Project Management Book

Using the Logical Framework for Project Management Training

Written by Paul Naybour on . Posted in Default, News

Logical framework is specifically designed for development projects. It’s a structured way of linking the overall objective for the project the desired benefits, the overall purpose the results and activities. The aim is to ensure that activities completed as part of the project are clearly linked back to the overall objective of the project and the benefits that the project seeks to achieve. It provides a structured process to think through the objectives of the project based on the needs and strengths and weaknesses of the various stakeholders and parties involved in the project. It provides a step-by-step approach to working with stakeholders to understand their needs wants and ambitions and then identifying strategies which provide real benefit to the intended beneficiaries.

A step by step approach.

Logical framework provides a step-by-step approach to the planning of projects with some easily adapted tools to use at each stage. However it’s not just about the tools the application of the logical framework is about understanding the user requirements in a detailed way and working through the different options to meet those requirements using a structured decision taking process.

Analysis

Analysis of the current situation

The first step is analysis of the current situation. This analysis looks looks at the problem or opportunity from four different perspectives. First is a detailed analysis of the stakeholders using a stakeholder analysis template, SWOT analysis or Venn diagram showing the interaction between the different stakeholders involved in the project. For complex project this stakeholder analysis is not trivial and need to be taken seriously if the root causes of the problems (or opportunity) are to be properly identified. As with everything the logical framework is working through the process that matters and not the final output.

The next step is to understand the problem or opportunity using the root cause analysis. In this way we can identify the actionable root causes which the project could address and the consequences of the problem they were trying to fix. Again working through this problem analysis improve the understanding of the project and project team and ensures buy in of the stakeholders to the final result. Once you have full understanding the problems to be overcome this problem tree, easily translated into an objective analysis which focuses on the actions that can be taken to improve the situation.

Problem Analysis

Once have a clear understanding of the different objectives this will help us to clarify appropriate strategies for the project we can use some simple but effective tools to prioritise and rank feasibility and effectiveness of these competing strategies. From there we can then identify which are the most appropriate strategies for the project to implement.

Planning

Having defined the purpose the project and selected preferred strategy the next is to ensure that the planned activities have clear linkage back to the overall benefit that we hope to deliver. This is done by using the log frame structure the log frame structure shown below links the overall objective of the project to the activities being undertaken. The overall objective of the project is often a strategic development goal linked often to national or international standards. This is supported by the project purpose which is often more local and defines the tangible or intangible benefits to be delivered by the project. The next level down the results or the outcome of the project seeks to achieve finally the lowest level we have activities that produce deliverables as part of the project plan. The logical framework uses a clear the main clincher to make sure that if the activities are completed results are achieved if the results are achieved the purpose is achieved if the purpose is achieved in the overall outcome. This clear thinking is so often missing from projects and products are produced but no benefits are derived.

Logframe Matrix

Assumptions

Key to the logical framework is the use of assumptions. It clearly identifies the assumptions that we make at each level in the objective structure. What we need to assume to be sure that they activities will produce the results that we require? What are the assumptions necessary to ensure that the results produce a purpose expected. The logical framework clearly identifies how the assumptions each level link the activities to the results of the results to the purpose and the purpose to the overall objective.

assumptions

 

Planning

The next step is production of a project Gantt chart. This defines what activities will be done by whom and for what cost. It can also helps identify the resources and the cost the project in detail. They were back in classical project management world and you find many posts on this website about the use of effective planning.

Evaluation and monitoring

There’s an old saying that what gets measured is what gets done. To each level in logical framework we define performance measures and a mechanism to collate those performance measures. So for example we define how we going to measure the results are being achieved and that the purpose is being delivered. In this way logical framework links the activities back up to the overall objective with a clear understanding what the assumptions we make it each level and the measures that are going to be used to evaluate the project.

