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“Management is doing the right things.” Peter Drucker, the famous author of The Effective Executive, said that leadership is doing the right thing. As project managers, it is obvious that our job is to deliver and manage projects. It’s in our job title. Should we be concerned about how to lead our projects, about strategy, and about doing the right thing? Who is going to lead them well if we aren’t? Listen to today’s podcast and learn what it means to project managers to lead their projects, not just manage them. Also, how to combine project management and project leadership.
Thank you for tuning in. I’m Ben Aston. Welcome to the DPM Podcast. We are on a mission help project managers succeed and help people who manage projects deliver better. We are here to help you elevate your project management skills. Check out thedigitalprojectmanager.com to learn about the training and resources we offer through membership. Clarizen, a leader in enterprise portfolio and project management software, brought this podcast to you. Clarizen.com is a great place to start your search.
Today, Rebecca Germond is joining me. Rebecca is a Critical Mass program director. She was actually hired by me four years ago during my time at FCV. Now she has moved across the pond and is a program manager in the UK. Rebecca, I am curious about what a program director is at Critical Mass, and how does it differ from a project manger.
Awesome. Great question. Hi, Ben. Thank you for having me. So, yeah. A program director is somewhat different from a traditional PM. Program directors typically manage multiple PMs and multiple projects. We have many large clients with 30+ staff. It’s crucial to have someone who oversees all operations for all the simultaneous projects. Some clients have 10, 15, or 20 projects at once. All of these people do their own thing and the program director ensures that everything goes according to plan.
Cool. So, yeah. The project managers manage the day-to-day operations of the project. You have a 50,000-foot view of all that is happening in the projects. It’s great to see people use different heights to refer to how high they are. Is it 10,000 feet or 50,000 feet? It is up to you to pick a large number.
[crosstalk 00.02:54] I am curious about the tools you use to manage the big picture of the various projects and their health. I assume you prioritize resources or if you have retained staff you don’t have to reprioritize as much. How do you manage the big picture view of all the projects?
Yeah. Great question. It is a lot of spreadsheets, I’m sure. We have all the tools that agencies need to book resources, manage time and manage timesheets. However, when you have a large program or a lot of wor, it is difficult to manage all of the things.