I don't think sexual scandal *could* have any impact on project management, at least not in the US federal sector. For example, if the Secretary of Commerce (a member of the President's cabinet and the top leader in the department under which my agency falls) was found guilty of horrible sexual crimes s/he would be replaced, but projects would continue uninterrupted. The only way project management would be affected is if the Secretary's replacement implemented major changes to the Department of Commerce's strategic direction. However, that wouldn't be a direct result of the sexual scandal, but the policy changes commonly instituted by a new leader.
Can you give an example of how the sexual scandal would affect project management? I can't imagine any likely scenario for this occuring in America. The nature of Canadian business is likely very different than American business despite our shared border, so perhaps a scandal would have more impact in Canada than here.
Hi Vincent: Having managed several projects in many countries, I've never personally seen #metoo situations in the usual sense.
However, I have indeed seen cases of racial and verbal abuse.
I was fortunate that, when reported, the organizations in question responded quickly and decisively. Saving Changes...
Vincent: Thanks for posting a great question on a very contemporarry and important topic.
The #metoo movement has been much in the news in India, with prominent singers and journalists accusing prominent personalities of abusing their power. Some heads have already rolled, and rightly so.
Is this relevant to project management? Of course! After all, every edition of a news magazine or musical album is indeed a project.
As project managers, we certainly wield power in some way or the other.
We need to be extra careful to stay completely ethical, avoiding situations which may even seem to have a semblance of improper use of power.
PMI's Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct -- available at pmi.org/ethics -- highlights four key areas -- Responsibility, Respect, Fairness, and Honesty.
I believe all of these can help avoid these unethical situations. Saving Changes...
Vincent, that you felt it necessary to ask the question is evidence that things have changed. I hope that the change is more positive than negative, because by being aware of how we interact with our colleagues we can become better PMs, better collaborators, and ultimately better people. Saving Changes...
I have happened to be several times in very, very uncomfortable situations caused by a person in power, man obviously. What I witness is that despite what I consider common sense, men often do not realize that their behavior is so offensive. Movements like #metoo may sound to them like witch hunt, can cause lot of anxiety, make them feel under pressure. But what I believe helps is to continue to raise awareness and lead a dialog between men and women to explain where the borders should be.
Project management is environment where there are persons in power, for instance customers, key stakeholders, even project managers. I’m happy that this topic appears also on this forum. Saving Changes...