David West has worked out exactly how to describe the differences between programme management and project management, and he’s kind enough to share this information with us in this blog post. As West explains, the best way to think about the difference is to compare it to the Apollo space program:
The objective of the programme had been set out by John F. Kennedy in his televised speech to a joint session of congress on 25th May 1961. Surely nobody could doubt that the endeavour to plan, design, build and successfully complete each Apollo mission represented a project in its own right. I’m also fairly sure that NASA were building towards the stated objective without much certainty at the beginning how many projects it was going to require.
The post then goes on to describe how the skills required to be a successful project manager are focusing more on early-stage work (scoping and shaping of the project).