If you want to manage a PRINCE2 project successfully you must follow the 7 Principles of PRINCE2, follow the 7 Themes of PRINCE2 and use the 7 Processes of PRINCE2. In today’s post, we are looking at the 7 Themes of PRINCE2.
The themes of PRINCE2 describe the qualities that make up project management that you must address to have a successful project. All the themes can be tailored to suit the project (as we saw in the 7 themes of PRINCE2).
The 7 Themes of PRINCE2 are as follows:
- Business Case – Why?
- Organisation – Who?
- Quality – What?
- Plans – How? How much? When?
- Risk – What if?
- Change – What is the impact?
- Progress – Where are we now? Where are we going? Should we carry on?
1. Business Case
All projects start with an idea.
The idea should provide something useful to the business. The Business Case is a document that says what makes this project useful.
Wondering why you are doing this project? Check the Business Case.
Need to know if changing the direction of the project will still be useful? Check the Business Case.
Need to know what the end product should look like? Check the Business Case.
All projects involve people.
Some people will benefit from the project. Some people will manage the project. Some people will create the products of the project.
The Organisation theme tells you all about all the people, who is doing what and who is getting what.
For Projects to have been worth it, they need to be high-quality.
The project manager (PM) must agree with the people benefiting from this project (the stakeholders) and the people making the products, how good the product will be. Then the PM makes sure that level of goodness is what the stakeholders get.
If the stakeholders need a lower cost, then the PM will have to get them to agree to lower quality and vice versa.
For a project to succeed, you must know how to do it and when to do it.
Plans go hand in hand with quality. Once you know what to make, you need to know how to do it well.
The plans are the matched to each person at each stage of the project. Everyone should know what to do and when to do it, regardless of their status.
The PM will also refer to the plans when they communicate updates on the project to the stakeholders. Things going according to plan, is good. Not going to plan and we have a problem.
Projects go wrong. But, you can make it less wrong.
Operations have likely been perfected over a long time of figuring out what works and what doesn’t.
A project is generally new. New is uncertain. Uncertainty leads to things going wrong. Some of these things can be predicted and maybe even prevented.
Managing risk is vital.
Projects aren’t set in stone.
Situations in the business change so the projects change to keep up.
This theme deals with changes that can be managed in a project. This could be the PM responding to changes the stakeholders want or the products not suiting the Business Case.
Projects cause things to change, positive change is progress.
This theme explains how the project matches the plans for the project. Is the project performing going well? Does a problem need to be escalated? Is the project as far along as it should be?
Progress also tells you if the project should continue. Perhaps you have spent too much time and money and not got enough results. Ending a project that produces no results is valuable to the business too, in the resources it saves.
The book goes into each of these themes in detail in their own chapters, but now you have a high-level idea of what each theme is and how it’s important to project management.
If you have any questions, please let me know in the comments below.