………..by Dr. Elyssebeth Leigh
Project management is the task of planning, organising, motivating, and controlling resources to achieve a specific set of goals. By its very nature a project is a temporary endeavour with a defined beginning and fixed end, constrained by funding and deliverables, undertaken to meet unique goals and objectives, typically to bring about beneficial change or added value.
The temporary nature of projects stands in contrast with ‘business as usual’, which is a set of repetitive, permanent activities to produce products or services. The management of these two systems is often quite different, and as such requires the development of distinct technical skills and management strategies.
The primary challenge of project management is to achieve all of the project goals and objectives while honoring the preconceived constraints. The primary constraints are scope, time, quality and budget. The secondary, and more ambitious, challenge is the optimal allocation of necessary inputs and integrate them to meet pre-defined objectives while carrying on business as usual.