Project Management

Lessons From the Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire (Part 9)

Jerry Manas, PMP

Even during the so-called rise of Rome, as we can see, there were really many rises and falls (just as with any corporation). All in all, however, despite the ups and downs, Rome was growing during that time (which is more than can be said for its decline), and the excesses of the odd emperor didn't typically impact the average person. So, from a very high level, we can consider this "the rise."


So what do we know so far about how Rome went from monarchy to republic to the largest empire the world had ever known? What led to its greatest successes during those thousand years?


We already know that they tied all of their objectives to on overall goal--satisfying the gods' wishes that they extend their form of civilization to the rest of the world. We know that they inspired loyalty by positioning their objectives as being preferable to the alternatives of tyranny or barbarism. We know that they valued obedience, although sometimes had brutal ways of insuring it (today there are better ways, and even some of the Roman emperors were more enlightened than others).


We also know that they valued family and education, to make people well rounded and balanced, and to improve society as whole. Finally, we know that they fostered engineering as a core competency, and that they were innovative yet problem-driven, practical and efficient. They did not like to reinvent the wheel …

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"Art is the most intense mode of individualism that the world has known."

- Oscar Wilde