Forty-four processes are defined by the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK). These processes are divided into nine categories known as knowledge areas. It is not necessary for each of these nine knowledge areas to exist in every project, but it is important for project managers to recognize the knowledge areas that are most relevant to their project. Of the nine knowledge areas defined in the PMBOX, Project Integration Management, Project Time Management, and Project Communications Management are the three most critical to the success of the trade show project.
The Project Integration Management Knowledge Area is the category of processes that brings together the various aspects of project management. As the knowledge area that focuses on identifying and coordinating other processes, Project Integration Management is involved in every aspect of project management from planning to monitoring to control. Even though the trade show project team is a fairly small group, the need for integration and coordination is vital. It can be presumed that the project charter authorizing the team to commence with the project has already been developed. Additionally, the scope of the project is fairly straightforward. Of the remaining Project Integration Management processes, project execution and monitoring will happen as the project takes place. Therefore, the only processes in this area that need special attention involve the development of the project plan and closing the project. It is important that these processes receive the full attention of the project manager as this is where problems will be spotted and rectified (Project Management Institute, 2004).
The Project Time Management Knowledge Area focuses on completely the project in a timely manner. This knowledge area is concerned with scheduling activities and ensuring those activities stay on schedule. The upcoming trade show in Kansas City is ten weeks away. The trade show project team will be under a tight timeline to get all of the project’s goals accomplished within those ten weeks. Although the primary project activities have already been identified in the project plan, the Project Time Management Knowledge Area will work to refine the schedule of these activities in terms of time taken and order performed. It is vital that all activities occur at their scheduled interval to avoid a disaster at the trade show. The experience of the project team will be important here as their time estimates will be vital to the scheduling process (PMI, 2004).
The final knowledge area that is most relevant to the trade show project is Project Communications Management. This knowledge area is responsible for generating and distributing project information. Generally this knowledge area would not be quite so important on a team of three individuals like the trade show project team. In this case, a vital component of the project involves working closely with the sales team to identify trade show participants and train them appropriately. This communication with organization members outside the project team requires the effective utilization of 75 percent of the Project Communications Management processes. The team will have to develop training materials for the trade show participants. This documentation will require planning. Additionally, the team will advise the sales management regarding what skills or knowledge will be required at the show. Finally, the project team will work directly with the selected participants to bring them up to speed on the new product being highlighted at the show. This communication with individuals outside the team must be managed closely as it is a vital piece of the project (PMI, 2004).
Although these three knowledge areas are vital to the success of the trade show project, each of the knowledge areas has a role to play. For example, the processes of the Project Human Resource Management knowledge area have already selected the project team members. Developing and managing the team is now the responsibility of the project manager. Similarly, many of the processes of the Project Scope Management Knowledge Area were utilized to define the scope of the project, although much of this activity took place before the project team was identified. As the project moves forward, it is the responsibility of the project manager to ensure that the scope is adhered to or necessary changes are documented. Therefore, the three knowledge areas mentioned previously represent the key areas that must be focused on to ensure the trade show is a success. Nevertheless, all knowledge areas are important to the final outcome (PMI, 2004).
Project Management Institute. (2004). A guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (3rd ed.). Newton Square, PA: Project Management Institute.