Chapter 12 discusses project control. It includes methods to monitor and control project progress and manage project risks. As well as making changes to the plan as necessary. The use of earned value analysis and project metrics to monitor project performance, and determine deviations from the plan is an important technique. Clear communication is key to project management success.
Chapter 13 delves into the unique challenges and considerations involved in managing research and development (R&D) projects. One significant concept discussed is the need for flexibility and adaptability in R&D project management, as the results of research may lead to changes in the project scope or objectives. Another important concept is the need for effective risk management in R&D projects, as the high level of uncertainty and potential for failure make it particularly important to anticipate and mitigate risks.
- The technology sector, especially in mobile phone manufacturing, is one major U.S. business where innovation and technology lapses have given foreign competitors a leg up. Motorola and Nokia were not prepared for the fast shift in smartphones, and market demands for better features like apps, Internet access, and cameras. They were also slow in developing smartphones and innovating, which allowed foreign companies like Apple and Samsung to take a large share of this market. It can also be explained by a lack of investment in research and development, poor management practices and failures to adapt to changes in consumer preferences.
- General Motors’ $5 billion automation program in the mid-1980s was a disappointment in terms of productivity gains and return on investment. This failure was likely due to the complex nature of new technologies that were being implemented, leading to major technical issues and lengthy implementation delays. Additionally, the program did not take into account the specific needs and capabilities of GM’s existing workforce, which resulted in resistance and low employee engagement. GM also didn’t have a well-constructed plan or clear strategy for the deployment of new technologies. The automation program was a great idea in the long term, but not executed well. It is important for organizations to have a clear plan and vision for implementing new technologies, as well as ensure that the new technologies align with the company’s overall strategy and are beneficial for the employees and customers.