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Managing Lean Project

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Managing Lean Project


With the growing complexities and scale of operations, project management has become an indispensable tool for every organization. Organizational project management is defined as the process of aligning the project objectives and practices with the overall organizational strategy as per the prevailing scenarios. One of the most sort after sporting event is FIFA World Cup, a football tournament held in the intervals of four years. Being a large-scale event, several project managers are assigned the task of managing and planning the event to ensure that all the significant activities are executed with efficiency so that the event can be hosted with perfection. The essay would elaborate the various project management techniques involved in managing a grand football event and the various concerns surrounding the same. 

i) Elaborate the following terms:

a. Voice of Customer (VOC)

Voice of customers (VOC) helps in identifying the expectations and needs of the customers, which enhances the understanding of whether the product or service being offered matches the customer expectations or not (Hauser et al., 2010). Some of the criteria kept under consideration for judging the VOC are – cost, quality, safety and service, delivery and corporate responsibility. In order to plan a large-scale football tournament, the project managers need to assure that they are aware regarding the expectations of the customers. The several sources from where the expectations of the customers or audiences of FIFA 2018 can be ascertained are – inbound communications, formal or informal methods of communication, market research, past expectations and casual contact points. 

The project managers of FIFA World Cup 2018 are entrusted with the responsibility of gauging the requirements of the customers and the teams so that needs of both the parties can be met in order to make the event a success. The managers need to inform the teams regarding the objectives of the tournament so that they can perform as per the expectations build. The project managers’ in-charge can understand the expectations of the audiences by conducting surveys on social media and following the trends on it. One of the most significant steps to be undertaken during ascertaining the needs and demands of the customers is ensuring sustainability of the process over a period of times so that the dynamicity of the audiences’ requirements can be gauged. 

The methods that can be deployed to gain VOC are:

Managing Lean Project img1

Figure 1: VOC process

(Source: Created by the learner)

b. Critical to Customer Requirement (CCR)

The critical to customer requirement (CCR) is defined as the measurable and specific expectation that a customer holds from a product or service being offered. With respect to FIFA World Cup 2018, customers have the right to decide on the viability and success of the project, based on various factors. The factors, which are considered by the audiences and have to be decoded by the project managers are – quality, availability, cost and features (Goetsch & Davis, 2014). For decoding the CCR, it is significant for the project managers to understand the needs of the customers so that they can be aligned with the project objectives and aim. 

The first requirement of the customers is safety and security. The audiences visiting the host country to view the game comes with the expectations that they would be safe and enjoy the event without any chaos. Hence, the project managers need to ensure that the schedule of the tournament is well laid out and propagated through various mediums so that it reaches the customers.  The second requirement to be taken into consideration is the cost. The customers expect that they would be charged with affordable prices for the services they receive during the World Cup. Moreover, availability is also a concern for CCR. The managers should ensure that the customers are able to book the tickets without any hassles through online booking portals. Hence, the management of the tournament should ensure that they review the requirements of the customers so that the CCR of the project can be achieved. For ultimately satisfying the customers and providing them with utmost delight and experience, the project managers would have to execute a range of acceptable performances. 

c. Critical to Quality Parameter (CTQ)

Post the identification of CCR, a set of appropriate metric or techniques are used to judge the progress, which is known as Critical to Quality (CTQ). The characteristics of CTQ parameters identified are service, transactional features or services, which impact the CCR (Critical to Quality, 2018). However, the CTQ is not a lone standing phenomenon as it is impacted by Critical to Process (CTP), which is a technique to judge the internal management processes. 

Managing Lean Project img2

Figure 2: DMADV process of Six-Sigma

(Source: Created by the learner)

In case of FIFA 2018, the project managers can deploy the six-sigma project management structure as it works based on a five-staged process – define, measure, analyze, design and verify (DMADV). In the first stage of defining, the aim of the project is laid out as regards to other quality parameters namely, experiences, safety, cost, services provide and customer reach. In the second step, the quality of the planning process and services provided would be assessed leading to determination of whether the control measures being used are satisfactory or not. Lastly, the two steps would ensure that a proper project design is being prepared and verified against the VOC and CCR, making the tournament a success. 

ii) Ways to implement the lean project management for hosting the FIFA 2018

In order to ensure that the project execution of FIFA World Cup 2018 is a success, the management needs to follow the lean project management approach, as it would help in reducing the wastage and enhancing the quality and the services would be delivered based on the customer demands. Implementation of the lean project management technique, help in effective delivery of services to the audiences by using several project management tools discussed further. 

