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Why Project Managers Should Be Called Problem Managers

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Recall the last time you were assigned to a project. Was it different than the time before that? Didn’t the situation repeat itself - another project in dire straits. Wasn’t the schedule late? Weren’t the expenditures out of control? Was the quality much to be desired? And Management’s message? It was the same, wasn’t it - FIX IT, FIX IT QUICK!

How many of you go through the same situation again and again? You land a project with incompetent leadership, in a place with ill-defined project management methodology, unrealistic stakeholder expectations, extreme lack of planning and overwhelming number of issues? Regardless of the company or industry you work in, one thing you can always count on - sooner or later, you will be called to solve problems and depending on how early you are called in, these problems may be large, or impossibly complex.

Can you perform miracles on a failing project? Statistics are against you. About 68% of IT projects fail. Some statistics show that if a schedule is delayed even by a couple of weeks within the first few months then it would be extremely difficult to get the project under control regardless of how many resources you engage. What then? Then you become part of the statistics of failure.

One thing is clear: Project Managers are required to be miracle workers more often than not. And you can count on the fact that Project Managers with a PMP designation after their names are expected to perform miracles on a daily basis. No wonder most companies nowadays are requiring all new hires to be PMP certified.

What is your job designation? Are you a project manager, or an actual Problem Manager?

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