Category Archives: Applying Project Management

The Applying Project Management sub-category is specific to topics on how to apply project management principles.

What are the differences between product-oriented processes and project management processes?

Recently, we have published on LinkedIn the CAMMP eleven principles or critical success factors. These are the principles necessary to build tailored project management methods in organizations. These tailored methods are for the management of projects and delivery of products. An online network connection (Mr. Larry Moore) raised the question: “Could you please explain just what you mean by “product and delivery processes?” Are these two different and separate groups of processes, or are they combined into a single set of processes? ”

So, what are the differences between product-oriented processes and project management processes? Further, why is it important for project managers to know about both? That is what we are answering in today’s article.

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What problems is CAMMP trying to solve?

The Background

A network member, Michal Zuchowski, tagged #CAMMP on a LinkedIn discussion comparing #PMBOK Guide with #PRINCE2 and he suggested CAMMP is an alternative to consider. We appreciate the mention, Michal.

The tag led to questions about CAMMP and what problems is CAMMP trying to solve. Keep in mind that CAMMP is a core component of the Uruk PPM Platform that SUKAD is developing.

What problems is CAMMP trying to solve?

Here was the short answer

The CAMMP Model is project management and product delivery methodological approach; following a project from concept to closure, using a stage-gate process using a project life cycle as the foundation.

The CAMMP™ Standard Project Life Cycle, What problems is CAMMP trying to solve?

Expanding on the above,

We view projects as change initiatives and not limited to “execution”, which means it integrates the business side with the delivery side; eliminating the gap between Business & Delivery.

The above led to the question that triggered this post, what problems is CAMMP trying to solve? Or “So the main problem you’re solving is the gap between Business and Delivery?”

More on “What problems is CAMMP trying to solve?”

Solving the gap between Business and Delivery is one of the challenges that we are solving.

The second challenge we are approaching is covering is the confusion between process groups and project phases.

The third issue is the need to treat projects as change initiatives that should lead to benefits.

CAMMP main characteristics, Critical Success Factors

The main characteristic of CAMMP is cross-industry, domain, size, and complexity, which we can accomplish through tailored methods. Keep in mind the full name is Customizable and Adaptable Methodology for Managing Projects.

The image here include the core principles and critical success factors for a project management methodology.

CAMMP Principles, Critical Success Factors

We will write about these critical success factors in future posts.

CAMMP vs. PMBOK Guide vs. PRINCE2

The LinkedIn post where we were tagged and end up triggering this post was about comparing PMBOK Guide to PRINCE2 and the tag added CAMMP to the discussion, which is exciting considering that CAMMP is relatively the new kid on the block, working to becoming a giant. So how do we compare? Let us share an image to summarize the comparison.

Comparing CAMMP to PRINCE2 and PMBOK Guide

CAMMP, from a new kid on the block to a giant

The title of this part is quite ambitious but we believe in the future of CAMMP and the SUKAD way. We understood the problems facing project management years ago, this is why we started the SUKAD Way program. It is also important that we realized the project management current state of practice, which is not great. We envisioned the solution despite the ongoing hypes on certifications, PMO, agile, and …

We continue to enhance the SUKAD Way and CAMMP. A CRC Press Book, Project Management beyond Waterfall and Agile documents CAMMP Version 3. Now, it is time for the Uruk PPM Platform.

The Uruk PPM Platform

Earlier this year (June 2019), we register SUKAD Corp in the United States with an additional division to our past operation. The new division is SUKAD Technology Solutions, which is mandated to develop the Uruk PPM Platform, a cloud-based PPM Solution that has CAMMP and other SUKAD Way solutions at its core.

The Uruk PPM Platform

The Uruk PPM Platform will be one of the first methodology-enable project management solutions in the market.

We are not building software, we are building the mechanism to trigger the organizational transformation into project management excellence beyond the hype.

We aim to change the culture and embed an agility mindset to product development and project management. That is the giant to come!

How to deal with the blockers of project management knowledge?

In this post, I am taking a small section from Chapter 1 of my upcoming book, Leading Megaprojects, A Tailored Approach to deal with what I call blockers of project management knowledge. The type of people who think that everything we need to know has been invented and no room for new knowledge or another perspective. I guess we need to ask universities to shut down; cancel their project management programs; or refer to some of these blockers to adopt their version of project management that they treat as the only “truth” or what I call narrow thinking or arrogance at the highest level. Is there a term for this level of arrogance? Back to the Blockers from Chapter 1.

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What are the leading inhibitors to projects performance?

In this post, I am borrowing a section from an internal document. This document addresses our views on the leading projects performance inhibitors. In other words, the root causes of why organizations do not do as well as they could in managing their organizational projects and products delivery. What is missing in their project management current state of practice?

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How do we distinguish between project, program, and portfolio?

The following content is from Chapter 2 of Leading Megaprojects, a Tailored Approach. We want to define these terms for the context of the book. Further, we also post them here since various practitioners might have different definitions. We will be posting other definitions in the next few days. For today, we will define ‘what is a project,’ ‘what is a program,’ and ‘what is a portfolio.’

In the next few sections, we address each question, and we close with the link of a project to portfolio management.

What is a Project

The first question is about ‘what is a project,’ and here are the general points that we use to define a project:

  • A project could be anything we create from scratch or a significant modification to an existing system. Therefore, a project would require substantial effort in terms of development and delivery.
  • Also, it has a specific product (output), objectives (outcome), defined timeline (schedule), budget, and various other parameters (resources, quality, risks, etc.).
  • As a result, a project is an investment of time and money to deliver a product or service (output). Further, it must provide the capabilities to enable the realization of benefits (outcome).

