What is Project Management? (A Quick Overview)


Incoming communications, working across time zones, checking emails, dealing with clients, etc. are some of the tasks that are a part of project management. Ever wondered why these people involved in project management, i.e. project managers, get paid so much? What do they do, and how do they organize themselves to deliver results? If these questions ever come into your mind, this article is for you as you will learn about project management, its scope, methodologies, and tools.

What is Project Management?

The term “Project Management” clearly defines itself. However, it is not as easy as it seems to be a project manager. Project management is the use of specialized skills, knowledge, and tools, along with time and teamwork to accomplish a project.

The development of your favorite video game, the road you walk on, and the car you drive to work required project management to become a reality. 

Project management and management are two different terms that are sometimes considered the same. There are many differences between these two; however, the significant difference that differentiates the two is time.

Project management comes with a limited time, which means that individuals exercising project management have to deliver projects before a particular date. For example, if you are to manage a construction project, you will need to accomplish it within a specified duration. Failing to do so can cause a penalty for you and your team.

On the other hand, management is a continuous process that goes on as part of any organization. Considering the same example above, management (or general management) in the construction of a building will refer to managing the team, labor, and overall activities to certain the coordination among the group and optimal use of resources available.

Because of time constraints, project management requires skilled professionals who possess skills like team management, technical skills, and communication skills.

Critical Elements of a Project

Now that we are clear about what project management means, let us try to understand the critical ingredients of a project.

There are two main key components of a project:

  1. i) Time
  2. ii) Budget

Time: It is necessary to set a time limit for any project. The team or organization to take that project will need to deliver the project on or before the specified deadline.

Budget: The budget is an essential part of a project. It is necessary to know where the funds will come from and how they will be managed. Having good knowledge of finance brings in the best results for a company, and the budget for a project comes under finance.

The other two elements that need to be defined before a project starts are the key objectives and the desired quality of the project deliverables. The first question is, why are we doing this? The second is, what are the standards that need to be maintained? These two are the most common questions that come to a project manager’s mind while working on a project. So these two questions need to be answered before anything because knowing what and why keeps the team motivated and stays clear about the goals that they need to achieve.

Who is a Project Manager? What is their Work?

Project managers are the leaders of a project. They know how to stay organized, dedicated, disciplined, and goal-oriented. They are responsible for managing their teams and producing the expected results. The critical attribute of a project manager would be to drive his team to accomplish certain project goals. Also, they should show sheer determination and strength under pressure.

Here are some of the key responsibilities of a project manager:

  1. i) Defining the aim of a project, explaining all the whats and whys
  2. ii) Leading the team

iii) Planning the budget and managing all resources

  1. iv) Communicating with stakeholders
  2. v) Taking risks
  3. vi) Being responsible for everything

vii) Troubleshooting

viii) Assuring quality of work

With these responsibilities, a project manager needs to have skills like critical thinking, leadership, communication, organization, etc.

The career of a project manager can be very challenging. At some point, it might also bring anxiety, but keeping patience during those tough times makes a project manager valuable.

Do you believe you have these skills and possess all the qualities of a project manager? If the answer to this question is yes, we strongly recommend you opt for this career. If you wonder what scope this career has, let us tell you about some amazing experiences you will have in this career and the demand of project managers.

Scope of Project Management

Project managers are essentially responsible for managing projects and ensuring that the project runs smoothly and meets all the requirements and timelines. Project managers are individuals that have extraordinary skills to manage people and time.

One good reason to follow a project manager’s career path is that the demand of project managers is evident in almost all industries. There is a requirement for project managers in Construction, IT, Engineering, and many other sectors. In countries like the U.S.A. and Canada, a considerable hike was seen in the demand for project managers by the year 2020.

According to a report by CNBC, Project management is the most in-demand skill, and there are people with less than three years of experience who are earning handsome salaries. Project management is one of the easiest ways for people with non-tech backgrounds to land a high-paying job.

It is already seen that the scope of project management is remarkably wide, and people are trying their best to build a career out of this profession.

Project Management Methodologies

Project management is a set of principles that must be followed to complete a project. A project management methodology can be considered as a technique that tells us the tools and steps required to execute a plan and ultimately accomplish the project.

Knowing project management methodologies is essential because it helps you accomplish projects efficiently. Below are the four crucial project management methodologies that you need to know:

1. Waterfall methodology

This methodology is as simple as a straight line. It divides the project work into various steps or phases. The team can move to the new step once they have completed the previous step only. Waterfall model is the most popular methodology for accomplishing a wide variety of projects.

Ideal for:

Manufacturing and construction industry.

2. Agile methodology

This is a flexible methodology, and unlike waterfall, this is open to change. The flexibility it offers is because of the need for fast results and accommodation of ever-changing requirements. Teams self-organize themselves and continue to plan and adapt to ways that bring improvement.

Ideal for:

IT sector

3. Scrum methodology

First introduced in “Harvard Business Review,” Scrum is ideal for small teams. Teams are often assigned tasks that can be completed in a week or two. Daily meetings are an essential part of this methodology.

Ideal for:

Logistics industry

4. Critical Path method

This method includes breaking down the project into various activities and steps. Then, we will identify the time that each step will take to finish. Assuming the worst situation, we will find the longest time the project can take because of the project’s time-consuming activities. This longest-time-taking path is known as the Critical Path. These activities, which take the most extended amount of time, are taken special care of because these activities can delay the entire project.

Ideal for:

Mid-sized projects

Typical Project Management Tools

i) Microsoft Project

Microsoft Project is the number one tool for project managers. Other applications like MS Excel and PowerPoint have their importance, but we consider Microsoft Project the best because of its features. It helps in doing a lot of calculations that are necessary to analyze data. With this tool, you can summarize your reports, manage records efficiently, and predict the behavior of your business in the future.

ii) Trello

Trello is a great project management software available as a web app as well as a native Android and iOS mobile app. It helps to organize projects and all the work associated with them. Also, it lets your team members visualize the progress of their tasks.

In Trello, you can represent a project as a board. Each board will let you add cards, comments, task descriptions, etc. These features will help you and your team manage tasks effectively.

iii) Evernote

Evernote is an evergreen tool for project managers. It allows you to create to-do lists and store all the project data in files and notes. As this tool is cloud-based, you can access it from anywhere using any internet-enabled device.

iv) Skype for Business

Skype for Business is a tool that helps you to connect with your team members and stakeholders seamlessly. It supports audio and video conferencing and instant messaging. This tool aims to facilitate effective communication.


After reading this article, you must be getting excited about project management. However, let us conclude for you that project management is a diverse field that would welcome you with open arms if you have all the necessary skills. If you are ready to make a career in it, we recommend you learn as many tools and methodologies as possible. Moreover, as stated earlier, for people coming from non-tech backgrounds, project management is an excellent way to land a high-paying job.

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