What is PRINCE2 Project Management? 

 October 23, 2023

By  Dave Litten

What is PRINCE2 Project Management?

Hey there, curious reader! If you’ve found yourself here, you’re probably wondering what the fuss is about with PRINCE2, and what exactly is PRINCE2 Project Management?

You may have heard the term in a meeting or stumbled upon it while looking for efficient project management methodologies. Well, guess what? You’re in for a treat because we’re about to demystify PRINCE2 in a fun, engaging manner. Ready? Let’s dive in!

Why Should I Care About PRINCE2?

Before we get into the nitty-gritty, let’s address the elephant in the room:

Why even bother with PRINCE2? Well, PRINCE2 stands out because it provides a systematic approach to project management. It’s got a proven track record, and businesses across the globe trust it to deliver results. It’s not just a fad; it’s a system that works!

PRINCE2 Unpacked: The Basics

PRINCE2, which stands for Projects IN Controlled Environments, originates from the UK government. Imagine that! A project management methodology with some serious street cred. This framework focuses on the processes, stages, and principles required to execute a project effectively.

The Mighty Seven Principles

At the heart of PRINCE2 lie its seven principles. Think of them as the commandments of this methodology:

  • Continued Business Justification: Ensure a project remains viable and relevant.
  • Learn from Experience: Use lessons from past projects to avoid making the same mistakes.
  • Defined Roles and Responsibilities: Everyone knows their role and what’s expected of them.
  • Manage by Stages: Break down the project into manageable, logical stages.
  • Manage by Exception: Senior management gets involved only when necessary.
  • Focus on Products: Define the outcome first, then decide how to get there.
  • Tailor to Suit the Project: Adjust PRINCE2 to fit the project’s size, environment, and complexity.

Process Makes Perfect

These principles tie into processes – the steps you take to manage and deliver a project. PRINCE2 boasts seven processes, each guiding you through different project phases:

  • Starting Up a Project: Kick things off and set clear objectives.
  • Directing a Project: Ensure the project stays on track.
  • Initiating a Project: Set up the foundation for success.
  • Controlling a Stage: Monitor and adjust as the project progresses.
  • Managing Product Delivery: Coordinate and oversee the delivery of outputs.
  • Managing a Stage Boundary: Make decisions at crucial points.
  • Closing a Project: Wrap things up neatly and learn for next time.
Prince2 Roadmap 2020
PRINCE2 roadmap 2020

The Cherry on Top: Themes

While principles guide behaviour and processes dictate actions, themes add the final layer to PRINCE2. They’re aspects of project management you need to address continually. The seven themes are:

  • Business Case: Why are we doing this project?
  • Organization: Who’s involved, and what are their roles?
  • Quality: How do we meet the expected standards?
  • Plans: What’s our roadmap?
  • Risk: What might go wrong, and how do we deal with it?
  • Change: How do we accommodate changes?
  • Progress: Are we on track?

Why PRINCE2 Rocks Your Project World

PRINCE2 isn’t just another methodology; it’s a way to ensure everyone’s on the same page, manage risks, and drive a project to its successful conclusion. Its structure means you always have a clear path forward, no matter the project’s complexity.

PRINCE2 vs Traditional Project Management: The Showdown

Hold on to your hats, folks! We’ll delve into the spicy debate: PRINCE2 vs. Traditional Project Management.

While traditional methods have their merits, PRINCE2 brings a lot to the table that can make a project manager’s life easier and far more efficient. Let’s explore why PRINCE2 often gets the crown in this royal showdown!

Clarity and Structure Galore

Traditional project management often relies on the expertise and instincts of the project manager. While this can work, what happens when you have a new or less experienced manager?

PRINCE2 offers a structured approach with transparent processes. It’s like a roadmap that, when followed, leads to project success—no more guessing or relying solely on intuition.

Roles? Defined!

In traditional setups, roles can be confusing. With PRINCE2, everyone knows their role, responsibilities, and expectations immediately. Clear delineation means fewer toes get stepped on, and more work gets done efficiently.

Risk Management Like a Pro

While traditional methods address risks, PRINCE2 has risk management built into its core. With its proactive approach, PRINCE2 allows you to anticipate, address, and mitigate threats before they become catastrophic.

Adaptability is its Middle Name

One size only fits some in project management. PRINCE2 gets this! It’s designed to be tailored to any project, regardless of size or complexity. Whether you’re launching a new app or organizing a mega event, PRINCE2 moulds itself to your needs.

Benefits That Make Project Managers Gleam with Joy

Now, if you’re a project manager wondering, “What’s in it for me?” here’s the scoop:

Confidence Boost: With a robust methodology like PRINCE2, you’ll approach projects more confidently and assuredly.

Enhanced Credibility: Knowledge of PRINCE2 can make you stand out in the job market and give you an edge in your professional growth.

Better Control: PRINCE2’s systematic approach means you always have a pulse on where the project stands.

Continuous Learning: The built-in review processes allow constant learning, ensuring you continually evolve and refine your approach.

The Verdict: PRINCE2 Reigns Supreme – Your Project’s Best Friend

While traditional project management has moments of glory, PRINCE2 offers a more systematic, adaptable, and risk-averse approach. For project managers keen on delivering consistent results and upping their game, PRINCE2 is a no-brainer!

There you have it – PRINCE2 in a nutshell! With its guiding principles, actionable processes, and consistent themes, it’s no wonder this methodology has taken the project management world by storm.

If you want structure, clarity, and a proven framework for success, PRINCE2 has got your back.
Remember, every project deserves the royal treatment. Why not give PRINCE2 a try? 😉


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Dave Litten

David spent 25 years as a senior project manager for USA multinationals, and has deep experience in project management. He now develops a wide range of Project Management Masterclasses, under the Projex Academy brand name. In addition, David runs project management training seminars across the world, and is a prolific writer on the many topics of project management.

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