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Project Management in Practice, 5th Edition by Margaret M. Sutton, Scott M. Shafer, Samuel J. Mantel, Jr., Jack R. Meredith

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The World of Project Management

Once upon a time there was a heroine project manager. Her projects were never late. They never ran over budget. They always met contract specifications and invariably satisfied the expectations of her clients. And you know as well as we do, anything that begins with “Once upon a time . . .” is just a fairy tale.

This book is not about fairy tales. Throughout these pages we will be as realistic as we know how to be. We will explain project management practices that we know will work. We will describe project management tools that we know can help the project manager come as close as Mother Nature and Lady Luck will allow to meeting the expectations of all who have a stake in the outcome of the project.

1.1 WHAT IS A PROJECT?

Why this emphasis on project management? The answer is simple: Daily, organizations are asked to accomplish work activities that do not fit neatly into business-as-usual. A software group may be asked to develop an application program that will access U.S. government data on certain commodity prices and generate records on the value of commodity inventories held by a firm; the software must be available for use on April 1. The Illinois State Bureau for Children's Services may require an annually updated census of all Illinois resident children, aged 17 years or younger, living with an illiterate single parent; the census must begin ...

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