In relation to the football event being discussed, the project managers would find these tools and PMBOK guidelines effective, as it would assist them in executing an event where the audiences would have a delightful experience (www.works.gov.bh, 2018). Proper communication with the related stakeholders would help in better identification of needs leading to proper utilization of resources. The steps undertaken post use of PMBOK guideline is – identification, controlling and managing needs. In order to implement lean management in this project, the best practice would be – “Focus on customer”. It is important to understand the needs and demands of the viewers in order to complete the project successfully. While carrying out the project, the managers need to consider key satisfaction indicators of the viewers. Therefore, appropriate use of resources should be done in order to ensure the same. In such manner, the managers would be able to add value to the project, which leads to effective lean management.  

The best practice in this sector would be “performance tracking” (www.projectsmart.co.uk, 2018). This practice would help to minimise the risk associated with the project. When it comes to FIFA event, the performance monitoring would help the project manager to utilise the resources in an appropriate manner. 

“Continuous improvement” would be another best practice, which is beneficial for a sports event (Serrador & Pinto, 2015). It helps ensuring an incremental improvement, which ensures less misuse of resources. This method will help the project managers to understand the shortfalls in the process and address them accordingly. When it comes to FIFA event, the managers needs to be committed towards timely completion of the events. Therefore, improving the monitoring, implementation and risk management method continuously can be categorised as a best practice in this industry.       

iii) Identifying and elaborating the project methodologies for supporting the lean project management for FIFA 2018

Best Practices




Initiate, Plan, Execute, Monitor, Control and Closure 

The first stage of initiation involves the process wherein the project manager lays down the project activities to be conducted after taking the consent of the authority in order to proceed. In FIFA event, the managers need to identify the aims and objectives along with the implementation methods in order to ensure successful completion of the project. In the second stage of planning, a detailed project scope and time statement is prepared. All the activities are segregated in details by putting emphasis on each aspect of the task. A proper schedule is also prepared to ensure timely delivery of services. In this project, the budget allocation is the most important factor that the managers need to consider. Appropriate scope identification would help the managers in reducing risk associated with the project in an appropriate manner. In the stage of execution, the activities planned are carried out on a real time basis as per their alignment with the resources and goals set in the project charter. It requires an effective communication with both internal and external stakeholders of the project, as this would help the managers to ensure that the resources are being used to the fullest. Post the execution, the activities have to be monitored and controlled, so that they work as  planned and reap the desired results. Lastly, the last stage of closure is undertaken wherein the final reports are passed on to the stakeholders for gaining their opinion on the entire process. When it comes to the final phase, the managers in FIFA event needs to ensure high control over the activities, as it would help implementing any contingency plan as required.  


The term is an abbreviation of Projects in Controlled

Environment, which is based on principles, themes and processes.

The seven principles of

PRINCE2 model are Continuous business justification, Learning from experience, Defining the roles,

Managing the stages,

Managing the exceptions,

Focusing on the products, Tailoring the project environment as per the needs

The first stage comprises of justifying the business case, wherein the project manager would be able to validate the processes and time schedule prepared keeping in account the needs of the stakeholders and other factors like – cost, risk, quality, time, benefits and others. In case of the FIFA event, the managers need to identify risks caused by both internal and external factors. Thereafter, the mitigation strategies for the identified risks need to be planned. In case of internal risk factors, the likelihood and implement should be controlled; on the other hand, when it comes to external risks, the impact needs to be reduced. The second step is to gain experience from the past event executed. The past mistakes and issues should be documented and consulted so that the same issues are prevented from arising in future. The experiences can be drawn from three stages – commencement o the project, execution of the activities and project closure. As per the third step, the roles and responsibilities of each stakeholder should be defined and documented to ensure accountability. In this project, the internal stakeholders should be provided with different responsibilities such as public relations, risk management and performance evaluator. As per the fourth step, each step should be successively planned, controlled and monitored to ensure that the activities are being executed as per desire. For this, the project managers of the football tournament would have to segregate each activity into smaller blocks so that detailed focus can be laid. However, the next stage suggests that the objectives of the event should not be limited and certain limit of tolerance to change should be kept. The decision-making process should be governed and managed by proper authorities who have expertise in the similar areas of project management. The sixth stage suggests that complete emphasis needs to be laid on the service being provided. By adopting an output oriented focus, the managers in this event would face risks and hence, increased focus on enhancing the quality of the service would make the output fulfilling. Lastly, the complexities and dynamicity of the project environment needs to be judged so that the risks can be mitigated. By doing so, proper control can be implemented and effective decisions can be taken. 


