What does project management mean to me? A Project Manager's sermon
The world is changing at a faster and faster speed and the project management profession needs to change with it. New technologies, agile methods and global teams are just some of the factors that impact us. In addition the global economic crisis means that funding is limited and that we to a greater extent have to justify our projects, and look for new and better ways in which we can deliver the same outcomes and benefits in a cost-effective manner. There is a constant need to grow and to adapt to these factors – and that is exactly what project management means to me; the opportunity to learn and develop as managers and leaders with a view to delivering the most valuable projects to everyone involved.
As Charles Darwin famously said; “It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change”. The project management profession needs to up its game, learn from past mistakes and deliver better quality projects. For that to happen we have to question, innovate, take risks and change old working patterns that are no longer serving us. We must learn, grow and develop and utilize the most effective project management and leadership techniques available to us. We must sharpen the saw as Stephen Covey put it.
Our industry is in need of more project managers who want to learn from past mistakes and who have a real desire to develop and become great leaders and ambassadors for better ways of doing projects. And we need more senior managers who acknowledge the importance of this and who are willing to support it. Imagine what a difference that would make. Imagine if all project managers and their teams were working towards a common goal of continuous improvement and innovation, and if they shared the same enthusiasm and understanding of how to go about delivering the best possible product to the customer with the least amount of resources. That would be a dream come true! But dreams and dream teams only come about when someone takes the lead and has the vision and insight to show the way.
Our society needs project leaders more than ever before and our more-for-less culture demands it. Given the right environment, the right mindset and the right support I believe that all project managers have the potential to be great leaders. Being a leader is not something which is limited to CEOs of a large company. Anyone can be a leader within their field as it is dependent on the attitudes and behaviors that you possess more so than the job title you hold.
My vision and desire is to see more project managers transform into great project leaders; project leaders who continuously improve and innovate; who partner with their clients with a view to delivering what they need rather than what they want; and who maximize human potential by motivating and inspiring everybody around them to contribute to the project’s overall goal. My mission is to assist project managers with this transformation. To see them become valuable mentors to others and be part of a new culture in the workplace.
The world needs your genius and it needs your leadership!