Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) Notes – Introduction (Chapter 1)

Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) Guide 4th Edition
Chapter 1 – Introduction

Core Definitions

  • Project: A temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product, service, or result. Projects, within programs or portfolios, are a means of achieving organizational goals and objectives, often in the context of a strategic plan.
  • Project Management: The application of knowledge, skills, tools, and techniques to project activities to meet project requirements.
  • Project Management Office (PMO): An organizational body or entity assigned various responsibilities related to the centralized and coordinated management of those projects under its domain. The responsibilities of a PMO can range from providing project management support functions to actually being responsible for the direct management of a project.
  • Program: A group of related projects managed in a coordinated way to obtain benefits and control not available from managing them individually. Projects within a program are related through the common outcome or collective capability.
  • Program Management: The centralized coordinated management of a program to achieve the program’s strategic objectives and benefits. Program management focuses on project interdependencies and helps determine the optimal approach for managing them.
  • Portfolio: A collection of projects or programs and other work that are grouped together to facilitate effective management of that work to meet strategic business objectives.
  • Portfolio Management: The centralized management of one or more portfolios, which includes identifying, prioritizing, authorizing, managing, and controlling projects, programs, and other related work, to achieve specific strategic business objectives.
  • Operations: Permanent endeavors that produce repetitive outputs, with resources assigned to do basically the same set of tasks according to the standards institutionalized in a product life cycle.
  • Enterprise Environmental Factors: Both internal and external environmental factors that surround or influence a project’s success, to include, but not limited to: organizational culture, government/industry standards, infrastructure, existing human resources, personnel administration, marketplace conditions, stakeholder risk tolerances, political climate, and PM information systems.

General Notes

  • (1.2) Projects can have social, economic, and environmental impacts that far outlast the projects themselves.
  • (1.5) Projects require project management while operations require business process management (BPM) or operations management.
  • (1.6) Effective project management requires that the project manager (PM) possesses the following characteristics:
    • Knowledge: What the PM knows about project management
    • Performance: What the PM can do when applying project management knowledge
    • Personal: Behavior, attitude, leadership, balance and other core characteristics of the PM
  • (1.8) Enterprise environmental factors are considered inputs to most planning processes.


4 thoughts on “Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) Notes – Introduction (Chapter 1)

  1. I am a lecturer for the ICM DIPLOMA IN PROJECT MANAGEMENT conducting tutorials for uniformed forces, Am keenly following your work man. Give us more of it. Mhaka Munyaradzi, Byo, Zimbabwe , Southern Africa

  2. Kevin,

    Great stuff!

    Thank you for adding to the knowledge pool. I am a long time Project/Program Manager (practicing since 1982), I have an MBA and a MPM. I am a former PMP, who loves the PMBOK, but not the PMI culture. I have taught Project Management for many years and appreciate you effort.

    Michael Ervick

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