The Execution Phase is when the project finally gets under way in earnest, the project's plans are implemented, and the product is finally developed or built. It is where the concepts of planning turn into the realization of outcomes and where most of the project time is spent. It is also where the project is at its greatest risk for failure.
The most important thing in this phase is to be disciplined in following the plans that have been developed in the planning phase and to use the Change Management process when they need to be modified. It is also important to recognize the practical truth that the plans will not survive the execution intact, but disciplined execution to the plans will allow the project's challenges to be overcome. This is where the project manager's skills come into play.
The PMF shifts its focus for the Execution Phase. While the previous sections focused on what to do, and why to do it, this section focuses on the best way to do it. The approach is at a more practical, hands-on level, with each best practice identifying practical tips for best results and describing additional considerations that may impact the project's success.