Control and care in big projects

Iermolenko, Olga
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There are significant differences in how project managers are recommended to engage in formal control in complex projects that are strictly limited in terms of the ‘Iron Triangle' of time, scope and budget, and how managers actually do that in practice. How managers activate their chosen strategies for organizing and controlling projects with care is rarely discussed. Two construction projects are studied (Ukraine vs. Norway). The experiences of key people involved in controlling the projects are analyzed in order to discuss how managers mobilize informal controls with care, to repair the failures of formal controls. The paper illustrates how care and control complement each other in big projects by enhancing trust, empathy, help, lenience in judgment, and courage among project participants, thus facilitating the projects' progress. The study emphasizes that how a control system is mobilized through care is more important than how ‘perfectly' it is designed.
Care, Control, Big Construction Projects, Complexity, Norway, Ukraine
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