Delivery Monitoring and control

As with any project monitoring control is really really important. A logical framework as such doesn’t address monitoring control as it primarily focus on planning. However it is important to recognise their plan is only as good as the people who follow it. And so is important as part of a logical framework training to also address how the plan will be monitored and controlled during execution phase of the project.

Parallel Project Training courses using logical framework

As a highly experienced project management training provider ala budget training has been asked by one of his clients to integrate the logical framework into some of its courses. This is proved highly successful in helping teams understand how to apply the logical framework as part of an overall project management approach. This 2-day project management using logical framework course is now available for corporate clients from Parallel Project Training. Full details this course of our own website.

LFA Course Outline

 

Gordon MacKay

Project Management and the ‘Fundamental Attribution Error’

Written by Gordon MacKay on . Posted in Project Management Articles

Q: What stands between a Project Manager and established project objectives?

A: People.

 

It stands to reason, then: findings in the disciplines of Psychology and Social Psychology are as relevant to Project Management as any endeavour necessitating the management, leadership, and coordination, of objective-focussed teams and individuals.

 

Arguably, one of the most significant findings informing these disciplines and, therefore, project management, highlights the prevalence of a phenomenon known as the ‘Fundamental Attribution Error’, and our susceptibility to it.

 

All too often, it reveals, we wrongly attribute behaviours to individuals: we put it down to their ‘disposition’, as opposed to acknowledging the influence of the ‘situation’ in which the behaviours occur. In this, it seems, we may be very much mistaken and may, in fact, be subject to a ‘fundamental attribution error’.

 

In 1961 Stanley Milgram demonstrated the capacity of ordinary citizens to inflict what they were led to believe were potentially lethal electric shocks on helpless victims; led on by the presumed authority and assurances of being held blameless by, literally, a man in a white lab coat…

 

A short foray on YouTube quickly returns both original footage and more recent emulations of this scenario. These experiments exposed the uncomfortable degree to which ‘situational factors’ trigger behaviours starkly at odds with an individual’s apparent ‘disposition’.

 

In 1971 Philip Zimbardo at Stanford University set up an experiment where volunteers were arbitrarily assigned roles as ‘prisoners’ or ‘warders’. The former were ‘arrested’ and handcuffed at home without warning then ‘incarcerated’, and found themselves, astoundingly, within the span of just one week, being systematically humiliated and terrorised, such that the experiment had to be terminated after just one week. Parallels to what occurred at Abu Ghraib abound.

 

Zimbardo’s subsequent book ‘The Lucifer Effect’ (2007), expands upon the power of a situation to trigger behaviours subjects subsequently struggle to explain. The situation, then, may have a lot to answer for. But if the situation can ‘turn the best to the worst’, the question is begged: can it not also ‘turn the worst to the best’?

 

In fact, we may of course turn this phenomenon on it’s head, and do! When coach, mentor, manager, leader, or indeed project manager, draw out brilliant ‘winning’ behaviours and performance, managing the situation or context for this to occur, is crucial!

 

I began this piece highlighting how, as projects managers, we rely on our teams: they are the interface between us and the ‘coalface’; the agents through which our projects objectives are realised, or lost.

 

In turn, wittingly or not, they depend on us; we fail in our responsibility if we do not conscientiously attend to these contextual factors, but it is a domain over which we can exert control.

 

Like landmarks in this domain, the APM BoK v6 ‘Definitions’, Section 2: ‘People’, spans the division between what is designed, and how it is implemented by people, because it is people that make all the difference between success and failure.

 

For example, simply asking how interpersonal skills, communication, and conflict are managed, exposes fundamentally empowering or disabling ‘situational’ factors for the people involved in a project. As project managers, we effectively empower or disable team members’ ability to perform to their full potential. Transactional leadership is by its nature more directive, and while this may at times be necessary, it carries a cost.

 

As Milgram and Zimbardo showed, when authority demands, and gets, mere obedience, the loss of resilience and agility attending autonomy may be too high a price to pay.

