Poll Results: Is Project Management a Profession Yet?

Here are the first results (31 responses) from my latest poll “Is Project Management a Profession Yet?”  (BTW, if you haven’t given your two cents, centavos, etc., the poll link is here.)

For now, I’ll note that my answer is “No, not yet”.  I do believe that PM will eventually be recognized as a profession of sorts.  However, per a comment by Craig Brown, I’m not sure that “professional” status will be central to the identify of the field.

More about the results and my take over the next few days.

Poll Reminder — Is Project Management a Profession Yet?

Don’t forget Crossderry’s latest poll question: Is Project Management a Profession Yet?  Please enter your answers and comments on Crossderry’s right sidebar (or you can use the direct URL here). 

I’ll blog on the results once we get a reasonable number of responses (we’re at 22 now).

New Poll — Is Project Management a Profession Yet?

The recent spate of comments have inspired my next poll question: Is Project Management a Profession Yet?  Please enter your answers and comments on Crossderry’s right sidebar (or you can use the direct URL here). 

I’ll summarize the results after we get a reasonable number of responses (FYI, my last poll had 59 total).

Corner Cutting Survey 2nd Answer: Performance Appraisals

The corner cutting poll’s second answer (at 18 percent) remains Performance Appraisals for Project Team Members.  This result wasn’t a shock at all to me.  Only relatively mature project organizations even mandate that project managers conduct performance reviews.

As anyone who has been in the SAP ecosystem knows, SAP is a matrixed organization.  This model is a great advantage in at least this aspect of implementing project management: we have an already-established approach for “additional appraisers”.   The reviews are embedded in our project management methodology and our HR processes:

As part of project closing, the project manager conducts final reviews and evaluations of the team members. The project manager and project team member should review and sign the additional appraiser form during a final meeting before the team member leaves the project….  Every member of the team should be evaluated prior to the project ending or the team member leaving the project.  

In other words, project, program, or PMO leadership has the responsibility for performing reviews even when we don’t have direct reporting responsibility for project team members.  This approach allows the PMO to have “soft oversight” of technical and functional resources we don’t directly own.  It also provides excellent opportunities to give future managers hands-on coaching experience.

Corner Cutting Survey Top Answer: Not communicating with senior management

Executive body language after cancelling too many meetings

The corner cutting poll’s top answer (at 22 percent) remains Executing planned communications with senior management.  This answer matches our own experience within SAP, which indicates that proper stakeholder management decreases the probability of risk events, shortens their duration, and lessens their total impact. 

In our experience, the most frequent communications mistake was failure to execute planned executive-level messaging, which eroded the project manager’s position in the eyes of sponsors and other leaders.  Such an erosion of a project manager’s position leads to negative second-order effects, including:

  • Mistrust of the PM’s ability to lead and prioritize.
  • Senior management bypassing the PM in favor of direct communication with team leads and vice versa.
  • Exclusion from decision-making bodies or meetings.

PM Corner-Cutting Poll Results — as of 25 Sept

I had 46 49 (51 now) responses to the my survey question “What are the most common areas that are “cut” in projects or programs?” Below is a bar graph with the current results (I’ll keep the poll open for a while on the right-hand sidebar of Crossderry).

In future posts, I’ll have some commentary on the “top” answers.

Don’t forget the “corner cutting” poll

I’m getting some good response to the “corner cutting poll” on the right sidebar of the blog itself, but I’ll leave it open for a while longer. 

For my newsreader subscribers, the poll’s direct URL is here: http://www.polldaddy.com/p/775626/

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