Consider the work breakdown structure shown in Figure 11–20. Can the project be managed from this one sheet of paper assuming that, at the end of each month, the project manager also receives a cost and percent-complete summary? During 1992 and 1993, General Motors saved over $2 billion due to the cost-cutting efforts of Mr. Lopez. Rumors spread throughout the auto industry that General Motors was considering a plan to offer subcontractors ten-year contracts in exchange for a 20 percent cost reduction. These long-term contracts provided both GM and the subcontractors the chance to develop an informal project management relationship based on trust, effective communications, and minimum documentation requirements.

 a. Is it conceivable that the cost savings of 20 percent could have been realized entirely from the decrease in formalized documentation?

b. Philosophically, what do you think happened when Mr. Lopez departed GM in the spring of 1993 for a senior position at Volkswagen? Did his informal project management system continue without him? Explain your answer.

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