The use of cases studies is applicable both to undergraduate and graduate level project management courses, as well as to training programs in preparation to pass the exam to become a Certified Project Management Professional (PMP~a)d ministered by the Project Management Institute. Situations are smaller case studies and usually focus on one or two specific points that need to be addressed, whereas case studies focus on a multitude of problems.
The table of contents identifies several broad categories for the casesand situations, but keep in mind that the larger case studies, such as Convin Corporation and The Blue Spider Project, could have been listed under several topics. Several of the cases and situations have "seed" questions provided to assist the reader in the analysis of the case. An instructor's manual is available from John Wiley & Sons, Inc. , to faculty members who adopt the book for classroom use. Almost all of the case studies are factual. In most circumstances, the cases and situations have been taken from the author's consulting practice.
Some educators prefer not to use case studies dated back to the 1970s and 1980s. It would be easy just to change the dates but inappropriate in the eyes of the author. The circumstances surrounding these cases and situations are the same today as they were twenty years ago. Unfortunately we seem to be repeating several of the mistakes made previously. Part 1 PROJECT MANAGEMENT METHODOLOGIES As companies approach some degree of maturity in project management, it becomes readily apparent to all that some sort of standardization approach is necessary for the way that projects are managed.
The ideal solution might be to have a singular methodology for all projects, whether they are for new product development, information systems, or client services. Some organizations may find it necessary to maintain more than one methodology, however, such as one methodology for information systems and a second methodology for new product development. The implementation and acceptance of a project management methodology can be difficult if the organization's culture provides a great deal of resistance toward the change.
Strong executive leadership may be necessary such that the barriers to change can be overcome quickly. These barriers can exist at all levels of’ management as well as at the worker level. The changes may require that workers give up their comfort zones and seek out new social groups. Part 2 IMPLEMENTATION OF PROJECT MANAGEMENT The first step in the implementation of project management is to recognize the true benefits that can be achieved from using project management. These benefits can be recognized at all levels of the organization.
However, each part of the organization can focus on a different benefit and want the project management methodology to be designed for their particular benefit. Another critical issue is that the entire organization may not end up providing the same level of support for project management. This could delay the final implementation of project management. In addition, there may be some pockets within the organization that are primarily project-driven and will give immediate support to project management, whereas other pockets, which are primarily non-project-driven, may be slow in their acceptance.