- Initiation: The first stage where you figure out the ‘why’ of the project’s existence. You map out the project’s objective, pick a manager, and clarify your approach. The key deliverable of this stage is the project charter.
- Planning: This is where you use your PM knowledge to develop a detailed plan for the project’s execution. You’ll define the project’s scope, create a WBS, and map out a schedule. All the heavy lifting – communication plans, risk management plans, etc. – is done in this stage. Some of the key deliverables are the WBS, Gantt chart, and project plan.
- Execution: This is the “do” phase of the project where you actively track assigned tasks and ensure that the project stays on course. You’ll hold meetings, send out status reports, and ensure that the project runs smoothly.
- Control: The ‘control’ phase runs alongside the Execution phase and is focused on monitoring the project’s progress. You’ll monitor milestones, goals, and activities to keep the project on track.
- Closure: In this fifth and final stage, you’ll hand over all deliverables to stakeholders and formally close the project. You’ll also review the project for lapses, insights, and positives. The key deliverable in this stage is the project report.