The four main steps of organizational project management technique are – object, process, essence and affiliation 

The approach uses a framework wherein the objectives of the project are aligned with the objectives of the business. The process of alignment helps in customizing and employing the resources based on the requirements arising. It involves matching the organizational resources or inputs with the core processes of the technique that includes governance and identification of competitive advantage. Based on this process, the complexities are addressed and resolved.  


Being a repetitive and incremental process the work is divided into small teams.  The steps involved in agile lean management system are – plan, analysis of requirements, coding, testing the unit and accepting. 

In the agile life cycle technique of lean project management system, all the activities are executed or performed simultaneously, demanding cooperation among the teams and its members. The project managers using this technique believe that an analysis of the customer requirement should be conducted on a real time basis instead of laying increased reliance on the past documented needs. This helps in testing the service to be delivered with prompt actions leading to quick customizations with the present trends and demands. 

Lean Six Sigma

Based on DMAIC framework – define, measure, analyze, improve and control, the lean six sigma techniques aims for continuous project improvement. 

Aiming at continuous quality improvement of the project undertaken, it firstly defines the various opportunities at disposal to improve in order to achieve the goals by getting large payoffs. In case of this event, the managers need to ensure cost effective activities, which will further ensure high profitability. The performance standard needs to be set based on the cost associated with the project.  Secondly, it measures the present performance level against a set standard and then leads on to identifying the gaps present causing issues in quality. Identification of performance level in light of the set benchmark will help the managers to bring continuous improvement in FIFA event. Next, it identifies the improvement opportunities that would give the best outcome and lastly, steps are planned for maintain the quality of the project. 

Table 1: Identification and elaboration of the project methodologies

(Source: Chaves et al., 2016; Lianying, Jing & Xinxing, 2012; Cucoranu, Parwani & Pantanowitz, 2014; Kerzner & Kerzner, 2017; Burke, 2013)


The growing complexities in the project management techniques have led to the identification of plausible options. FIFA is one of the largest sporting events held in the world with several countries participating and trillions of audiences hooting for the event. Hence, it is important for the project managers to ensure that they are able to satiate the needs of the audiences by rendering acceptable quality of services leading to attainment of delightful experience. The essay discusses the various project management techniques that can be used to plan and execute the FIFA 2018 World Cup. Some of the methods discussed include – PMBOK, PRINCE2, Lean sixsigma, organizational project management and agile life cycle with the choice of technique depending upon VOC, CCR and CTQ.

Reference List

Burke, R. (2013). Project management: planning and control techniques. New Jersey, USA.

Chaves, M. S., Araújo, C. D., Teixeira, L., Rosa, D., Júnior, I., & Nogueira, C. (2016). A new approach to managing Lessons Learned in PMBoK process groups: the Ballistic 2.0 Model. International Journal of Information Systems and Project Management, 4(1), 27-45.

Critical to Quality. (2018). Retrieved from https://mn.gov/admin/assets/measurement_critical_to_quality_handout_tcm36-68613.pdf

Cucoranu, I. C., Parwani, A. V., & Pantanowitz, L. (2014). Lean Six Sigma. In Practical Informatics for Cytopathology (pp. 113-119). Springer, New York, NY.

Faculty.kfupm.edu.sa. (2018). Retrieved from http://faculty.kfupm.edu.sa/MGM/bubshait/project%20management/PDF/opm3KF.pdf

Goetsch, D. L., & Davis, S. B. (2014). Quality management for organizational excellence. Upper Saddle River, NJ: pearson.

Hauser, J. R., Griffin, A., Klein, R. L., Katz, G. M., & Gaskin, S. P. (2010). Quality Function Deployment (QFD). Massachusetts Institute of Technology, paper WIEM05-023.

Kerzner, H., & Kerzner, H. R. (2017). Project management: a systems approach to planning, scheduling, and controlling. John Wiley & Sons.

Lianying, Z., Jing, H., & Xinxing, Z. (2012). The project management maturity model and application based on PRINCE2. Procedia Engineering, 29, 3691-3697.

Serrador, P., & Pinto, J. K. (2015). Does Agile work?—A quantitative analysis of agile project success. International Journal of Project Management, 33(5), 1040-1051.

www.projectsmart.co.uk (2018). Retrieved from https://www.projectsmart.co.uk/docs/prince2introduction-ps.pdf

www.works.gov.bh. (2018). Retrieved from https://www.works.gov.bh/English/ourstrategy/Project%20Management/Documents/Other%20PM%20Resources/PMBOKGuideFourthEdition_protected.pdf

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