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February 06 , 2008

Program Management in Defense and High Tech Environments


Program management in a technical environment is as much art as it is science. Effective program managers are able to combine management and leadership skills for the good of the program and the people entrusted to them. This book illuminates the entire life cycle of the program-from the customer's original concept to successful completion. It includes many helpful ideas and insights into why programs and program managers can fail. Much more importantly, it provides insights about how program managers can succeed.

Program Management in Defense and High Tech Environments is organized as a chronological "tale" of a program life cycle, with "side trips" that cover the important concepts of leadership, claims and claims avoidance, earned value measurement (EVM), communication basics, negotiations, and coaching. The book begins with an overview of program management, discussing the role of program managers, their required skills and experience, and the types of programs and contracts.

The remainder of the book provides more detail on the program manager's role and the environment in which he or she works. Understanding that academic explanations of program management activities can be dry, the author uses true-to-life stories to present the nuts and bolts of the work. These stories illustrate the science of program management and the art that is necessary for success.

The book discusses many of the common program pitfalls. It explains how to detect and avoid scope creep-the unintended expansion of program scope. It details both internal and external scope creep and stresses the importance of constant vigilance to prevent cost overruns and schedule delays.

Program Management in Defense and High Tech Environments is a comprehensive guide for early- and mid-career program managers to understand what they need to do to be successful. It is also a valuable resource for later-career program managers who want to learn through other program managers' successes and failures.

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