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The Handbook of Program Management: How to Facilitate Project Succss with Optimal Program Managment [Kindle Edition]

James T. Brown
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)

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Book Description

As a program manager, you are first and foremost a leader--one who must create, manage, and continually improve a culture that ensures the success of your project managers. Establishing and maintaining processes that greatly reduce the chances of project failure is paramount to achieving the competitive edge your company seeks.


The Handbook of Program Management gives program managers at all levels the techniques to put such processes in place as well as consistently integrate new technology and new people into these processes, thus producing superior products and services. Dr. James Brown, an internationally recognized authority in program and project management, explains how to strike a crucial balance between operations and project implementations-the precise point where you must nurture repeatable success.


Outlining the differences between the roles of program and project managers, Dr. Brown provides proven principles for establishing a successful program management culture that is supported by enthusiastic personnel and stakeholders. He shows you how to develop the attributes of an effective program manager, from having a vision and strategy for long-term improvement to assessing people and building relationships to analyzing a myriad of means for accomplishing program objectives. You'll see how to


  • Readily adapt to changing business conditions and turn chaos into clarity
  • Mentor and coach project managers in terms of stakeholder management
  • Make strategic program process decisions that positively impact your culture
  • Build strong teams on multiple levels
  • Plan an effective program execution
  • Manage risk in an environment of uncertainty

You'll also learn the keys to proper portfolio management and how to capitalize on positive program outcomes. Nowhere else will you find such comprehensive, authoritative information on meeting the new standards of program management--Dr. Brown's The Handbook of Project Management is the definitive resource.



Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Testimonials about The Handbook of Program Management

"Brown's book captures the essential skills of program and project management. It serves as a "how to" guide for those entering the business, as well as a refresher on the skills and attributes for those ready to take the next step. The book effectively defines the leader's role in creating the team culture and environment for success". - Eugene F. Kranz, Apollo 13 Flight Director, Retired Director NASA Space Operations, Author of Failure is not an Option

"Program management is one of the toughest jobs a person can hold ... and James Brown knows Program Management. Here's a chance to learn from the scar tissue of others rather than your own." - Norman R. Augustine, Retired Chairman and CEO, Lockheed Martin Corporation

"Finally, a pragmatic book that shares the secrets behind successful program management. If I was giving one book to program managers this would be it! Any business leader in today's environment of accelerating change will benefit from this book." - Jack Cooper, Former CIO, Bristol-Myers Squibb

I found Dr. Brown's book to be an excellent treatise on the challenges of program management, and, a very good tutorial on leadership principles to assist Program Managers. - General Lester L. Lyles, Former Commander of Air Force Materiel Command


Product Details

  • File Size: 724 KB
  • Print Length: 288 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Up to 4 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill; 1 edition (November 15, 2007)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0015Z7VBA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #329,833 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
39 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Common Sense Book on Program Management January 19, 2008
By B. W.
Format:Hardcover
I've read the book from cover to cover and it's a excellent pragmatic book that explains how to manage both small and large programs. I can easily see myself using this as a reference for many years to come especially when I find myself trying to figure out how to handle one of the many of situations the author describes in his book.

The chapter on attributes of an effective Program Manager was really helpful to me as I was in the process of assigning one of my staff as a Program Manager. When I read the simple to understand attributes it really helped me to focus in on who on my staff could do the role. Additionally, it was an excellent guide for my selected Program Manager to use to understand what my expectations of him was.

The chapter that covered stakeholder management was another excellent chapter that I have sense asked all of my Program AND Project managers to read. I did this because it's an excellent chapter on helping the Program and Project Managers to understand what stakeholders REALLY expect of them. Additionally he goes over the types of stakeholders that you can run into and simple yet effective methods to work effective with them. For example he talks about the meddling stakeholder which all Program and Project managers run into. Here he guides you though why they might be meddling, such as they recently got burned by a prior project or there is a distrust with the organization. In these situations he recommends on involving them through many tasks and details. They want to meddle great jump in the mud, roll up your sleeves and help, otherwise step back and let those truly involved in the project get the work done while properly informing all stakeholders.
Over all this book is a really good and easy read.

I expect to be referencing for many years to come!
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book for beginners and pros alike March 9, 2009
Format:Hardcover
If you are a program manager, or thinking of becoming one, you will want this book. Dr. Brown shares his wisdom on the program management without overburdening you with methodology. In reading the book, I often felt like I was having a discussion about program management with a knowledgeable and experienced colleague.

Dr. Brown clearly knows what he is talking about. His time at NASA seems to have been a large influence on his perspective of programs. There is probably no better place to learn and experience a program management culture. Dr. Brown seeds the book with "scenarios" from his extensive experience to tie a real life event to the topic under discussion.

A couple of things I really liked about the book:

* Dr. Brown is very well-read, and not just on program management topics. He sites authors such as Dale Carnage and Robert Cialdini. He understands the broad set of skills that are needed by a program manager, and he also consistently returns to the importance of people. He has a lot of charts and "tips", but the management of the people is always in the forefront.
* The book is very well laid out - 10 chapters covering the fundamentals. Each chapter contains advice, tips, and useful tools. Dr. Brown does not stress the tools, rather he uses them as examples or methods of achieving the goals. In the risk chapter he has an example of a 5x5 risk matrix, but goes on to say that a 3x3 or 4x4 will work just as well. He stresses that important point is to perform the risk analysis and management, not get caught up in the details of the tools.
* There are several quotes that really hit home. Early in the book he talks about program management being the place where "operations and project management collide.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very, very well done March 30, 2008
Format:Hardcover
It is obvious to me that the author spent a lot of time thinking about this book before he started writing it. I bought this book to use as a reference while studying for the PgMP exam and found it to be very helpful for providing another perspective beyond the PMI standard and the exam preparation book that I bought.

