5 Project Management Styles Federal Employees Must Know About


Project management

Federal employees are responsible for planning, executing, controlling, monitoring, and closing the most important projects. Project management in the federal workforce is essential for managing vital components of an organization, such as schedules, budgets, human resources, and material acquisition. This is why there is no room for mismanagement, as a single employee’s failure to manage and control the system can result in dramatic adverse effects within the organization.

Project managers must know the influence, practical or unspoken, that their actions have on their employees and workflow. So to succeed in their role, every federal employee must be well-versed in coordinating and managing the budgets and resources and measuring a project’s progress and success.

What Is Project Management?

Project management is primarily composed of the following steps;

  • Planning
  • Initiation
  • Execution
  • Monitoring
  • Closing of projects.

Every project manager, from start to finish, must outline and build a plan that will determine how different tasks will be proceeded and finished. Every project manager has a deadline and time frame to follow, and it is their responsibility to keep things moving smoothly. So when the planned timeline is ending, the project manager will have all federal employees on board, working on the same page and finishing the task on time.

A common example of project management is the development of a product. Many departments within a single organization are involved in creating the plan, marketing the product, selling it, and performing other tasks. Different teams are involved in designing the product, manufacturing it, marketing, and selling the product. However, all these teams are working as a part of a single project under one project manager, who is responsible for moving the product development to the next step.

5 Project Management Styles for Every Federal Employee

There are different project management styles designed to help federal project employees deal with their industries and individual project designs. At Management Concepts, the following are the five most important project management styles that we reserve for our federal employees’ training.

1. Waterfall Project Management

Waterfall project management simply refers to completing one task in a project before starting the next one. It is a linear, straightforward project management style that divides a project into distinct phases. Each phase or task of the project cannot begin until the previous one is completed. In waterfall project management, the responsibilities of each federal employee and project processes are clearly mapped out and defined from the initial stage. This planning design doesn’t change until the project is completed.

The steps of a waterfall project management style flow in one direction, just like a waterfall. This is why it is important to pay attention to the project timelines and task sequences. This management style is essential for larger and more linear projects that require a step-by-step completion and doesn’t need a lot of modifications.

The size of a team working under a waterfall project management style grows as they move from smaller to larger tasks. If a project design needs frequent alterations, for example, according to customer feedback or overlapping timelines, then this management style is not suitable.

2. Agile Project Management

In contrast to the waterfall management strategy, agile project management involves more iteration and releases. This project management style doesn’t have a linear nature, which leaves plenty of opportunities to adjust the planning and design along the way. This includes breaking down a larger goal into small and manageable tasks so that the teams involved in a project can work on them simultaneously.

In short, agile project management involves continuous monitoring of the process and improvement of deliverables. A federal workplace, at its core, is concerned with delivering the highest quality results and prioritizing customer value above all else. This is why a federal employee must value team interactions and adaptability when choosing this project management style.

When a project needs frequent collaboration, modification, and innovation, then agile project management is most suitable. It can break down a large task into smaller chunks which decreases the time to complete a project.

Agile management projects are broadly classified into two types;


Kanban is an agile management framework that allows federal project managers to efficiently keep track of and manage their projects. The Kanban framework is popular due to its compatibility with the existing setting of an organization.

The Kanban project management method is based on the Kanban board. This tool allows visualization of the entire project and indicates the;

  • Current tasks
  • Tasks to perform in future
  • Tasks that are already completed.

Kanban is used in any workforce setting and can help a lot in situations that involve unpredictable workloads, changing priorities, and adding tasks to existing work stages.


Scrum is another agile project management style that allows team leaders to manage and structure their work according to a given set of principles, values, and practices.

The agile work management style focuses on continuous improvement through frequent releases. It takes work and dedication from the whole team, and every federal employee must change their thinking style to deliver maximum value to the customer. Scrum, on the other hand, helps leaders and employees start thinking about building agile philosophy and principles in their everyday work style and communication.

3. PRINCE2 Project Management

PRINCE2 stands for PRrojects IN Controlled Environments. It is a popular project management style that focuses on the structure and organization of a project throughout its lifespan. It is used in more than 150 countries, as the process-based approach allows federal employees to control and organize a project more effectively.

The following core principles are responsible for creating a framework for PRINCE2 project management.

  • Continuous business justification: The project must make sense in terms of investment return and appropriate use of time and resources.
  • Learning from experience: The teams must learn from past projects and maintain a log, applying the knowledge to their new project.
  • Defined roles and responsibilities: Every federal employee must have a keen sense of responsibility and should be aware of the real decision-makers.
  • Defining project by stages: The difficult tasks of a project are broken down into smaller chunks for better management.
  • Focusing on end-product: Each federal employee must have realistic expectations of the end product and modify their work activity accordingly.
  • Scaling and tailoring: PRINCE2 project management is easy to adapt, tailor, and modify according to the project needs. This is why this project style is more likely to succeed than other management styles.

PRINCE2 project management control and organizes a project while offering enough flexibility to make necessary changes along the way. The project managers and team members spend time reflecting on each project stage and applying the knowledge to the next steps of the project. The intricate details of the process might require extensive documentation, which makes PRINCE2 a slower management style than others on this list.

4. Lean Project Management

Federal employees know the importance of making the most out of their financial and human resources. This is why lean project management is all about avoiding any waste of resources and creating more value for the customers. This management style allows the leaders to get higher quality results with limited resources, thus referring to the name lean project management.

Lean project management is more of a philosophy than a project management style. It allows the federal leaders to focus on generating efficiency across the different processes and specifying a value for the customer. Then the federal employees will identify the additive effects that all actions will have on project completion. This project management style also allows federal leaders to eliminate any processes or actions that are leading to a waste of resources and are not adding any value to the project.

5. Six Sigma Project Management

The Six Sigma project management is based on five distinct phases, focusing on understanding what the customer needs, how to eliminate waste of resources, and how to constantly improve the process in order to deliver a higher quality product.

Six Sigma has 5 phases, which are referred to as DMAIC;

  • D: Defining the project
  • M: Measuring data
  • A: Analyzing the roots of problems
  • I: Improving the process
  • C: Controlling the project by implementing solutions.


A project manager in a federal workforce must be skilled in managing projects efficiently, as well as work on supporting leadership practices like excellent communication, active listening, and clearly conveying goals. At Management Concepts, we develop customized and highly effective training programs and learning solutions for federal employees so that they can lead their staff toward the path of excellent performance, adaptability, and great improvement.

Project & Program Management
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