Project Management

The Critical Path

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Welcome to The Critical Path--the home for community happenings and events on ProjectManagement.com! This is where you'll find community news, updates, upcoming events, featured member posts and more. We'll also be showcasing hot topics in the project management arena and bringing you interviews with industry experts. The Critical Path is our primary way of getting news out to members, so be sure to check back for updates!

About this Blog

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View Posts By:

Marjorie Anderson
Kimberly Whitby
Laura Schofield
Heather McLarnon

Past Contributors:

Carrie Dunn
Danielle Ritter
Kenneth A. Asbury
Craig Dalrymple
Rebecca Braglio
Kristin Jones

Recent Posts

Join Us for the PMIEF 30th Anniversary Celebration!

What Background Makes a Good DPO?

Virtual Experience Series Delivering Value, Creating Change & Advancing the World™

Shared Ownership in Projects. The Team Performance Domain.

Register for our next “Discover PMI - Ask Us Anything!" Webinar- featuring PMI Events!

June 2020 Community News You Can Use

Can you believe we are almost halfway through 2020? It’s definitely a year that will reign in history, and we here in the community hope each and every one of you and your family are safe and secure. We hope this feature of Community News will provide some positive initiatives going on at PMI. So, sit back, relax and enjoy all the exciting happenings surrounding us!

 

PMI Talent & Technology Symposium 2020: Another successful virtual event is in the books!  If you are a PMI member and missed the live event or wish to view a session again, the on-demand is currently available until 8 September 2020.  As we move into the new normal, the leaders of tomorrow will be those with the capacity and openness for agility and tolerance for uncertainty. This Symposium seeks to prepare attendees for the technology, work and challenges of the project economy post-COVID. Access the on-demand HERE!

REMINDER: Discover PMI – Ask Us Anything Series:  TAKE 2!  We will provide an overview of ProjectManagement.com’s new Community Ambassador Program. The community’s first Ambassadors, Emily Luijbregts and Andrew Craig, will be on hand to answer any questions. Whether you are new to the online community or are looking to become more involved, the Ambassadors can certainly help you to maximize your experience – Register now for the rescheduled webinar on 17 June!

Crisis Management Resource Center: The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically changed the way we live and work across the globe, and figures to drastically—and permanently—alter the way we live and work in the future. To help meet this pressing need, we have created a Crisis Management Resource Center to help surface valuable content on ProjectManagement.com.

Demand Diversity: The latest Pulse of the Profession In-Depth Report from Project Management Institute—A Case for Diversity—is a timely one. It shows the value and benefits of inclusive project teams, shows where companies are currently in their attitudes versus actions, and offers a blueprint for making diversity a reality. All project professionals should read it, and make sure their executive leaders find a copy in their in-boxes as well.  Check out the latest post from Aaron Smith on the ProjectsAtWork blog!

Virtual Experience Series: Coming soon - the most engaging experience you’ll attend this year. Designed to help you turn ideas into reality.  Immerse yourself in premium content from the industry’s best and brightest, and be inspired by the next-level thinking of marquee speakers and celebrities.  Speakers and sessions will be announced soon. Sign up for the waitlist to receive the official announcement and access to special offers!

That’s all for now, and we encourage you to check back for future updates within the Critical Path blog. Thank you for all of your feedback and engagement, and keep up the good work!

Posted by Heather McLarnon on: June 11, 2020 05:34 PM | Permalink | Comments (9)

May 2020 Community News You Can Use

April showers bring May flowers! We hope the blooming month ahead, filled with exciting tidbits going on at PMI, keep you smiling and engaged during these unprecedented times. We thrive on such dedicated community members like you, so be sure to give yourselves a pat on the back and know how much you are deeply appreciated! Be well and continue playing a vital role in this Community. Enjoy!

 

PMXPO 2020: This year’s PMXPO was a HUGE success, all thanks to YOU!  If you missed the live event or wish to view a session again, the on-demand is currently available until 26 June 2020. PMXPO provides an excellent opportunity to learn, earn PDUs, and broaden your perspective on project management. Learn more, and view the on-demand here!

Introducing the New PMP® Online Exam: In case you haven’t heard, you may now take the PMP exam ONLINE!  Administered on a secure platform using proven exam delivery technology, the online exam is exactly the same as the version administered at a test center: the same quality, the same questions, and there’s even a live proctor.  The only difference? You can take it in your pajamas.  With 24/7 testing options to accommodate your schedule, you can take the exam day or night.  Check it out!

Peerspective Blog: In this edition of Peerspective, Let’s meet Mayte Mata-Sivera!  Learn more about Mayte’s exciting project management journey here!