 

These insights encourage us to engineer a project environment or culture, where our people are nurtured to thrive – not as automata, inflexibly carrying out our will, but as engaged, resilient, agile and autonomous individuals: committed, mentored and empowered in their pursuit of project objectives.

 

 

About the Author

Gordon MacKay MAPM, MInstLM, holds MBA, BSc(Hons), and BA(Hons), degrees, and has been involved in both strategic consultancy and, as he now practises; in multi-disciplinary project management. For over twenty years, the author has developed and continues to refine his leadership competencies. He has also developed significant skills as Assessor / Verifier and Mentor for the National Vocational Qualifications Programme for Senior Management.

 
He is the author of “Practical Leadership” a book written as a result of his first-hand experiences and aimed at all who aspire to successful Leadership.

 

Project Management Book

Interesting PM Reads

Written by Michelle Symonds on . Posted in News

3 Steps For Harnessing Failure The Right Way

A new book published this month, Fail Better: Design Smart Mistakes and Succeed Sooner by Anjali Sastry and Kara Penn aims to help you create better project deliverables with more lasting and further-reaching impact. By learning from what worked well, and what did not, on a project you can improve your own practice, the habits of your team, and the capabilities of your organisation.

 

Agile improves but does not replace project management as we know it

 

A LinkedIn discussion on The Project Manager Network by Jim Milliken argues that the acceptance of Agile is endangered by the hype from some of its enthusiasts. Agile cannot, all by itself, do what project management does. It isn’t meant to. It is an excellent execution form when a project calls for creative invention amid great complexity and uncertainty – and the situation is suitable for frequent small-scale deliverables. It fits very usefully into the implementation phase of certain kinds of innovation projects, especially in the information technology field. It significantly improves, but does not replace, the essential core practices of project management.

 

Influence without Authority

Another insightful post “Influence Without Authority” by Lynda Bourne on the PMI’s Voices on Project Management blog.  Following PMI’s purchase of projectmanagement.com (previously gantthead.com), the PMI blog has been moved over to that site.

 

When the Solution to Bad Management is a Bad Solution

An interesting read from Glen Alleman’s Herding Cats blog about how the “solution” to bad project management may not actually fix the problem because it will not have treated the root cause of the problem, just addressed the symptoms.

 

Why Project Management Is Like Surviving The Hunger Games

 

For those hooked on the Suzanne Collins Hunger Games trilogy (and who isn’t) Elizabeth Harrin compares writes on her Girl’s Guide to Project Management blog about why project management is like surviving the Hunger Games; the need for a sponsor, a flexible plan, a creative team, a mentor and the need to be resourceful – sounds familiar.

New APMP study guide

Parallel and APM in partnership with new APMP study guide

Written by Michelle Symonds on . Posted in News

Parallel Project Training are proud to announce a new partnership with the Association for Project Management (APM) in producing a new APMP study guide, “APMP, The APM Project Management Qualification Study Guide”.

The guide, co-authored by Parallel’s John Bolton and Paul Naybour, focuses on real-life examples and practical advice for project managers in a straightforward, easy-to-understand way, with the aim of helping PMs pass the APMP exam and manage their projects more successfully. This is the first dedicated APM guide of its type for those studying for the APMP exam.

This new study guide comprises 12 sections based on the APMP syllabus and encompassing all the topics in the 6th Edition of the APM Body of Knowledge (BoK).

Based on the highly successful 2010 guide “Your journey to professional project management: How to pass the APMP” by the same authors, this is a well-researched and proven format that has helped project managers to pass the APMP exam with extremely high success rates and develop their careers in professional project management.

By partnering with the APM on this new guide it is anticipated that it will reach a new, wider audience aiming to grow their project management career.

“APMP, The APM Project Management Qualification Study Guide” will be available from December 2014, but it can be pre-ordered prior to publication.

