Project management has been around in its current form for over fifty years when work was about ‘working for’, not ‘working with’ an organisation to get results. Times have certainly changed since then, with greater expectations of commitment from both sides of the fence and ideally, a joint approach to organisational outcomes. Yet in my experience in education the way project managers are trained has not kept pace with the evolution of our workplace and businesses.
Just like our schools need to bring education into the 21st century so does project management training. Knowing the process is important but that alone does not provide business outcomes that are relevant and sustainable. That’s why I have spent the best part of the last year exploring the field of entrepreneurism and its relationship to effective project management today. In response to my findings as a director of the Australian Institute of Leaders + Entrepreneurs (aile) we are looking at project management through a new lens.
We know from research and experience that adding entrepreneurial skills to a project manager’s capability elevates them from project manager to project leader, positioning them for a seat at the executive table.
Today entrepreneurial skills are the most highly sought-after business skills, from the front line to the board room, in both large and small organisations. To thrive in our dynamic, uncertain, and fast-changing world organisations need leaders that can foster and drive purposeful change and achieve outcomes that matter at all levels – from top executives to first-time managers, and everyone in between. The role of a project manager can play a key part in this process.
Our new program, The Entrepreneurial PM: Thinking Beyond the Process, opens the possibilities for project managers and their future. It provides the entrepreneurial knowledge, tools and techniques to support project managers to have a positive corporate and global footprint.