Lean Project and Portfolio Management (LeanPM®) Framework

Redefining #ProjectManagement. Free to Read, Free to Use.

Lean Project Management (LeanPM) Framework

Think Lean in Project Management.

Building on the success of the Lean-based approaches in product development, construction and agile development, we believe that the future of project management is Lean.

Project Management has undergone a long evolution, yet it still faces many challenges and brings inconsistent results. 

In recent decades, we’ve witnessed disruptive innovations in this area but the traditional understanding of how and why we should manage projects, and the uncertainty it often creates, still prevails.

The time has come for significant changes that need to start with rethinking the definition of a project and the role of project management. Therefore, we decided to introduce you to our new project management framework by explaining our Manifesto on Projects and Project Management.

Introduction to Lean Project Management

Manifesto on Projects and Project Management

Instead of adopting the pre-analytical vision that projects are needed or simply exist – and therefore must be managed – let’s consider whether that’s the case.

We believe that society is based on communication, interaction, and exchange. People are customers to one another and exchange efforts, skills, goods, services, information, emotions and money. Perceived value serves as a unit of measurement in this exchange.

The purpose of organizations is to provide value to society, customers, employees, partners and owners. That's why organizations create value streams – a sequence of all the steps and the supporting infrastructure necessary to create and use a product or service that brings value, from concept to realization. 

Organizations need specific initiatives to create and improve their value stream systems:

  • Initiatives to improve the existing value stream system
  • Initiatives to create new value streams involving new products or services
  • Initiatives to eliminate obsolete value streams
  • Emergency response initiatives to preserve or restore the value stream system
  • Transformation initiatives to change the whole value stream system of the organization

What’s common among these initiatives?  They’re all actions in the present that strive to create a better future – they’re a projection from the present to the future. Therefore, “project” (from the Latin “projectum” meaning “something thrown forth“) is an appropriate term to use for these endeavors.  

In an organization, projects create value through serving the operational value streams. We can view them as temporary streams (sequences of steps) that create value for the organization’s value stream system, which in turn creates value for the customers, employees, owners, partners and society. Similarly, when project deliverables are used by an external customer, benefits are achieved through the customer’s value stream system.

A project is a temporary value stream, aimed at creating or improving the value stream system of an organization or its customers, thus creating value for the organization’s stakeholders.*

LeanPM definition for a project

Project management is the practice of managing project value streams to maximize their net benefit.

LeanPM definition for project management

Trillions are invested in projects every year by companies, governments, and nonprofit organizations. Many, too many projects, fail to provide the desired benefits and waste precious resources. 

Even if we only change our perspective by adopting new definitions of project and project management, humanity can free up enormous resources and improve people's lives.

Let’s build on the past, act in the present – and create the future!

This Framework focuses on the key principles and practices that must be considered in creating that new future.  Project management needs to adopt Lean concepts to be more successful. 

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The annual world GDP is more than $37,000 billion: International Monetary Fund 

The total investment as a percentage of GDP is over 20%, so more than $7,400 billion ($7.4 trillion) are being invested every year worldwide: World Bank 

Between 23% and 44% of projects do not meet goals/intent; on average, 11.4% of investment is wasted due to poor project performance: Pulse of the Profession® 2020, Project Management Institute

*An alternative definition: "A project is a time-bound investment initiative aimed at creating, preserving, or enhancing a value stream."

  • Edoardo S says:

    Is that all or will you publish more articles?

    • Alexander (LeanPM) says:

      Hi Edoardo and thanks for asking. We’ll publish more chapters this month (July 2020).

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