REVIEW - Effective Project Management


Effective Project Management


Robert K. Wysocki, Robert Beck, Jr., David B. Crane



Wiley (2000)




Joe McCool


February 2001



A possible career change has given me a decided interest in this subject of late; before this I was involved in Project Management but in an unstructured way and without resort to any software tools. In starting this book I made the mistake of assuming that it was concerned with computers and that it would therefore be entirely relevant and adequate to my task. It is not. Computers or software hardly get a mention.

Readers of C Vu will be disappointed in that the examples considered are 'Office Supplies Containment' and the 'Design of a Church Organ'! I would be much more interested in a book concerned with 'A New Sales Ledger' or 'A Web Based Order Processing Module'.

Another worry I have is lack of coverage of software tools in the project management process. Here only Microsoft Project gets a mention (an evaluation copy is included on the accompanying CD, along with a lot of other useful PDF files based on the text's case studies). Software tools are also considered in relation to mind-mapping, a useful concept according to the authors for small projects. (Having read Tony Buzan's original book on Mind Mapping, I remain dubious!) They get only a mention in regard to project reporting and calculating percentage completeness.

Having said that, the coverage is otherwise thorough, well presented and some useful concepts are discussed; utilisation of staff, top-down approaches, costing, project networking, monitoring and control. It might make a useful introduction to the subject, but is inadequate on its own.

Book cover image courtesy of Open Library.