PMBOK recognizes 5 basic process groups and 9 knowledge areas typical of almost all projects. They are Project Integration Management, Project Scope Management, Project Time Management, Project Cost Management, Project Quality Management, Project Human Resource Management, Project Communications Management, Project Risk Management, and Project Procurement Management (Project Smart, 2008). Of these 9 areas, it is my belief that Project Time Management, Project Communication Management and Project Scope Management are the most important.
Time Management includes all processes and procedures relating to the timely completion of a project (De Jaeger, 2008). There are several processes included with proper time management skills and management. First, Activity Definition requires the project manager to define the activities to be assigned and their estimated timeframe. Many times activities overlap one another. Activity Sequencing demands the manager to make sure that they can schedule appropriate details of the project in a manner that would allow the project to continue to move forward with the most productivity as possible. Activity Resource Estimating allows the project manager to assess the supply on hand to complete the assignment as scheduled. Schedule Development and Control are additional functions the project manager must be mindful of when coordinating proper Project Time Management (Project Management Institute, 2004, pg. 123).
When poor time management comes into play, delays and miscommunications can occur in the development of a project. Time is of the essence when an alternative method of accomplishment needs to be executed to continue project production. An inaccurate projection of Activity Resource Estimating could prove to be a costly error. In this case, the project would be delayed because the project moved quicker than was anticipated and consumed more resources or the project used less than was predicted and the excess was wasted (Project Management Institute, 2004, pg. 137). In reference to trade show preparation, time management includes accounting for travel plans, set-up and breakdown of the trade show display, and coordination of the creation of all marketing and promotional materials for the event. These items are time sensitive and can affect budgeting and overall project progress.
Project Communication Management involves Communications Planning or the identification of project stakeholders needs and desires for the project as a whole. Information Distribution requires project managers to make information concerning the project available to project stakeholders on an as-needed basis. Performance Reporting is another aspect of project Communications Management. The acquisition and distribution of information to project team members is included in this area. Status reporting, progress reports, and forecasting are an important part of communications in any project. The final processes in this area include managing the demands of project stakeholders and keeping them informed during the production stages (Project Management Institute, 2004, pg. 221).
When there are flaws in communication during project management phases, there are drastic errors that can occur. If a delay in communication occurs, requested changes can take longer to occur and prolong the progress of the project (Project Management Institute, 2004, pg. 234). Planning for a trade show involves input from multiple parties and cooperation of these entities. During the development stages for collateral and other marketing materials involved in the trade show, stakeholders should be kept abreast of any and all changes pertaining to design, orientation and the general flow of the trade show.
Project Scope Management includes Scope Planning. The scope of the project defines how the project will be created, verified, and controlled. When we look at the Scope Definition, project managers are responsible for creating a detailed project statement for the preliminary address of the project at hand. This area also requires the manager to divide major project deliverables into smaller sections for team members to tackle. As the objectives of the project change, this area requires that the project manager control changes made to the scope of the project as a whole (Project Management Institute, 2004, pg. 103).
Maintaining the Project Scope is important for accurate project progression and growth. The scope should include only things that are necessary to the project as additional activities could be a burden to the project and take up unnecessary time. Environmental factors and other things that are outside the realm of forecasting can affect the scope of a project. In this aspect, the project may need to be put on hold because of an emergency or some other unpredicted occurrence. Project managers should prepare for scrutiny and criticism towards their general project parameters. This preparation will only strengthen the project management scope and add additional stability to the project plan (Project Management Institute, 2004, pg. 107).
When creating items to use for a trade show, it is imperative that the scope of the project be as precise as possible. At the same time, it is important that the lines of communication flow freely and be updated in a timely manner. While all knowledge areas discussed in the Project Management Body of Knowledge, these three categories strike me as the most pertinent to trade show development and coordination. Timing of travel, communication of needs, and scope of project in full extent are of the utmost importance to stockholders as well as team members involved in this production.
CTU Online. (Ed.). (ca. 2007). Phase 2 Course Material [multimedia presentation]. Colorado Springs, CO: CTU Online. Retrieved January 22, 2008, from CTU Online, Virtual Campus, MPM401 Project Management Theory: 0801A-03. Website: https://campus.ctuonline.edu/MainFrame.aspx?ContentFrame=/Classroom/course.aspx?Class=23719&tid=39
De Jaeger, J. (2008) What is PMBOK? Retrieved January 24, 2008, from http://www.12manage.com/methods_pmi_pmbok.html
Gido and Clements. (2006) Successful Project Management. (3rd ed.) Thomson Higher Education: Mason, OH.
Project Management Institute (PMI). (2004) A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge. Project Management Institute: Newtown Square, PA.
Project Smart. (2008) The Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK). Retrieved Janaury 24, 2008, from http://www.projectsmart.co.uk/pmbok.html