Further, more on what is a project

  • The project owner can verify and accept the output at completion and closeout. However, he often cannot validate the outcome until months or years after the end of the physical work.
  • Finally, a project can be independent or part of a program. If it is part of a program, it must align with the program objective. Which in turn must align with the organizational strategic direction. On the other hand, if the project is independent, it must directly align with the organization’s strategic direction.

What Is Not a Project

In the previous message, we defined ‘what is a project.’ Consequently, we need to clarify the definition further by stressing what is not a project.

  • It is common knowledge that normal, routine, repeated actions (tasks)[1] are not projects. For example, something that requires a typical, repetitive business or manufacturing process to produce a gadget or X item would not be a project.
  • A phase of a project, or a stage, is not a project; more on this later.
  • Further, tasks that are part of a project are not projects, regardless of how big the task might be. For example, the graphical design for this book is not a project,[2] it is a piece of writing and publishing this book project, which one could label as a sub-project.

Next, let us add more information.

More information

Consequently, having said the above, we can still apply the project management process[3] on a piece of the project, be it a phase, stage, or a sub-project. The processes and process groups, such as the PDCA Cycle,[4] apply for tasks, sub-projects, or stages of a project. Consequently, it is vital to understand this point. Being able to use these processes on a piece does not make the piece a whole project. We stress this point because many practitioners confuse the processes and process groups from PMI® and ISO® as project phases.[5] Therefore, those who think that the process groups are phases mistake the process groups as the project life cycle, which is a fundamental problem. However, one might exclude micro-projects.

What is a Program

Next, we define the program, and here are the general guidelines that we follow to define a program:

  • A program is a group of related projects and may include other operational work.
  • The projects are related to a common business objective, often a long-term strategic objective that aligns with the organizational strategic direction, mission, and vision.
  • However, while working on the program, the organization may adjust the projects. For example, accelerating or slowing one or more projects in the program. The changes would be driven based on organizational needs and various other factors.[6]
  • The number of projects within a program could also increase or decrease as the organization collects feedback from the ongoing work and completed projects. Some might call this Agile Program Management, but we call it an adaptive project and program management. It is being nimble or adopting agility (discussed later in this chapter).
  • Finally, each project within the program must deliver some benefits. This would be in addition to the incremental or collective benefits of the entire program. This point might be controversial because we often see posts insisting that the business value exists only at the program level.

What is a Portfolio

We continue with the definitions and now we address what is a portfolio.

In this book, I do not refer to the term portfolio management often, because I see it as part of organizational project management. Also, a part of the management of projects and programs in the organization. Therefore, portfolio management is the highest level in the context of project management. It includes managing the overall portfolio, which consists of various change initiatives, strategic project management, project selection, and termination. In CAMMP™, portfolio management is active in the Discovery Phase, first with the idea and concept. Then, it is active at Stage Gate 2, in which the initial project authorization is granted through a portfolio assessment. During the project life cycle, portfolio management is active via the organizational and project governance.

Project Management and Portfolio Management

CAMMP Megaprojects, Program Management, Portfolio Management, What is a Project

As a result of the above definitions, the above image is the project life cycle for CAMMP MP (Megaprojects). Although this image is specific to a project, the image indirectly shows how a project integrates with portfolio management. Finally, portfolio management is active during the discovery phase, at project review and approval at stage gate 2.


[1] For differentiating tasks from projects, please refer to this blog article http://blog.sukad.com/how-to-differentiate-between-task-and-project/.

[2] We realize that the graphic designer, especially if an outside agency, might view the graphic design as their project. That is, for the service provider, the graphic design work from initial contact with the client until the successful completion of the work could be viewed as a project—a project for the service provider, not the client; more on this later in the chapter.

[3] Such as those described in ISO 21500 (Guidance to Project Management) or the PMBOK® Guide (A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge®).

[4] Plan–Do–Check–Act from Total Quality Management (Deming, 195#).

[5] This is possibly one of the most common areas of confusion in the project management community today.

[6] One might consider these adjustments as being driven by the emergent strategy generated from feedback and monitoring actual performance or responses.

What is the ‘integrated project management solution’ that will go into Uruk PPM Platform™?

This blog post is part of a chapter in Leading Megaprojects, a Tailored Approach. This part explains The SUKAD Way for Managing Projects and its various components. However, the focus is on how to integrate these components into a holistic solution, the Uruk PPM Platform.

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Do project owners need help transforming to lead megaprojects?

Let us repeat the title question: Do project owners need help transforming to lead megaprojects? Studies by the Independent Project Analysis (IPA) and others have clearly identified a few key facts. The facts include project owners that manage their own projects directly, achieve better results than if the projects were managed by external parties. Another finding is that about half of their clients (IPA) have an organizational project management system (OPMS) that are poor or in needs of drastic improvements. Therefore, considering these two facts, then we raise more questions.

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Are you interested to be in a project management tech start-up?

This is an unusual post for us but we think it is necessary to open up the opportunity to our colleagues, friends, and network members. We wanted to go this route by directly asking those who are interested in SUKAD, project management, and our work.

If Interested to be among the first

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Can you answer these questions? Mega Projects Trivia

Please treat this post with a bit of fun! Although we are posting serious questions about mega projects and the management of these massive projects, it good to be relaxed about them. We asked questions about people, team size, communication, and so on. I have to stress, that this blog article and a few others I have and will be posting about, are related to my work on the book Leading Mega Projects, a Tailored Approach. This book will be published by CRC Press, Taylor & Francis before the end of 2019.

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Dear projects executives, how can we help you?

I am writing this post, including some personal background information. I write to the attention of senior executives in organizations that are leading large projects, capital projects, and mega projects. You are my audience if you are an executive in what we call project owner organization. These include government, semi-gov, and private. Your projects could be oil & gas, petrochemical, unities, transportation, power generation, solar projects, real estate development, or similar. Do you need to build your project management function?

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