in categories: project management
Any Client responsible for the overall delivery of a capital project will appoint a Project Manager to manage the detail and protect the interests of the Client’s organisation. The Project Manager can either be an employee of the organisation (which is more common when the organisation regularly undertakes projects) or a Consultant Project Manager from the private sector.
Project management is a complex matter involving a significant number of issues that must be dealt with by a lot of people, companies and suppliers. It is the clear responsibility of Project Managers to work through these details and they have their own management systems and processes for dealing with them.
The best Project Managers go one major step further. They do not just deal with the technical detail. They cut through the complex detail and keep three simple questions in mind:
- Is the project on target to get the Client precisely what they want from the project?
- Is the project on target to deliver the project within the budget?
- Will the project finish on time?
Effective project management requires the ability of the Project Manager to “think like a Client”, but there is no doubt this is no substitute for the Project Manager gaining a detailed understanding of what the Client really feels by communicating clearly, frequently and thoroughly. In addition, the Client can make an enormous contribution to the project by asking good questions that get behind the detail presented to them. These are often called the “so what” questions and they ensure that the Project Manager keeps on their toes, just as public accountability or the scrutiny of a political opposition improve performance of government.
Traditionally, people have stressed the importance of a good brief at the outset of the project and while this is undoubtedly true, a project is a long-term venture. During the life-cycle of a project, it is much more likely for management pressure to be applied or sensible decisions to be made throughout the project when a Client and Project Manager keep their eye on the overall objectives and are at one about what to do about it if things deviate from the target.
A project is therefore much more likely to succeed if there is a close relationship and a strong relationship between the Client and the Project Manager.
by Jeremy Sneddon
| 08/08/2017 12:44 |comments powered by Disqus