Why The PM Method Used is Less Important than Individual Competencies

Written by Michelle Symonds on . Posted in Project Management Articles

We all know that the business landscape is changing rapidly – it seems that no sooner have we got to grips with a new technology or product than it is being replaced with a newer, better version. So organisations have to be able to respond quickly to changing circumstances, expectations and needs.

And yet some projects continue to move so slowly that what they intend to deliver is out of date long before the due date. Projects can, and must, change as they proceed but perhaps the real issue is whether they embrace change and react to it positively. The attitude to change has as much to do with the nature of individuals as it has to do with the project management method(s) being employed.

Cost Drivers in Project Management

Some would argue that this is where agile project management comes in; agile proponents will also talk about the collaborative relationships developed in an agile environment but collaborative working is not the preserve of one method or another. No single project management method will ever be the panacea for all ills because all projects are different, corporations are different and people are different. Agile projects are no more likely to succeed than traditional projects if other influences are at play.

More important than debating the benefits of “traditional” or “agile” approaches, is to focus on the people involved.

A good project manager can lead a successful project regardless of the method used, especially when backed up by a good team, but what does this really mean? A “good” project manager or team? Of course they would be expected to have certain skills or experience – they may need quite specific technical skills for an IT or engineering project, for instance, but what else?

What will make a difference to the success of a project is people who can see, and do, what is required in any particular circumstance. This is not an easy attribute to learn if it is not an innate part of your personality. But behaviours can be changed and new skills can be learnt.

It is for good reason that traditional methods of managing projects have evolved so it is important to value their benefits while accepting that the sheer pace of business in the 21st century requires a more flexible approach to project delivery, but also one that focusses on competencies – the skills, behaviours, attitudes and knowledge – of the people involved.

When we talk about a project manager’s toolbox we should be thinking not just of methods and software but also personal skills, soft and otherwise. Perhaps we should expend less energy arguing our corner over methodologies and instead look at how we, as individuals, work and deal with typical project situations – not just our soft skills but our reaction to setbacks, conflict, criticism, etc. But maybe that’s easier said than done…

Tips for New Project Managers

Written by Michelle Symonds on . Posted in Project Management Articles

Are you fresh from a project management course? Are you feeling overwhelmed or excited about the huge range of skills you need to be good at your job? From anticipating problems, to excellent communication to controlling a budget and schedule and dealing with conflict.

 

If you’ve just begun your career as a project manager, you’re about to enjoy a varied, challenging and rewarding career. Here are some great tips to help you get started.

 

Don’t just hear, listen

 

You won’t learn anything by letting information go in one ear and out the other. Now is the time to take everything in. Consider all your different team members (their skillsets, personalities, weaknesses), research project clients and identify the key senior members of management you’ll have to present to. Listen and consider everything around you, then actively engage with team members and colleagues without reservation. The more you communicate effectively with those around you, the more successful you will be in your career.

 

Be proactive and anticipate problems

 

Don’t jump straight into a project without considering all the risks effectively. Project management training courses teach risk management skills and strategies, and now’s the time to utilise those skills. How many problems can you anticipate before the project starts? You will of course come across bumps in the road, but you must experience those bumps in order to learn.

 

Project Management Education

Be a real team player

 

As a project manager you have to work for your team’s best interests and recognise, understand and utilise their individual strengths and skills. You must communicate with your team, especially if you need help. This doesn’t mean complaining to your team that you don’t know what to do, but it does mean calling a brainstorming session to allow your team to pull together and suggest solutions.

 

Know which methodology you’re using and be flexible

 

One of the biggest downfalls of more experienced project managers is the fact that they can take a liking to a particular project management methodology, and then apply that to every project even when it doesn’t suit all the projects they work on. Be flexible with the tools and methodology you use, recognising and familiarising how they work and if they will actually work for the current project you’re overseeing. If the methodology or tool doesn’t suit the project, be flexible and change your approach.

