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The Rock n’ Roll of Project Managemement

What Pete Townshend Teaches Us About Project Management

In this PM Hut article, author Carl Manello incorporates the lyrics of Pete Townshend, guitarist and songwriter of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame band The Who, into the inner workings of efficient project management delivery. When projects start to fall apart, it’s easy to blame someone, and usually it’s the project manager the blame is put on. Now instead of driving the wedge further by blaming other fellow team members, Manello advises to first build a solid foundation and then try a different approach to what is needed to be done. By creating the right kind of firm structure, establishing governance and constant monitoring of its proper implementation, teams are able to manage issues swiftly and continue moving on towards meeting goals.

Using his client as an example of change towards a more solid foundation for effective delivery, their “PMO”, aka decision-making team, consisted of the heads of each department, from HR to IT, who then met to discuss a handful of items such as status reviews, milestones, and issues. So it wasn’t a project manager leading the program but rather a member of the senior leadership team.  Project managers were just the support structure.

Next time, try a different approach to what works and what doesn’t work for increasing project management delivery. Build a firm foundation first, and the rest will fall into place. Remember these words said by the author:

So as you move into your next business critical or enterprise-wide business initiative, ensure that you are setting up the appropriate level of controls; the right kind of “PMO”; and that you are focused on enabling people through collaboration instead of driving a wedge and looking for someone to blame. Leaning on Townshend’s “same gun” metaphor, we don’t simply want to use the same tools used last time… unless it was proven to work. Find a better way to build a foundation to support your castle so it doesn’t slip into the sea.

To read the full article, click here:

About Gavin Martin

Information systems architect / technical design authority with over 20 years experience delivering small-scale through enterprise systems to commercial, finance and government customers.

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