Meet Agile Reimagined:  What exactly IS Disciplined Agile?  Take a few minutes to discover our breakthrough agile solution. Disciplined Agile is a straightforward, agnostic toolkit that harnesses a world of agile practices and guides you to the best way of working for your team or organization.  In this fast-paced introduction, get a glimpse of what you’ll learn in the full online course, Basics of Disciplined Agile, – and just how it can help you, your team and your organization. Check out this complimentary session!

REMINDER: Discover PMI – Ask Us Anything Series:  We will provide an overview of ProjectManagement.com’s new Community Ambassador Program. The community’s first Ambassadors, Emily Luijbregts and Andrew Craig, will be on hand to answer any questions. Whether you are new to the online community or are looking to become more involved, the Ambassadors can certainly help you to maximize your experience – Register now!

PMI Talent & Technology Symposium 2020:  Mark your calendars!  10 June 2020, ProjectManagement.com will hold its 3rd annual PMI Talent & Technology Virtual Symposium which will equip participants with the skills to address current challenges and the roadmap to guide them through the constant change of the future. The lineup of speakers will examine the ways in which project professionals have responded to crisis and share lessons to evolve beyond it. Register now!

 

That’s all for now, and we encourage you to check back for future updates within the Critical Path blog. Thank you for all of your feedback and engagement, and keep up the good work!

Posted by Heather McLarnon on: May 07, 2020 03:16 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)

Careers in project management – what does the latest research say?

Categories: PMI

How did you become a project manager? Chances are you “stumbled into it” in the course of your job, but now it’s become your career.

As we move through this uncertain time and into what the future holds, project managers will continue to be in high demand as corporate and government entities plan projects to adapt to new ways of working and living. That’s why its more important than ever to understand how PMs become PMs, and how they progress in their career paths.

The latest issue of the Project Management Journal takes a close look at project management careers. It features research that identifies how project managers enter into, and progress within, the profession. The journal is a peer-reviewed academic journal published by the Project Management Institute (PMI)

The April 2020 issue of the journal opens with what we know about the project management career path, and why we need to know more. Project manager careers are often accidental, cross-occupational, and eclectic. Building our knowledge helps PMs plot more productive and satisfying career paths, and helps organizations foster their talent in order to benefit from more successful projects. This opening editorial is open access, which means it is available for anyone to read.

Articles in the issue investigate: the benefits of integrating project management with career studies; students’ readiness for project work; graduates’ readiness for project work; project manager competencies; factors that predict career success among project managers; and factors that stall careers. If you’re a member of PMI, access to all content in the journal is a benefit of your membership. Many universities and other academic institutions also have subscriptions to the journal.

You can find this special careers issue of the journal at https://journals.sagepub.com/toc/pmxa/51/2

Posted by Laura Schofield on: May 06, 2020 08:54 AM | Permalink | Comments (7)

4 Ways to Earn PDUs—and Reach Your 2020 Career Goals

Many project managers find themselves too caught up in deadlines to focus on their long-term careers and professional growth. But there are plenty of reasons why you should carve out time for your own professional development, no matter your industry or experience level.

For starters, professional development is key to gaining the skills and making the connections that advance your capabilities. Getting outside of your usual day-to-day—whether in-person or online—exposes you to innovative tools and best practices that broaden your understanding as a project manager. You can hone specific skills and acquire new ones that help you work more efficiently and solve problems more easily.

Professional development empowers you to increase your value to your organization—and ultimately your earning potential—by mastering the latest disruptive technologies, forecasting trends, and enhancing your leadership abilities. You can even bring clarity to your own career goals.  

At PMI, professional development units (PDUs) are an important part of your certification maintenance, but it’s not just a formality. PDUs show that you’ve actively pursued educational and philanthropic opportunities. In an increasingly competitive market, these factors can set you apart from your peers.

PMI offers four ways to earn PDUs based on your schedule and preferences:

  1. In-person events

Getting out of the office for in-person professional development exposes you to tools and tactics that you may not even know exist.

Offered in multiple locations, PMI SeminarsWorld offers unique professional development through small-group training courses. Choose from more than 60 seminars designed to meet personal and organizational needs, earning up to 28 PDUs in the process.

Other in-person events from PMI include EMEA Congress, Global Conference, and PMO Symposium®. These events feature diverse education opportunities, innovative keynotes, cutting-edge global perspectives, and networking with others who share your challenges and goals.

  1. Online courses

One of the most convenient ways to earn PDUs, PMI’s online courses cover hundreds of topics in every area of project and program management skill development, from basic to expert levels.