For me, the ordering of topics is very logical and the writing is very clear. Where examples are necessary, examples are provided. Where topics are a bit more obscure, Mr. Brown takes the time to provide explanations to help you understand. I really can't find any major faults with this book.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
I can tell when I like a PM book after I'm done with it, and I don't mean from a kinesthetic standpoint, I mean from a physical standpoint. When a Project (or in this case, Program) Management book gets to me, it has dog-eared corners, drawings, notes, and yellow highlighter marker all over it.

And this book is one of those that has a whole mess of bent corners, drawings (one of which I actually will share with you), and it caused the demise of my trusty yellow marker. May it rest in peace.

Dr. James T. Brown has written the book to which I refer, "The Handbook of Program Management". As you can tell, I like the book even though I disagree with Dr. Brown on some points. One of those points is the title. First: the word "Handbook". This book was better than a handbook, at least how I think of handbooks. It read very well (unlike my stereotype of a handbook which a choppy, reference guide) and was full of "gems" from real example projects and programs. The other word is "Program". While it's of course true that the book focuses on Program Management, my issue is that it is an excellent book for Project Managers, as well. This is covered in the subtitle, "How to facilitate project success with optimal program management". I know it's long, but perhaps that - or some shorter version of it, like "Project Success through Optimal Program Management" - should have been the title! I guess I just don't want to see Project Managers miss out on the good things in this book - and this is one of the reasons I am blogging about it on a Project Management post.

I really liked the way in which Dr. Brown distinguished project and program management.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is full of practical and useful advice for Program Managers...
Everything in the book aligns with my personal experience, so I have high confidence in the origin of the examples and advice. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Matt Linden
5.0 out of 5 stars Dr. James T Brown is the best!!
This is a must have for any Project Manger. I have had the pleasure of hearing Dr. Brown speak. His book reads as if he were sitting in you living room having a conversation with... Read more
Published 8 months ago by bhearn
4.0 out of 5 stars Valuable Foundation Reference
My supervisor loaned me a copy of The Handbook Of Program Management when I got my first role as a program manager. I found what Dr. Read more
Published 12 months ago by cheryl finley
5.0 out of 5 stars The Program Management book was succinct , to the point and insightful
Any large managment of a program, whether is education, law engineering etc, the management of program separates the boys from the men for the delivery on time and on budget... Read more
Published 17 months ago by Bernard W. Martin
5.0 out of 5 stars This is a Must Read for All Leaders, Coaches,and Managers!
Dr. Brown's book, "The Handbook of Program Management", is a must read for all leaders, coaches, and managers! The wisdom speaks to you from a variety of perspectives (i.e. Read more
Published on June 14, 2012 by Tjuan Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended for any one leading in a medium-large organization
This is an excellent look into the pit falls and best practices of running a program. Many people act as program managers without having that title, and they often just figure... Read more
Published on January 31, 2012 by Michael Anderson
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Read and Precursor in preparing for PgMP Exam
I was looking for a good reference when trying to understand the nuances of program management and came across Dr. James T Brown's 'The Handbook of Program Management'. Read more
Published on June 11, 2011 by Sridhar Peddisetty
1.0 out of 5 stars buy it elsewhere
Just talked to support and they stated this will take about 3 months to ship. Barnes and Noble ships it in under 24 hours. Go buy it there.
Published on December 4, 2010 by Default User
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book with lot of common sense
This is good program management book with lot of common sense suggestions to improve the process around your day to day work.
Published on December 4, 2010 by praveen
3.0 out of 5 stars Plain common sense
Disappointing book based only on soft skills type of common sense. If you are looking for good tricks and practical, pragmatic advice... . Read more
Published on November 24, 2010 by GC
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More About the Author

James T. Brown Ph.D., president of SEBA® Solutions Inc., a Registered Education Provider for the Project Management Institute, has provided training and consulting services for dozens of companies nationally and internationally. He has sixteen years of NASA experience that includes "hands on" experience as a team member, project manager and serving in executive level organizational leadership roles.

James is the author of The Handbook of Program Management published by McGraw-Hill. He has been published in PMI Community Post, PM Network, PE Magazine, Projects@Work, The Systems Thinker and PM World Today. A recognized authority in project management, he is a frequently invited keynote speaker on project management areas of interest and leadership.

Dr. Brown has a patent for a project scheduling methodology, and has received numerous awards including "Engineer of the Year" from the Cape Canaveral Technical Societies and is a recipient of the "NASA Public Service Medal" for exceptional contributions to NASA's mission. He is a member of the Project Management Institute.

James has a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering from the University of Central Florida, a MS in Engineering Management from Florida Institute of Technology and a BS in Electrical Engineering from Tennessee State University. He is a licensed Professional Engineer (PE), a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) and Certified Speaking Professional (CSP). There are fewer than 700 speaking and training businesses worldwide that have had the honor of earning the Certified Speaking Professional designation.

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