Situational Project Management : The Dynamics of Success and Failure book cover
1st Edition

Situational Project Management
The Dynamics of Success and Failure

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ISBN 9781498722612
Published July 1, 2016 by Auerbach Publications
298 Pages 19 Color & 72 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Most project managers would agree that every project is unique. But not all project managers would agree that the best way to manage a unique project is unique. Many still cling to the old practice of having a methodology that is applied to all projects. "One size fits all" is still in common use, and this approach has proven to lead to project failure. Flexibility, situational intelligence, and creativity are essential to deliver project success.

The need to recognize and master ever-changing requirements and environmental conditions is a tough challenge for professional project managers. The same practices that led to success yesterday may cause failure today. Selecting favorable responses to a given situation is often the most critical factor of the dynamics of success and failure. This book is designed to help project professionals assess a situation, predict the appropriate approach, methodology and achieving styles, and then apply them in a situational fashion.

To guide project managers in selecting the appropriate responses, Situational Project Management (SitPM) shows how to assess a given project, determine its unique characteristics, and select the appropriate methods to complete the project. With this book, projects managers can use SitPM to develop profiles of their projects on the basis of the projects’ physical characteristics, the project teams’ behavioral characteristics, the enterprise environment, and the market environments receiving project deliverables. These profiles help project managers to determine the appropriate project life cycle approach and leadership style. The book also explores various ways to engage stakeholders on the basis of a project’s SitPM profile.

The book’s author, Oliver F. Lehmann, has developed a set of templates to apply SitPM in practice. It can be downloaded from

Table of Contents

The Situational View on Project Management
Introductory Questions
The Purpose of This Book
A Primer on Project Management
Project Management Today
How We Are Seen by Others
The Complex Dynamics of Success and Failure
Standardization and Certification in Project Management
Terminology Traps
Navigating between Monsters

Digging Deeper
Introductory Questions
A Major Distinction
What Is the Matrix?
The Economics of Attention
How Project Managers Learn
Game Theory for Project Managers—A Brief Introduction

A Typology of Projects
Introductory Questions
Best Practice Approaches vs. SitPM
A Research Project
Mark 1 Projects and Mark n Projects
Greenfield Projects and Brownfield Projects
Siloed Projects and Solid Projects
Blurred Projects and Focused Projects
High-Impact Projects and Low-Impact Projects
Customer Projects and Internal Projects
Stand-Alone Projects and Satellite Projects
Predictable Projects and Exploratory Projects
Composed Projects and Decomposed Projects
Further Types of Projects

Practices for SitPM
Introductory Questions
Lifecycle Approaches
Agile Approaches
Waterfall Approaches
Rolling Wave Approaches
Connective Leadership and Achieving Styles
Favorable and Detrimental Practices

Some Basic Tools for SitPM
Introductory Questions
Stakeholder Force-Field Analysis (StaFFA)
Benefit Engineering
Pressure-Free Estimating
Protective Change Request Management Process
PDM Network Diagramming
Situational Project Scheduling
Staged Response Diagram (SRD)
The Stakeholder Attitudes Influence Chart
Turturism, Private Settings and Leadership

Leadership and the Dynamics of Success and Failure
So, What Is Leadership?
As Project Leaders, What Should We Do?




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"A significant contribution to the project management body of knowledge." –Robert K. Wysocki, PhD, President, EII Publications, LLC