Friday, January 09, 2015

Lack of Top Management Support

Why Projects Really Fail (continued)
Lack of top management support was always one of my big bug bears and it’s just poor stakeholder management. I've been there and had to deal with it. If there is no top management support for a project then why does it exist? How can it be critical to the business if top management aren’t supporting it? 

The answer was usually that it was someones' 'vanity project'. A wise project manager will recognise this very early in a project (if not right at the start) and insist on a senior management project sponsor (who really will champion the project), then work with them to obtain organisational support. If they can't get this they must recommend cancelling the project due to the high probability/high impact risk of project disaster. This is not as easy as it sounds if the person asking you to manage the project is your boss, but hey, the reason we love project management is the challenge. If we wanted an easy life we would be line managers!  Failure to do this is just poor project management, the lack of top management support is a screaming symptom of an unwanted or unneeded project.

The Project(s)
For reasons outside of my control I have had to cancel the on-line course development project for Cassel. This is really disappointing as not only was I enjoying the experience, but I have now had to let a customer down. They have been kind enough to leave the door open for me if the circumstances change in future.

The only positive I can take from this is that I can now concentrate on my other project: working with David Morris on a revised version of Agile Project Management in easy steps, which he will be taking over after this release. We are due to complete the work on this by the end of January so it's quite tight, but hey, didn't I just say that's why we love being project managers.

Take care and enjoy your projects.


Unknown said...

I agree with your point that it is critical in business if top management aren't supporting.I think PMP program help us to deal with the daily challenges that come with every project. PMP credential proves that we have the experience, knowledge and ability to successfully lead and direct projects. I suggest SABCONS PMP training session to complete PMP certification ,for more detail you may visit

P M Blogger said...

Thanks for your feedback Tanisha, and if I've understood you correctly, you believe the answer to everything is to obtain certification. That's an interesting approach but it is not the Way of the Project Manager. The Way of the Project Manager is to learn through life and experience, not through pieces of paper.