Project Management

Why frameworks offer more promise than methodologies for project management

Projects, programs and change initiatives are becoming increasingly complex owing to methodologies, and there may be more merit in placing some faith in frameworks instead. In fact, methodologies are a safety blanket of sorts – they offer the promise of a quick and easy way to effect personal change or organizational change, which people are quick to cling to. In this article in, Laura Copas and Steve Sewell cogently reassert why frameworks offer an increasing advantage over methodologies for project management.

What are project management methodologies?

Methodologies are like recipes which say that when specific ingredients are coupled together and cooked with certain tools, they will yield a certain dish.

The human factor

Methodologies are fine to begin with, but when the human element is added to the mix, things can become unpredictable. Individual and group capabilities, their likes, dislikes, habits, and behaviors can change the outcome of a project. This is an important element, which the methodology approach does not pay sufficient importance to.

Other issues with methodologies

Besides the human element, these are the other issues with the methodology approach:

  • Huge detailed plans
  • Detailed templates and processes
  • Monumental risk registers
  • Frustrated executives
  • Stakeholders resistant to change
  • Confusion
  • Demotivation

This is why frameworks may provide more promise, as described below.

What is a framework?

A framework as a structure doesn’t describe the specific activities that you do, rather it frames specific activities and is built on key principles. These activities will be adapted, improved upon or changed as the challenge demands.

Following frameworks is the way to go!

Frameworks provide structure for a project or change activity. Now, the choice of activities in order to achieve the desired objective can be chosen within this framework. This approach does away with the slavish way of following methodologies, which as described above, can easily be affected and influenced by the human factor, amongst other issues.

While adopting the framework approach, practitioners must apply their professional judgment, and must be able to discern what activities to choose, and indeed what to leave out in order to achieve the goal. Less experienced managers will need some assistance and guidance in this regard.

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Sapna Hiremath

Sapna S Hiremath is currently working as a Content Specialist Lead for CAI Info India. With experiences of having worked for newspapers after pursuing a Master's in Mass Communication and Journalism, she has worked in the thriving fields of Search Engine Marketing, online shopping and healthcare. Being an avid traveler, she likes being in the serene landscapes of nature, but also likes being around friends.

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