 

Understand your clients and customers

 

Who is the project being completed for? What does your organisation stand for? Who are the customers of your organisation? One of the best things you can do is really dig deep to find out about your clients and customers. In particular, understanding the values of your organisation will serve you well when you’re motivating your team, as you can always create a common goal based on a much broader ideal.

Professional Project Manager

 

Body language counts

 

Emotional intelligence matters – it’s something that comes naturally to some people but has to be learnt by others. If you think it is something you are good at, develop that skill now. Having a great understanding of human behaviour will serve you well in this industry.

 

Consider finding a mentor

 

If there is a mentorship programme at your place of work, get on board. It’s an amazing way to gain support and to learn from someone who has already been there and bought the T-shirt.

 

Savour the fact you’re new to the job

 

One day you’ll be a well-respected project manager who is expected to get it right most of the time. Right now, you’re in a very forgiving environment where colleagues will understand that you’re new to the job. Of course you’re still responsible for your project, but you’re not expected to have full authority so embrace that fact.

 

Get used to things changing

 

Project management courses teach you to be OK with change. You must be flexible and adaptable no matter what the scenario is. Environments, colleagues and projects will change all the time, as long as you embrace that and become OK with improvising you’ll be ready for each and every day.

 

 

Treat others how you would like to be treated

 

Don’t think you need to charge in and lay down the law, asserting your authority to prove yourself. Be kind, be communicative and get to know the people you work with. A likeable project manager will always gain respect from colleagues quicker than someone who has no time to listen or care for how others feel.

 

Gain qualifications and certificates

 

In the past a project manager would have one or two qualifications under their belt and that would be perfectly acceptable. It is still acceptable but you will see more and more PM’s new to the industry coming to the table with several certificates and qualifications. Not all employers care about these qualifications, but many do and taking a few different project management courses to beef up your credentials won’t do you any harm.

Some Good Project Management News

Written by Michelle Symonds on . Posted in News

We often hear about major project disasters – projects that have over-run on budget or schedule, or both, with some, such as the Montreal Olympic Stadium, over budget by a staggering 1990% and the Sydney Opera House completed more than 9 years past it’s deadline.

Of course some of these project “disasters” turn out to be national or international achievements in the long term so it is not always easy to judge the success of a project immediately after it has been completed. The Hubble Space Telescope was 500% over-budget and nearly 9 years overdue but is still in use 14 years after it was first launched into orbit and it’s observations have led to many scientific breakthroughs.

Nevertheless, it is nice to hear some good news on the project management front when a project is still underway, especially when it is closer to home. Such is the case with the new Forth Crossing in Scotland, especially when Scotland has had its share of major project disasters, such as the Scottish Parliament Building (935% over budget) and the Edinburgh tram project management disaster, which was 167% over budget and doesn’t even serve many parts of the city.

Back in 2013, members of the Scottish Parliament passed a bill to establish a new operating company to manage the construction of the new crossing over the Firth of Forth (as well as managing the existing Forth Bridge), which began in June 2011. The old Forth Estuary Transport Authority (FETA) was dissolved and staff were transferred to the new company whilst functions and assets were transferred to the Scottish Parliament in order to enable the tender process to go ahead.

This turns out to have been a forward thinking step that led to a robust tendering process and improvement in services that has resulted in the Forth Bridge replacement crossing project expected to be £50 million under budget (yes under budget, as I said it was good news). The reduced budget is attributed to successful project management and good market conditions.

Following a public consultation to find a name for the new crossing it is now known as the Queensferry Crossing and is expected to be completed by the end of 2016.

So it’s not all bad news in the project management world, maybe we just tend to report the disasters and not focus on the successes as much as we should.

replication of project success

PM News Round-Up September 2014

Written by Michelle Symonds on . Posted in News

Project Risk Management – 10 Golden Rules

  1. Make risk management part of your project
  2. Identify risks early in your project
  3. Communicate about risks
  4. Consider both threats and opportunities
  5. Clarify ownership issues
  6. Prioritise risks
  7. Analyse risks
  8. Plan and implement risk responses
  9. Register project risks
  10. Track Risks and Associated Tasks

 

Thanks to the International Business Times for these rules but why not take a look at the blog post Viewing Risk from a Different Perspective for more about the opportunities presented by positive risks.

