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Chapter 1. Initiating the Project > Defining the Project Management Life Cycle

Defining the Project Management Life Cycle

Before you hop into the launch of a project, it’s paramount that you understand the life cycle of project management. A life cycle is just a pleasant way of saying things are created, they have a life, and then they go away. Projects are temporary; they do not, thankfully, last forever. Operations, however, describe the ongoing core business of an organization. Operations are the day-to-day tasks, business focus, and purpose of an organization; they’re what companies do. Projects are unique endeavors that don’t fit into the day-to-day model and activities of an organization. Projects are special undertakings to create unique products, services, and conditions.

A project, technically, is a temporary endeavor to create a unique product or service. Projects are an undertaking outside of the normal operations of an entity. For example, you might roll out a new application, install new monitors, create a new portion of a web site, or establish a new call center for application support. In some organizations, such as ones composed of application developers or consultants, or IT integration companies, everything they do is a project because they complete projects for other organizations. Consider a company that creates custom applications for other organizations. Their operation is an ongoing series of projects. The organization that completes the project work is called the performing organization.


  

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