Project Management Institute

Flexibility at different stages in the life cycle of projects

an empirical illustration of the "freedom to maneuver"

As all experienced project professionals know, managing projects involves managing uncertainty. To do this successfully often requires using a flexible approach to effectively control each of a project's many phases. This article examines--via a survey of 48 Norwegian government projects--how the flexible approach's freedom-to-maneuver attribute affects a project manager's ability to manage a project from inception to completion. In doing so, it discusses the literature on using flexibility to manage projects, noting the advantages and disadvantages of doing so. It describes approaches--developed by other researchers--for integrating flexibility into project implementation. It also overviews the survey's methodology and its primary concerns and challenges. It then analyzes the survey results in relation to using the freedom-to-maneuver attribute when managing projects.
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