Critical Path - Project Managements' Public Enemy #1
Gerald Kendall, PMP
Organizations use projects to effect change, & bring some benefit to the organization. The sooner the project completes, the sooner the organization gets the benefit. Critical Path is viewed as the longest path through a project. Logically, therefore, by focusing on Critical Path, a Project Manager should be able to get projects done in the shortest possible time. Is that true? The answer is "no", no way, and it hasn't been true for at least 30 years, since companies started doing multiple projects simultaneously. Yet the predominant PM software offers little practical help in executing projects quickly.
Here's the reality - Most of the organizations I've worked with worldwide over the past 20 years have project plans based on Critical Path sitting in desk drawers gathering dust. That happens often as soon as a project starts executing or shortly after. Many project tasks spend more time waiting to be worked on, than actually being worked on. Project duration is not being controlled by the Critical Path, but by something else.