Project management is the process of managing an endeavour that is usually time-bound and it has one or more deliverables. The stages include initiation, planning, execution and close down phases.
The project life cycle follows a typical pattern which is a logical progression that each project goes through before finally ending at some point.
This is the first step towards any project and involves getting approval for same from superior levels within the organization. It also involves defining what the main purpose of undertaking this initiative will be as well as who will be involved with delivering outcome(s) required to achieve stated goals A clear understanding should also be reached on any legal implications as well as organizational environmental factors that may impact the project at a later stage.
Planning and scheduling
This is the step where details for how to move forward from this point onwards are worked out and agreed upon by all concerned parties within the organization. Detailed plans should be drawn up in respect of the action required to carry out all goals that were set for this initiative during the initiation phase. Decisions need to be made regarding who will handle what part of the workload is involved with carrying out these tasks. Well defined schedules also need to be determined regarding when each task should begin as well as how long it will take before goal(s) can be achieved successfully.
This phase involves taking into account decisions made during earlier phases such as the planning stage above. The details outlined during the planning stage are now implemented and carried out. This means that all tasks as laid out in the planning phase will be done at appropriate times throughout this execution phase. The project manager needs to oversee each task being carried out so that those responsible for carrying out these actions do things in the manner agreed upon during the planning phase as well as what was determined for schedule development within this same earlier step.
During this execution phase, it is also important to look after the day to day activities of the team members involved with ensuring successful outcomes are realized by carrying out all agreed-upon tasks. Also, assess if any new changes need to be made based on unforeseen circumstances which may arise while attempting to accomplish goals set forth for this initiative during the initiation stage of a project life cycle.
This is the final stage in terms of carrying out any project. The purpose here is to carry out all final tasks required for bringing this initiative to an end. Any remaining work leftover at this point should be wrapped up and properly closed out. This includes deciding whether or not lessons learned during this time will need to be transferred into some sort of archival format so that they can benefit others within the organization as well as those outside these same walls who may have similar needs or goals when it comes to undertaking projects which are similar in nature to one(s) just completed. It’s also a good idea during the closedown phase to take inventory on how much money was spent compared with what was originally budgeted for carrying out said task(s).
One thing which should be kept in mind when discussing the project life cycle is that as one(s) is undertaken, it will be necessary to revisit these earlier steps to make revisions and adjustments so that any new information gathered can have a positive impact on future projects.