I've been a part of student project teams for years now, both in highschool and at university level. I enjoy project managing but so far it's always been fictional, but as I'm going in to the next phase of my life Ive been thinking of starting up a project with real employees, money and customers.

What is there to think about going from these fictional projects to a real one?

What are the main differences in requirements management, review process etc

Thanks for any help possible.

  • 1
    Hello Michael, although this question seems to be great, I'm not sure it fits 100% PMSE... ideally we'd be having here real-world questions (with answers to be valid / useful for real projects). Maybe it could be rewritten in a way that could be more valuable? Thanks!
    – Tiago Cardoso
    Aug 5 '13 at 13:27
  • @TiagoCardoso I agree with your comment, but rewriting the question might invalidate the upvoted/accepted answer. Closing as Too Broad or out of scope per the FAQ might be better in this specific case.
    – Todd A. Jacobs
    Aug 5 '13 at 19:51


  • you can lose real money
  • you can put your family in jeopardy (loans, mortgages)
  • there won't be anybody who'll help you out (like parents, teachers) if you are in trouble
  • you'll be responsible for the life of others (your employees)
  • nobody will give you an idea (like teachers do), you have to find them
  • there won't be such thing as end of semester
  • you will work more than 8 hours a day, and a weekend won't be a weekend for you (at least at the beginning)

I suggest you to get involve in Formula SAE or some similar student competitions if your university has a team. Those are real project where you need to deliver.

''Real life'' project managing has very low tolerance for failure and 80% is a failure.

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