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Project Manager : Project Manager Oct Nov 2012
www.aipm.com.au Project Manager 5 FIRST WORD HOW MANY OF US KNOW THAT the classic term 'round up the usual suspects', came from the movie Casablanca? Some may recall that Captain Renault said the line to cover for Rick (Humphrey Bogart), who had shot Major Strasser. Most will know that it is a byword for typical organisational behaviour. We note that the usual project management suspect to rustle up is often the unlucky project manager. e trouble is that the game of 'usual suspects' acts as the corporate cover for all sorts of villains, often requiring the hapless to be punished and the actual culprits to go free. In project management, this behaviour continues to be endemic because many organisations are still making slow headway in the area of organisational project management maturity. It irks me especially when this dialogue is carried into the public domain, and the generic ter m 'project management' is used as a catch-all for all sorts of poor organisational behaviours. e irony is that within the community of professional project practitioners we already have a good idea of who the real culprits are. I imagine we are all dismayed at the frequent ability of those same culprits to point the nger at the best endeavours of project managers to keep a project on the rails. For example, many organisations specify the role of project sponsors and elaborate on project sponsors' responsibilities. Yet when it is put to the test, there is no real requirement or benchmark for the competency of such a key and fundamental gover nance role. I don't assume that all sponsors are villains -- and I don't believe that sponsors necessarily go to work to deliberately underperform. Mostly it is really a matter of unconscious incompetence, of well-intentioned people not even aware of the gap between good sponsorship practice and otherwise. But I do nd it di cult to reconcile that I have frequently had this discussion at an organisational level only to be told that sponsors are too busy to involve themselves in training. Of course they are busy! ey are busy managing crises in their projects, more often than not largely of their ow n making. In my opinion, Australia is clearly a world leader in project management training and certi cation. But we are in danger of hitting the ceiling unless we open up to the need for total development of project management capacity across all levels of management. e success of the Certi ed Practicing Project Director award in AIPM, with such a high uptake, is encouraging. e uptake at this level seems to have outstripped the demand for the AQF equivalent of the Advanced Diploma in Project Management. In our next brave step of rolling out the portfolio management level certi cation (Certi ed Practicing Project Executive), we can start to make serious inroads into those areas that we know are so critical to project success. With the support of a program of professional seminars in project sponsorship, I believe we would start to kick goals in the broad improvement of organisational project management maturity. For any project manager looking for the easy leg up, I have a clear message. ere is no free lunch; learn how to de ne your total project organisation and how to engage all stakeholders, including sponsors. Let's start to recognise that in uencing is as important as leading, and we need to become adept at in uencing good behaviours at all levels of our project gover nance. David Hudson National President Round up the usual suspects! WE ARE IN DANGER OF HITTING THE CEILING UNLESS WE OPEN UP TO THE NEED FOR TOTAL DEVELOPMENT OF PROJECT MANAGEMENT CAPACITY ACROSS ALL LEVELS OF MANAGEMENT
Project Manager Aug Sept 2012
Project Manager Dec Jan 2013