What is project management, and what are its main objectives? What is the relationship between tasks and events, or milestones? What is a work breakdown structure? How do you create one?
What are task patterns, and how can you recognize them?
Compare the advantages and disadvantages of Gantt and PERT/CPM charts. Define the following terms: best-case estimate, probable-case estimate, and worst- case estimate, and describe how project managers use these concepts. How does a project manager calculate start and finish times? What is a critical path, and why is it important to project managers? How do you identify the critical path?
What are some project reporting and communication techniques? What is risk management, and why is it important?
In Poor Richard’s Almanac, Benjamin Franklin penned the familiar lines: “For the want of a nail the shoe was lost, for the want of a shoe the horse was lost, for the want of a horse the rider was lost, for the want of a rider the battle was lost, for the want of a battle the kingdom was lost — and all for the want of a horseshoe nail.” Looking at the outcome in hindsight, could project management concepts have avoided the loss of the kingdom? Explain your answers.
At Countywide Construction, you are trying to convince your boss that he should consider modern project management techniques to manage a complex project. Your boss says that he doesn’t need anything fancy, and that he can guess the total time by the seat of his pants. To prove your point, you decide to use a very simple example of a commercial con- struction project, with eight tasks. You create a hypothetical work breakdown struc- ture, as follows: Prepare the foundation (10 days). Then assemble the building (4 days). When the building is assembled, start two tasks at once: Finish the interior work (4 days) and set up an appointment for the final building inspection (30 days). When the interior work is done, start two more tasks at...
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