>Three Models of Project Management

Posted: February 19, 2011 in Uncategorized


Two models of the Project Manager’s role are common. The first puts him or her at the centre of the hub, co-ordinating activities between teams or individuals (Figure 8.4).


Figure 8.4. Project co-ordination

The danger with this model is that the Project Manager can easily lose control of the management process, as all work is carried out by, and decisions are taken between, parties at the rim, with no more than token reference to the Project Manager. An alternative model (Figure 8.5) reflects the traditional organisational hierarchy. This recognises the authority of the Project Manager, but implies that decisions are taken at the “top” and communicated downwards. This is unsatisfactory since it ignores the fact that expertise in specific areas lies near the “bottom” of the hierarchy – and decisions are, wherever possible, arrived at by negotiation rather than by declaration.


Figure 8.5 . The hierarchical view of Project Management

A more satisfactory model (Figure 8.6. below) reflects the best of both preceding models. The Project Manager is clearly in possession of the requisite authority, but informal (or even formal) reporting and communication between other parties, without reference to the Project Manager, is recognised. This is a delicate tension, since the Project Manager must be appraised of all important aspects of the project as it develops. Finding the right balance in any project takes time and care.


Figure 8.6. The delicate tension.




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