Adaptive PMLC vs Extreme PMLC

Project management life cycle (PMLC) consists of sequential and overlapping project phases determined by management of an organization. These phases control organization needs and or the organization undertaking the project. Since organizations are unique and posses different goals, project management life cycles will always be shaped or determined by these spheres. Through the PMLC, a basic framework is derived that has the following structure; commencement of the project, organization and preparation phase, execution phase and project closure (Project Management Institute 15-16). There exist two types of PMLC models; Adaptive PMLC and Extreme PMLC models. Although these models use the basic framework, they also have similarities and differences.

Understanding Adaptive PMLC Model and Extreme PMLC Model

The Adaptive PMLC is mostly applied in construction industry since it offers scarce information about a project with no functional aspects of seeking solutions. It deals with high level of risks in solutions so as to achieve the goals of the project. It has four adaptive models; Adaptive Software Development (ASD), Adaptive Project Framework (APF), Dynamic Systems Development Method (DSDM), and SCRUM (Wysocki 414-450).

Extreme PMLC Model

This is a complex model and probably used on research and development projects. Phases repeat the processes in groups in a linear manner. Each phase derives its objectives from the previous phase continuously until a future goal is achieved (Wysocki, 464).

Similarities of the Models

  • The models have an uncertain solutions or outcomes since the Adaptive PMLC has a defined goal used to set the path for solutions while the Extreme PMLC lacks the goal or solutions.
  • For the models, the client’s active participation and feedback is of essence during the process. Adaptive PMLC has a set format in planning that engages the client. The whole process is client driven. According to the Extreme PMLC, the client is involved in issuing directions the project takes since the client is responsible for inputs during interactions.
  • The basic framework for the PMLC is adopted by the two models.
  • Brainstorming is required by the management for both models. Management has to discover, innovate, learn, and improve during the interactive processes in search for solutions.
  • Since both models work towards one goal of deriving solutions, the planning models are swift, leading to faster delivery of service or product in question (Wysocki 15-20).

Differences of the Models

The difference of the models is derived from project definition. Some of the differences are;

  • The goals and objectives for the Adaptive PMLC model are always known which is not the case is for Extreme PMLC. Extreme PMLC lacks a clear objective or goal. For example, a construction project has clear goals to be fulfilled. The Adaptive PMLC model will apply, but when a research and development has to be conducted concerning a construction project, the Extreme PMLC model will suit the project.
  • Adaptive PMLC model has a defined project time and costs with clear solutions during interaction.  The Extreme PMLC model lacks a defined project time and cost but seems fragmented.
  • Through the Adaptive PMLC model, businesses gain value within a time frame while the Extreme PMLC model will require processes to restart from initial stages thereby creating no value to costs incurred. It therefore has no guarantee on results (Wysocki 29-32).


Before a project can begin, the project manager must have a clear picture of the best model of approach. Through external and internal factors, a project manager is in a position to choose the best model suitable for the project.

Works Cited

  • Project Management Institute. A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge     (PMBOK) 5th Ed. Pp. 15-21. U.S.A.;Project Management Institute, Inc. 2008. Print.
  • Wysocki, Robert. Adaptive Project Framework: Managing Complexity in the Face of         Uncertainity. Pp. 15-30. Indianapolis; John Wiley & Sons. 2010. Print.
  • Wysocki, Robert.  Effective Project Management: traditional, agile, extreme. 5th ed. Pp. 297         488. Indianapolis: John Wiley & Sons Publishing. 2009. Print.
  • Wysocki, Robert. Executive’s Guide to Project Management: Organizational Processes and          Practices for Supporting Complex Projects. pp. 29-32. Indianapolis; John Wiley & Sons. 2011. Print.