Course Syllabus
Course Script
Homework Assignments

4.3. Distinction Between Task and Project Management

Where does task management end and project management begin? Definitions can be helpful here:

“Project management is a leadership and organisational method for successfully managing complex tasks across departments and functions. … The word project is derived from the Latin word ‘projektum’ and means ‘that which is thrown forward’. So we speak of projects that lie in the future.”(16)

Another definition shows more of what project management is about in terms of content and what goals it is associated with:

“Project management as a management task is divided into project definition, project implementation and project completion. The aim is to ensure that projects are planned and controlled correctly, that risks are limited, that opportunities are exploited and that project objectives are achieved in terms of quality, on time and within budget”.(17)

Simplified, one could say that something is a project if it contains more than one task, i.e. consists of subtasks. How you deal with projects and which methods you use depends on the complexity of the project, which we will discuss in more detail below.


16 Thorsten Reichert, Project Management, page 6, ISBN 978-3-448-09350-6