The Project Sponsor should manage the project manager! Now, this may be news to some project managers (and some Project Sponsors!)...
The belief that all of the managing is done by the project manager is fallacious. While project governance is essentially a hands-off role, there are areas that the governance team has to manage.
These areas include – the project manager and team, (and for the Project Sponsor) the Steering Committee, key stakeholders, the scope, contingency funding and the project’s ongoing relevance and viability.
One critical area that the governance team manages is "the critical success factors" (CSFs) – those factors that are outside the control and management of the project team but need to happen or exist for the project to be successful. These are the accountability of the governance team to manage.
Some CSFs cannot be managed as they are outside the control of the organization, but these still need to be monitored as their existence or changes to their status can be critical to the project's success.
Essentially, the governance team needs to be manage a range of people, factors and issues to ensure the success of the project.
If the governance team believes that they can leave their "management hat" at the door, they are mistaken.
But, conversely, project governance is not project management. The governance team manages the key dimensions of the investment and its value realization – the project manager manages the project.
Governance is not super-project management.
How does your governance process compare? Tell me Jed_Simms@capability.com.au
Jed Simms is CIO magazine's project management columnist. Simms, founder of projects and benefits delivery research firm Capability Management, is also the developer of specialised project management and project governance Web site valuedeliverymanagement.com
To read Jed Simms’ previous 7-part series on developing a business case click here.
For previous project management articles by Jed Simms visit Project Governance Part 1: Non-understood Project Governance, Project Governance Part 2: Project Governance as Leadership, Project Governance Part 3: Project Governance as Facilitation, Project Governance Part 4: Project Governance as the Approving body, How Do You Know if Your PMO is Successful, "PMO: What’s In A Name?" and "The Self Evident Truths of Project Management".
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