Very much of the activity at companies and public enterprises is organized as projects. Project management has become an established field.
We have learned much about why projects succeed or fail. We also know much about what is necessary for project managers to succeed in their role.
"There has been a much narrower focus on the demands on the project owner," states Professor Erling S. Andersen at BI Norwegian School of Management. He is one of Norway's foremost experts on project management.
Erling S. Andersen has conducted a comprehensive study at Norwegian enterprises to shed light on the role of project owner, and to show what is necessary to succeed as project owner.
According to Andersen, the role of project manager can be divided in two:The project owner must control the project on a general level She (or he) must ensure that the project's mandate, general plans and organization are adopted, and check that the progress meets the plans adopted. The project owner must set the success and performance criteria.
To succeed in performing the two roles, a number of demands are made on the qualities of the project owner.
"The project owner must play an active role as a partner for the project manager and project team, and must be both supportive and provoking.
One of the most important qualities of a project owner is good communication skills, asserts the project researcher.
At the same time, previous research shows that the project owner should have adequate seniority and power within the organization, political knowledge about the organization, an ability and willingness to create contacts between the project and basic organization, and to fight for the project.
Study of project owners
Erling S. Andersen conducted a survey by questionnaire regarding the relationship between the project owner and project manager among continuing education and training students on BI's Master and Management programme on project management.
The survey included responses from 77 interviewees, who considered a wide range of different types of projects. Each participant was asked to choose a project they knew well. The projects also had a clearly-defined project owner.
The questionnaire was followed up with in-depth interviews with 25 selected project owners and project managers.
Most of the project owners assessed had been with the organization long enough and had held enough of a position in relation to the importance of the project.
Most of the project owners (87.5 per cent) were also very familiar with how the main organization worked, and knew how to proceed to promote the interests of the project. They were also able to build necessary relations between the project and the permanent organization.
More than three of four project owners assessment were commended for their ability and willingness to fight and take chances on behalf of the project.
Need to improve communication
The communication skills of only six out of ten project owners received a passing mark. This means that as many as four out of ten project owners assessed do not have adequate communication skills.
In the following in-depth interviews, 11 out of 11 project owners answered that they have good or excellent communication skills. The picture is much more nuanced for the 14 project managers interviewed. They believe that the project owners' communication skills vary greatly – from very good to poor.
At the very least, this means that Norwegian project owners could afford to train and develop their communication skills.
The interviews of 77 project management Master students also indicate that Norwegian project owners could afford to improve their motivation of the project team and support the project when necessary.
In this area less than six out of ten (56.9 per cent) receive a passing grade, while more than four out of ten (43.1 per cent) do not have an adequate ability to motivate project members.
Earlier this year Professor Andersen presented the results of the study at the Asia Pacific Research Conference on Project Management 2010, which was held in Melbourne, Australia.
The BI researcher received the award for Best Paper at the conference.
"Gratifying acknowledgement of work that seeks to achieve greater awareness of the role of the project owner in project management," he says.
Audun Farbrot | alfa
Construction Impact Guide
18.05.2018 | Hochschule RheinMain
New, forward-looking report outlines research path to sustainable cities
24.01.2018 | National Science Foundation
Scientists at the University of California, Los Angeles present new research on a curious cosmic phenomenon known as "whistlers" -- very low frequency packets...
Scientists develop first tool to use machine learning methods to compute flow around interactively designable 3D objects. Tool will be presented at this year’s prestigious SIGGRAPH conference.
When engineers or designers want to test the aerodynamic properties of the newly designed shape of a car, airplane, or other object, they would normally model...
Researchers from TU Graz and their industry partners have unveiled a world first: the prototype of a robot-controlled, high-speed combined charging system (CCS) for electric vehicles that enables series charging of cars in various parking positions.
Global demand for electric vehicles is forecast to rise sharply: by 2025, the number of new vehicle registrations is expected to reach 25 million per year....
Proteins must be folded correctly to fulfill their molecular functions in cells. Molecular assistants called chaperones help proteins exploit their inbuilt folding potential and reach the correct three-dimensional structure. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry (MPIB) have demonstrated that actin, the most abundant protein in higher developed cells, does not have the inbuilt potential to fold and instead requires special assistance to fold into its active state. The chaperone TRiC uses a previously undescribed mechanism to perform actin folding. The study was recently published in the journal Cell.
Actin is the most abundant protein in highly developed cells and has diverse functions in processes like cell stabilization, cell division and muscle...
Scientists have discovered that the electrical resistance of a copper-oxide compound depends on the magnetic field in a very unusual way -- a finding that could help direct the search for materials that can perfectly conduct electricity at room temperatur
What happens when really powerful magnets--capable of producing magnetic fields nearly two million times stronger than Earth's--are applied to materials that...
08.08.2018 | Event News
27.07.2018 | Event News
25.07.2018 | Event News
15.08.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
15.08.2018 | Earth Sciences
15.08.2018 | Physics and Astronomy