I had an interesting conversation the other day with an old colleague and he said “Project Management has essentially becoming a stripped down version of management. They have removed all of the tasks and busy work of management and shifted it to PMs, while leaving them with little authority. Most organizations don’t let the PM develop the budget or truly own it. They are given a budget and track against it…sometimes, the project budget is completely yanked right out from under them. Most decisions that have any real impact are brought before some kind of board via a change process. They cannot hire or fire anyone. They usually don’t have a say in the roadmap of projects and often aren’t even told how their initiative effects/supports the organizations strategy.” He finished with “so why do they have manager in their title?”
If you have followed me for any amount of time, you know that I am a firm believer that most organizations are leveraging project management completely wrong. I wrote a post on TalkingWork about the value of PM and feel strongly that the plug-and-play approach is a huge mistake for our industry. PMs should be right up there with management consultants, financial advisors, lawyers, etc in the skills they deliver and in the strategic, advisory capacity they should act on.
What are your thoughts on all this? Does this align with your experience/s? Outside of the agreed upon project scope, do you have authority as a Project Manager in your organization?