  1. Webinars and virtual events

Earn PDUs quickly—often at no cost—with webinars and virtual events offered through ProjectManagement.com. You can tune in live or listen to the recording when your schedule allows.

You’ll find thousands of options with a how-to for just about any subject, including stopping workplace bullying, approaching a tech-savvy board of directors, and designing more effective project management systems. Narrow your search according to industry, popularity, PMI certification, even language.

  1. Giving back

Help others while growing personally and professionally by earning Giving Back PDUs. These aren’t required for recertification but remain a great option for those with altruistic motivations. You can earn Giving Back PDUs by working as a practitioner, creating content, mentoring, or volunteering.

Make time to grow with PMI

Expand your capabilities and increase your value this year with PMI’s wide range of professional development opportunities. Earn PDUs with options designed to suit your individual objectives, schedule, and learning preferences.

Posted by Laura Schofield on: February 12, 2020 09:31 AM | Permalink | Comments (8)

The Value of a Principle-based Standard for Project Management

by Dave Violette, PMP

Those engaged in the discipline of managing projects can attest to rapid changes in approaches, methods, and techniques being introduced. The global evolution of how project management (PM) is tackled has been significant, and the pace of change continues at a head-spinning rate. These changes have made it difficult to keep up with developments; and even more, challenges efforts to link existing PM standards to new approaches. No sooner is a standard updated than some new subsuming approach or technique is developed.

Standard setting organizations are now starting to embrace the concept of defining Principles to guide the fundamentals involved in the practice of managing projects and delivering outcomes. Unlike process or approach-centered standards, which lists a series of process recommendations to meet the challenges of effective PM, focusing on Principles provides broader and more adaptable delivery guidance.

My view of PM Principles is that they represent the fundamental essence or norms that guide behavior and thinking at all levels of managing projects. Adhering to Principles helps project managers deliver better outcomes. Principles provide guidance, without imposing uniform adherence to a set of prescriptive processes or approaches.

So, where does the value of following these Principles arise? A set of Principles are used for guidance, rather than dictating how decisions are made or appropriate approaches adopted. Principles remain solid, provide stability, and focus on adapting behavior and thinking in the rapidly changing world of PM. Principles capture and summarize concept(s), action(s), condition(s), or consideration(s) generally recognized as necessary for guiding or influencing PM delivery success.

An example of using a fundamental Principle could be around the proactive engagement with stakeholders. This type of Principle would guide the selection of the specific approach for effective identification of stakeholders—those who have significant influence on project delivery outcomes. It would also provide guidance for the selection of processes to allow for stakeholder interests, rights, and expectations to be understood at a level where stakeholders are effectively engaged. The approach or processes to use needs to be flexible and adaptable to the specific delivery/business environment, so as to effectively engage the stakeholders. Following a stakeholder engagement Principle versus being tied to specific processes, techniques, or tools outlined in process-centered standards would help to ensure effective stakeholder engagement happens. Principle-based decisions can allow for varying situational or environmental adjustments needed for that project.

A second example could be around a fundamental Principle of maintaining a focus on value. Realizing value is a key determinant for project delivery success, the organization either realizes intended value or it does not. An underlying tenet of this focus is continuous evaluation during project delivery considering both the benefits and the costs to realize them—this is Benefits Realization Management. Adhering to a value-focused principle helps the project team ensure alignment with the business objectives and intended outcomes rather than a specific deliverable or result. This sets up an approach where the outcomes help assure the expected benefits from the project work are realized and the intended value to the organization is achieved. In setting up the metrics for tracking project progress, the focus on the value principle requires a means to measure and evaluate whether the project remains on track to deliver the intended value. Each project is unique so no prescriptive metric or evaluation process can work in all cases. Following a value-focused principle though allows the project team to craft metrics and processes that work in their specific environment.

Principle-based standards offer greater flexibility within and adaptability to the project delivery environment. PM Principles guide the thinking and behavior of those engaged in the delivery of a project’s outcomes. Those involved in selecting and following an approach, method, or technique for delivering a specific type of project result can look at agnostic Principles to guide their thinking and behavior versus following a set of prescriptive approaches or processes that may not satisfy the unique challenges of a given project.

Appropriate Principles provide guidance without imposing uniform adherence to a set of prescriptive processes or approaches, whilst embracing differing organizational, cultural, and industrial environments. I firmly believe that standards based on Principles remain solid, provide stability, and focus on adapting behavior and thinking in the rapidly changing world of project management, and is the best approach for the future.

Posted by Marjorie Anderson on: January 08, 2020 08:37 AM | Permalink | Comments (16)
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