There are lots of different project management methodologies out there and with names such as Scrum and Lean Six Sigma, it can be difficult to know where to start. 

The good news is that we’re here to help you see past those ambiguous names and understand what each project management methodology is, what kind of organizations they’re suited for and how they can help your business. 

Having a firm grasp of these management methodologies will also help when it comes to pitching a project management tool to executives further up the chain of command.  

What Project Management Methodology is Right for You and Your Team?

  • Scrum 

Scrum is an age-old methodology that has been used by all sorts of organizations for years. But it is far from outdated: Scrum is still very relevant today. 

The term Scrum refers specifically to the briefing meetings where teams come together to discuss how they’ve progressed with a project, what their next steps are, the successes they’ve experienced and the challenges they anticipate. These meetings are brief, intensive and lead to highly expedited work.

In the Scrum methodology, work is carried out in short cycles called sprints. Each sprint is a regular cycle of work that’s designed to last no more than four weeks. After each sprint, a significant project milestone is expected to be presented. Due to its collaborative approach, the scrum methodology is highly suited to software development teams and marketing and education projects. However, its principles can be applied to many different types of teamwork. 

  • Waterfall

If you have a small but loyal base of clients, then this well-established project management methodology could be a good fit for you. It relies on several fixed, step-by-step task sequences that feed directly into each other and drive a project team towards its goal. 

Although the linear and fixed nature of the Waterfall methodology does keep things well structured and provides a reliable base, it can prove to be a little rigid and difficult to adapt when workflows or the project’s requirements change. 

Another potential challenge associated with the Waterfall methodology is the need for comprehensive documentation at every stage of the process. However, modern project management tools like Scoro have helped to remove the offline paper trail and keep the project team digitally connected to the workflow.   

  • Lean Six Sigma

The intriguingly named Lean Six Sigma project management methodology only works if everyone in the team has a thorough understanding of their customers’ needs. Lean Six Sigma is a never-ending approach to waste removal, with all tasks and activities that don’t add value to the customer identified and removed to boost project quality and customer satisfaction. 

However, there can be disadvantages associated with taking such a customer-centric approach. Everything that isn’t advantageous to the end customer is removed from the process. That means that delivering a higher quality product can sometimes come at the expense of increased costs and reduced profit margins. 

That makes it best suited to large organizations that have complex processes and a steady flow of cash coming into the business. That can be used to counter any detrimental impact that this approach may have to the bottom line. 

  • PRINCE2

This cleverly coined acronym – derived from ‘PRojects IN Controlled Environments’ – is a project management methodology that’s structured to provide clear guidance about the best ways to manage a project. It values organization above all else and hinges on every member of the team having a thorough understanding of the project details. The ultimate aim is to help businesses gain better control of their projects and generate an improved return on investment.  

The key features of PRINCE2 focus on business justification, with thorough planning and cost assessments required before a project can even begin. Quality control is then built into the project at every stage of the process.

While PRINCE2 is arguably the strongest project management methodology on this list when it comes to defying roles, planning and learning from experiences as you go, its reliance on strict rules can lead to delays. 

As you might expect, this methodology is most prominently used by large, sprawling organizations such as the UK government, where justification is required at every stage of the process. It’s also commonly used in the construction industry, where the autonomy of every phase of PRINCE2 methodology means that if one part of a building project comes to a halt, all other parts of the operation can continue. 

Read more about the PRINCE2 methodology.

Finding the Right Fit for Your Business

Now that you know all about some of the different project management methodologies that you can apply to your project, the next step is to find the best fit. Although you may not hit on the perfect fit immediately, eventually you will find the right solution for your team, your skillset and your business.