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How to transition from managing projects to project managing

January 20, 2016

 

Decades of running projects, teaching project management and coaching project managers reveals that, for some managers, it is a daunting task to be in charge. Whether they are relatively experienced or not, the responsibility for delivering a project to time, cost and quality standards can cause managers to panic.

 

With the day job of line management or simply just fulfilling daily tasks, people can find it very difficult to find the time to execute the project management role or to put into practice the training they may have been given.

 

Our experience has shown that, to help people manage projects effectively and successfully, they need to choose to behave differently. This can become a problem for them if there is a culture in that company which doesn't help the individual to take responsibility for the project or to take the actions necessary to make the project successful.

 

Simply put, the prevailing managerial culture in the business inhibits them from doing what's necessary to get the project in on time, in line with the budget and to the quality that's required. This is why giving people trainig on the process of project management and people management does not work as well as it should. To change the individual, the culture of the business has to change, too.

 

Here is an example:

 

We are currently working with a company that has, at its heart, a new product design. They are world leaders in their field. Base level project process and management training had not achieved their desired results. Our solution to the problem was to give structured, base level project management training supported by mindset and behaviour change coaching.

 

The result:  projects that have overrun consistently by a year or more have been successfully completed months in advance of already challenging deadlines. This has made the company millions of pounds of revenue that they wouldn't have made otherwise. 

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