 

Project Management Webinar – Transforming Resistance Into Support

This advanced project management webinar, to be held on 24 September 2014 from 8.00am (Pacific Time,) is aimed at anyone seeking change within their company. Whether existing issues are poor communication, lack of employee concerns or even employee resistance, the goal is to expose the audience to more efficient methodologies, tools and/or techniques that are going to build leadership skills and define project management competency.

The webinar will cover advanced concepts and objectives such as:

  • Ways to avoid costly communication mistakes that alienate employees
  • Utilise best communication practices to prevent resistance and gain employee support
  • Deflect uncertainty and anxiety surrounding organisational change

 

 

The Top Project Managers – The Skills PM’s Need to Succeed

 

Some of the top project managers to follow on Twitter share their views on the skills that make project managers successful. Hear the thoughts of Cheri Essner, Michael Alan Kaplan, Steven Baker, Susanne Madsen, Thomas Cagley and Jerry Ihejirika, and if you are not already doing so, follow them on Twitter.

 

Why is project management so fragmented in companies?

It is always interesting to read what Ron Rosenhead has to say and this post is no exception. He relates how project management in some organisations is still fragmented and un-coordinated despite extensive training. But asks questions to try and determine whether there is anything unique about project management in an organisation or whether, in fact, some businesses are just fragmented and that is just as true for, say , accounting as for project management.

Why not join in the discussion.

 

Are your project managers working too hard to be effective?

According to Peter Taylor, it is the project manager who makes wise decisions about where and how they spend their time that are the ones who will be most successful in the long run. To achieve project success in the most efficient way you must think smarter and not harder and develop a ‘productively lazy’ approach in order to achieve both successful projects but also a better work/life balance. The smart ‘lazy’ person is less stressed, more alert and delivers more as a result.

project management essentials

Viewing Risk from a Different Perspective

Written by Michelle Symonds on . Posted in Project Management Articles

Risk management as part of the project management process focusses on identifying, mitigating and controlling risks that might negatively affect the outcome of the project. We inherently assume that risk is bad and if a risk occurs then the effect must be negative.

But if we look at occupations or activities that are inherently risky such as financial trading or climbing a mountain or brain surgery, people involved in those activities understand the risks (or at least we hope they do) but are prepared to take them because the upside far outweighs the risks. The profits, for instance, of a successful financial deal, removing a malignant brain tumour to enable a patient to live a normal life, or the sheer thrill of climbing a challenging peak. In these situations risk is not a negative connotation – it is, in fact, the very thing that makes the activity worth undertaking.

So why, in project management, do we attempt to avoid all risk and view the occurrence of a risk as something to obviate when, in fact, risks could open up opportunities that could make the project more successful. Complexity in projects can never be without some risk so why not broaden our view of risk and discuss what we might gain from it and what we can learn from it instead of trying to control it?

People who are willing to take risks are the entrepreneurs, the creators and inventors; and whilst some projects may necessarily have to play safe there are others that could benefit from some calculated risk-taking. For instance, risk-taking can lead to technological innovation and progress that benefit whole societies; where would we be now without the experimentation that led to the development of modern medicines, or even just the innovations that helped develop our smartphones. Progress in any field can rarely be achieved without taking a risk.

Many IT projects are pushing the boundaries of current technology so are, on the one hand, innovating and yet we expect to manage and control the risks in a way that can stifle innovative thinking.

