Lesson 1, Topic 1
In Progress

The strategic role of projects


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A strategic plan provides a unified direction for the project itself and for the organisation producing it. Such a plan defines the fundamental goals and objectives in specific terms and provides a basic long-range framework into which all the other forms of planning should mesh. The strategy-making process should be capturing what the manager learns from all sources (both the soft insights from his or her personal experiences and the experiences of others throughout the organisation and the hard data from market research and the like) and then synthesising that learning into a vision of the direction that the business should pursue. From that vision flows a series of lower-level processes by which organisational resources can be used in a way that is consistent with organisational objectives, and this hierarchy is illustrated in figure 1-8.9

FIGURE 1-8: THE STRATEGIC PROJECT MANAGEMENT

The relationship of projects to the achievement of mission is similar for the public and private sectors, although the nature of the projects is essentially different when we consider the public sector as opposed to the private sector. Corporate management models involve the assimilation of project proposals which support or enable one or more of corporate, business unit, functional or operational activities as identified in figure 1-9, (adapted from Thompson & Strickland)10.

FIGURE 1-9: PROJECT MANAGEMENT FIT WITHIN THE CORPORATE MANAGEMENT MODEL


9 The strategic project management adapted from Cleland & King (1988) and The strategic management processes adapted from Gary & Larson (2000).

10 Thompson, AS & Strickland, AJ 1992, Strategic management: concepts and cases, 6th edn, Irwin, Chicago.