Disciplined project management: The key to process improvement program success

Weiyong Zhang, Arthur V Hill, Roger G. Schroeder, Kevin W Linderman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


This research study is based on the premise that process improvement programs such as Six Sigma, Lean, and Lean Sigma are very important and deserve serious academic research, but that definitional problems make it very difficult to study any specific type of process improvement program. Therefore, this study defines two organizational level program management factors: Strategic Project Selection (SPS) and Disciplined Project Management (DPM). Guided by the internal fit theory, this research empirically examines both the direct effect of SPS and DPM on organizational performance and the impact of the fit between SPS and DPM on organizational performance. Using empirical data collected from 53 plants, this research reveals that at the organization level, SPS partially mediates the relationship between DPM and organizational performance. This insight contributes to both theory development and practice, suggesting that a viable strategy for a process improvement program's success is to focus on DPM in order to enhance SPS and ultimately achieve organizational performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAcademy of Management 2008 Annual Meeting
Subtitle of host publicationThe Questions We Ask, AOM 2008
StatePublished - Dec 1 2008
Event68th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, AOM 2008 - Anaheim, CA, United States
Duration: Aug 8 2008Aug 13 2008


Other68th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, AOM 2008
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityAnaheim, CA


  • Disciplined project management
  • Quality management
  • Strategic project selection


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