Newcomers to general project management might be forgiven for assuming from the title that this book is the answer to achieving success in large difficult projects of any kind. However, those more informed will know from the mention of "Agile" that this book is primarily for Information Technology and/or corporate software development practitioners. Indeed, it is as much about Product Development Management as it is about Project Management.
Nevertheless, given that clarification, the book is a masterly treatise in great detail on their new approach to effectively managing and delivering the products of complex and mission-critical projects in the Information Technology (IT) and High Technology (HT) industry/product sectors. This is especially true of those projects typically attempted in large corporations and the public (government) sectors.
The objectives of the authors of this book are particularly interesting. That is because Colin Bentley was the lead author of a small team of four, including Colin, responsible for coordinating the input from expert representatives of some twenty UK companies interested in upgrading the original PRINCE2 (P2) draft. The result of that effort was the 250-page Managing Successful Projects with PRINCE2 edition released in 2005. This version of P2 became well known in Europe and was seen as the major competitor to the Project Management Institute's Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge.
However, both are seen as being heavy in process and documentation and more suited to managing the creation of large physical products such as in civil infrastructure and the like. And, in contrast, not suited to the more social environment of Information Technology with its software development components. Hence the efforts by the above authors to develop a more relevant product development framework for the IT arena that, as observed in the title of this paper, is called PRINCE2 LEAN (P2 LEAN).
Clearly, the target audience for this book is best suited to those project and product practitioners engaged in large complex projects in the IT and HT sectors. Having said that, the book could also be of interest to other project management practitioners looking for the more specific tools and techniques that the authors have described in some detail.
About the authors
Robert K. Wysocki, PhD, has over 45 years of combined experience as a project manager, business analyst, business process consultant and trainer, information systems manager, systems and management consultant, author, and training developer and provider. He has written 25 books on project management and information systems management. One of his books: Effective Project Management Traditional, Adaptive, Extreme has been a best seller for years and is currently in its seventh edition. His most recent book is entitled: Effective Complex Project Management An adaptive Agile Framework for delivering Business Value published in 2014 by J Ross Publishing. He resides in Worcester, Massachusetts, USA.
Colin Bentley wrote the original PRINCE2 manual for the Central Computer and Telecommunications Agency (CCTA), and was the author of all revisions until the 2009 version. He was also the Chief Examiner for PRINCE2 from its beginning until 2008 and wrote all the Foundation and Practitioner Exams. Used extensively by the UK Government, PRINCE2 is also widely recognized and used in the private sector, both in the UK and internationally. For many, it is the preferred choice when compared with the Project Management Institute's A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge. In his retirement, Colin has been working on project management methodologies for complex projects, as well as for small projects. He lives in Waterlooville, Hants, UK.
1. PRINCE2 is an acronym for PRojects IN Controlled Environments. It is a de facto process-based method for effective project management. PRINCE2 is widely used in the private sector, both in the UK and internationally.
2. Abstracted from Global Complex Project Management pp. xvii-xviii
3. Abstracted from Global Complex Project Management pp. xviii-xix