By embracing (and taking) risks on projects there are two potential outcomes, both of which have benefits:

  1. You achieve something better than the client and stakeholders were expecting either in terms of what you deliver or the timescale in which you deliver it so this is a win situation.
  2. You gain truly useful knowledge from the experience that you can take to the next project, knowledge far more useful than the usual points to come out of a staid “lessons learned” process at the end of a safe project. The best lessons are the ones learned the hard way—by trying and failing.

Obviously, not all projects are suitable for taking a risk in the hope of achieving greater things or learning something genuinely useful, for instance avoiding risk is necessary if you are developing safety equipment, weapons or medicines. But some projects are suitable and you could be missing out on these benefits by assuming risk is always negative.

So instead of assuming all risks are bad take a different view: risks themselves are neither good nor bad but rather it is our personal appetite (or our company’s appetite) for risk that determines how we behave when faced with a risk. It is, perhaps, our behaviour when faced with risk that can be either negative or positive. But when evaluating risks don’t just look at the downside of the potential risk occurring also look at the downside of not taking the risk – not taking a risk could perversely be the negative influence in some situations. For example a deliberate decision to not proceed with a project exactly because it is a risky venture could deprive your organisation of being instrumental in important progress – a missed opportunity.

PMI Approved project management courses

PM News Roundup

Written by Michelle Symonds on . Posted in News

Government ministers need project management training

A critical Public Accounts Committee report published earlier this week on the work of the Major Projects Authority (MPA) says there are still deficiencies in the UK government’s ability to successful deliver major projects. The report notes that 2 MPs have attended half-day or full-day project management training courses but suggests this training should be extended more widely to the highest decision-making levels of the government.

The report also says that there needs to be better planning at the outset of projects and greater transparency in decision making.

Read more on the MPA Report.

 

New Project Fundamentals Event from APM

Earlier this week the APM launched a new one day interactive professional development event called APM Presents… Project Management in Practice covering delivery of real professional projects and aimed at mid-career PMs. It will offer insights into the challenges, techniques and keys to success of projects in the real world.

Practical advice will also be available on improving your employability as a project manager, including creating a CV and networking.

Sessions will be delivered by the 14 APM Specific Interest Groups:

  • Assurance
  • Benefits Management
  • Contracts and Procurement
  • Enabling Change
  • Governance
  • Knowledge
  • People
  • Planning, Monitoring and Control
  • PMO
  • Portfolio management
  • Programme Management
  • Risk Management
  • Value Management
  • Women in project management

Should Every Employee be a Project Manager?

According to the PwC 15th Annual Global CEO Survey, businesses need to be able to quickly create new products or services, that customers will buy, in order to survive. They can, therefore, no longer tolerate inefficient processes and need all employees, not just project managers, to behave like PMs.

The survey suggests that the traditional model of project management separate from the business environment could be limiting an organisation’s flexibility and ability to respond quickly to external market forces.

 

Why Agile Project Managers Need to Relinquish Control

An interesting discussion by Dan Wood about why project managers in an agile environment need to become more spectators than players when it comes to assigning, planning and scheduling individual tasks and why they shouldn’t be actively involved at the task level. Agile project managers should not directly control the project team and their assigned tasks but, instead, provide more of a supportive role. Dan suggests they should do this through a variety of ways, including monitoring and reporting on project health to stakeholders and resist the urge to assign and control at a low level.

 

Project Management Confidence Index

According to a recent report from Arras People only 28% of project managers are happy in their jobs with 67% of project managers actively looking for a new job. Low wage rises have contributed to this dissatisfaction as at least three-quarters of projects managers have not had a pay rise above the rate of inflation in 2014.

Conversely, a majority of organisations are actively recruiting project managers this year due to increased business demand although nearly a third of companies are recruiting project managers because employees have left.

So companies need project managers and project managers want new jobs but significant numbers of project managers looking for a new position report are finding a lack of openings relevant to their skills and experience but salaries on offer are also failing to meet their expectations.

The survey also reports that 40 per cent of practitioners who started a new job in 2014 have seen wage increases of over 8 per cent on their last salary.