Do you have a PM role or title? Do you really know what it is?

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Are you sometimes confused about your project management title, as agile methods emerges?

Is your organization thinking about enterprise agility, but don’t know how to scale agile in terms of project management?

Are you hearing about management 3.0 and continuous improvement methods, as a way of getting things done rather in the form of projects?

I can only speak for myself and I had this type of questions in my mind after again and again reading long debates on LinkedIn group forums, attending Agile seminars and PMI events. My conclusion is that project management (or other ways of getting things done) is for sure changing, and it’s changing fast.

  • Projects are no longer the only form to get things done. Software development goes from increments and scrum, towards continues flow of value with hybrid agile methods, for both hardware and software development.
  • Project managers need to understand that their role is changing together with the new perspectives on project management and the way things get done or how value is delivered.
  • There is no contradiction between project managers, scrum master and agile coaches. They are all titles that often can mean different things depending on who you ask. Sometimes they are doing the same thing ;  A project manager can be responsible for a project and still act as a scrum master, in other cases they are two persons that complement each other. It’s what you do that counts – not your title!

Standards such as PMI or ISO are trying to keep up. However, anyone that believes in systems thinking knows that systems cannot bee controlled. The world of adding value, delivering project and getting things done will continue to change and adapt in the same pace as the rest of the world. However, to help set feet on the ground and get some sort of a map regarding your reality as a project manager or a PMO member, I have made a simple,  but illustrative poster, called “The PM Tuner”. It is a way to mark your reality based on some basic constraints on a scale. The marks will give you individual measurements to evaluate individually, or sum up and evaluate on an axis where I have put some different roles (I don’t like “title”). Hopefully this can be a tool to use on your agile your or in other situations where you just need to get some marking on your reality.

Enjoy, and feel free to give me some feedback! Click for PDF