O'Reilly logo

A User's Manual to the PMBOK Guide, Fifth Edition by Cynthia Stackpole Snyder

Stay ahead with the world's most comprehensive technology and business learning platform.

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required

Chapter 2

Key Concepts

TOPICS COVERED

Projects, Programs, and Portfolios

Project Life Cycles

Progressive Elaboration

Tailoring

Enterprise Environmental Factors

Organizational Process Assets

Projects, Programs, and Portfolios

The difference between a project and a program can sometimes be fuzzy. And the difference between a program and a portfolio of projects can also be confusing. Let’s start by looking at definitions for these words and then explore some additional key concepts in project management.

image
Project. A temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product, service, or result.
Program. A group of related projects, subprograms, and program activities, managed in a coordinated way to obtain benefits not available from managing them individually.
Portfolio. Projects, programs, subportfolios, and operations managed as a group to achieve strategic objectives.

Some people consider a program to be a jumbo-sized project. While this can be the case, it is not always true. For example, the Olympic Games could be considered a very large project with many subprojects. However, because of the size, cost, duration, and the sheer number of projects it takes to produce the Olympic Games, it is more like a collection of projects that is managed in a coordinated fashion—in other words, a program. Many of the projects are construction-related, many are production-related, many are ...

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, interactive tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required