I'm an optician, I'm about to leave my premises to put advertising leaflets on the windscreens of local cars. I have hired a temp to help me distribute the leaflets. We have fifty leaflets each to distribute.
If I want to think about this project with a view to creating many focuses and ideas, I will want a starting point -- a handle on which to base my preliminary thoughts. I'll choose a single word to start with, and the word I choose is "project". I can define a project as:
A number of activities that occur over a period of time that work towards an outcome(s).
Applying this definition to my optician project gives:
Activities = putting leaflets on cars
Period of time = this afternoon
Outcome(s) = promoting awareness of my business. Bringing in more customers
So if I refer to "the project" then my staff -- a receptionist and the temp -- know exactly what I'm referring to:
this afternoon's putting of leaflets onto cars to promote the business and attract more customers.
If I were Mind mapping then "the project" would sit proudly at the centre of the Mind map.