Project Management

Project Manager -Endangered/Evolved Role in the organization?

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Agile doesn’t have to mean end of Project management. It does mean Project managers have to adapt.

Traditionally project management has taken a linear approach and Projects had a clear definition of ‘done’. Project managers have been trained to work within the pre-defined deadlines, budgets and scope.

Few steps that can be taken by Project managers to stay relevant in the Agile transformed organization

Understand the needs/goals of agile for the organization

  • Is it to decrease the time it takes to get new products to market?
  • Is it to reduce dependence on external vendors or partners?
  • Is it because everyone is going agile?

Challenge leaders ,colleagues and other stake holders to answer the question, “If we get this right, what gets better?

Rethink the success metrics

Project managers were considered successful if they delivered specified quantity of work, on time and on budget. When they transition into Agile project managers metrics of focus should be cycle time (time taken for an item to go all the way through R&D Process).It is the direct reflection of team’ ability to learn and adapt quickly for delivery.

Project manager’s decision should be based on objective evidence such as customer input  rather than subjective, arbitrary assumptions. Project selection should be based on market data .

Adopt mindset of Enthusiastic Skepticism

Enthusiastic skepticism is a mindset to continuously seek feedback on how you can improve your processes to fit current organizational contexts. Talk to colleagues to understand hoe your work is helping them and how can you add more value to the efforts.

Act as Change agents

One of the main draw back we see in agile way of working is curtailing ambitions on the product .If there is an adoption of agile post the work involved in coming up with a product that delight the customers (eg: working backwards model of Amazon) that would be solution for loosing out creativity because of the race towards MVP.

Project managers in Agile world need to respond to

  • Stakeholders with shorter attention spans
  • Complex and unknown technical situations
  • Complex and unknown geopolitical and socio-political situations
  • Higher staff turnover
  • Greater demands being put on management teams
  • Collaborative contracting and partnering with suppliers
  • Increasingly complex regulation and governance
  • Hybrid ways of delivering better

Project managers need to be the humans on the team

They should be able to connect with others with skills that you can’t get from your robot colleague.

  • Empathy
  • Strategic thinking
  • Fun
  • Creativity
  • Motivation and persuasion
  • Thoughtful customer service
  • Listening

PMI says that by 2027 employers will need nearly 88 million project managers. So it’s an evolution of the role happening at the PM level and not an extinction.PM will be growing into thought leaders equipped with digital skills to make decisions and manage project.

Project Managers need to wear the armour of knowledge leadership and battle against Perceptions to win the war of ambiguity.










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Jisha Joseph

Jisha Joseph works as a Scrum Master with Perficient . She is a certified project management professional. She will be writing about Evolving Industry trends . In her free time, Jisha likes to travel and read .

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