, monitoring and control and completion of projects and programs. However, it also includes techniques for planning and consciously controlling risks and opportunities. Ideally, this can be expanded by a method for organizational change management (e.g. ADKAR).
- Product development, the actual content of the project such as software development, process modelling, strategy development, org design, service design. The methods and techniques can be well supplemented by best practice models (e.g. ITIL or SIAM in service management).
The first two disciplines are clearly within the competence of the project manager. Project management requires leadership skills and leadership awareness, project management requires contextual, social and technical project skills. Product development, on the other hand, lies primarily in the competence of the specialists who know it best and know exactly what and how something is to be done.
Now the next challenge is merging and adapting several selected methods in a single project. This also allows a targeted combination of agile and less agile approaches. Modern project methods such as PMI PMBOK Edition 7 already support a modular approach, where further standard methods for product development, but also moderation techniques or planning techniques can be integrated. Tayloring is also another important part of the latest version. During integration, the interfaces where the most problems arise must be analyzed carefully and adjusted if necessary.