Why DID we need the value of PM study?

Per a recent comment by Dr. Paul Gianmalvo (URL here, post and comment here), the results of the value of PM study do sound like they simply confirm the value of motherhood, apple pie, and clean living.  As Paul notes:

Yes, project management adds value. Of course it does!!! What alternatives are there?

I agree that the answer is obvious: competent project management is indispensable.  In fact, I believe that outstanding project management is a competitive advantage.  But that fact hasn’t always been obvious to the folks who approve project management: senior executives.  When pitching PMO and other project performance improvement initiatives, too many project management professionals launch into assertions of the value of PM.  I know… I’ve done it and see it again and again.

To me, the stunning results from the study are not that PM has value, but how poorly we still calculate and communicate the returns on our organizations’ investments.  Only 50 percent of PM organizations bother to calculate ROI?  Those must be some confident, complacent, or perhaps foolish PMOs.

When it comes time to show benefits from a PM improvement program’s outcomes, silence is death.


4 Responses

  1. Your comment on ROI is right on. When people get ready to measure return, they quickly run up against the fact that a lot of the goals and benefits of PM and IT in general are intangible. But just because something is intangible does not mean that it cannot be measured. It’s time for people to roll up their sleeves and measure both the tangible and the intangible. Rather than the 5 Why’s of problem solving, maybe we need the 5 What’s and How’s. Keep asking “What are we trying to accomplish?” and “How are we going to know that we’re there?” until you get down to the root of the matter–and the right measurement.

  2. It’s true, today it’s more important than ever to be able to stay on top of your projects.

  3. Its really true, now a days it more important than ever to manage projects

  4. Great quote from Paul above – of course project management adds value!

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