Editorial Board of “Holistic Marketing Management” (A refereed journal published four times annually by the School of Management-Marketing of the Romanian-American University)
Editor-in-Chief Theodor Valentin PURCĂREA
John L. STANTON Léon F. WEGNEZ
William PERTTULA Levent ALTINAY Dana ZADRAZILOVA
Managing Director EuroHandels Institute Retail, Germany; President of EuCVoT; President of European Retail Academy; Member of the Astana Economic Scientists Club; Chairman of the Advisory Board of EuroShop; Chairman of the Board of the Orgainvent; Trustee of EHI Retail Institute at GLOBALG.A.P. Association of Management and International Association of Management, USA; Australian Graduate School of Entrepreneurship, the Faculty of Business and Enterprise, Swinburne University of Technology; Member of France’s National Academy of Scientific Research (CNRS) Professor of Food Marketing, Erivan K. Haub School of Business, Saint Joseph’s University Philadelphia, USA; Director, Institute of Food Products Marketing, Editor, Journal of Food Products Marketing Secretary General, International Association of the Distributive Trade, AIDA Brussels; Member of France’s Academy of Commercial Sciences Internet Marketing Professor, College of Business, San Francisco State University, USA Professor of Strategy and Entrepreneurship, Research Area Leader, Oxford School of Hospitality Management, Faculty of Business, Oxford Brookes University, UK Dean of Faculty of International Economic Relations, University
of Economics, Prague, Czech Republic Riccardo BELTRAMO University of Turin, Italy Sinisa ZARIC University of Belgrade, Yugoslavia Gabriela SABĂU Memorial University, Grenfell Campus, Corner Brook, Canada Hélène NIKOLOPOULOU University of Lille 3, France Vasa LÁSZLÓ Szent Istvan University, Hungary Peter STARCHON Comenius University in Bratislava, Slovakia John MURRAY Faculty of Business, Dublin Institute of Technology, Ireland Faculty of Economics,University of South Bohemia in Ceske Kamil PÍCHA Budejovice Deputy Head of Department of Business Economics, University of EcoIrena JINDRICHOVSKA nomics and Management, Prague, Czech Republic Faculty of Business, Marketing Department, Cape Peninsula University of Norbert HAYDAM Technology, South Africa Constantin ROŞCA President of Romanian Scientific Society of Management- SSMAR Roxana CODITA Technische Universität München, TUM School of Management
Dumitru MIRON Valeriu IOAN-FRANC Iacob CĂTOIU Virgil BALAURE Gheorghe ORZAN Luigi DUMITRESCU Marius D. POP Petru FILIP Ion VOICU SUCALA Virgil POPA Alexandru NEDELEA Ana-Maria PREDA Ileana PONORAN Ovidiu FOLCUȚ Doinița CIOCÎRLAN Marius Dan DALOTĂ Mihai PAPUC Gheorghe ILIESCU Alexandru IONESCU Olga POTECEA Oana PREDA Nicoleta DUMITRU Monica Paula RAȚIU Costel NEGRICEA
Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest National Institute for Economic Research, Romanian Academy; Romanian Marketing Association; Romanian Distribution Committee Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest Lucian Blaga University of Sibiu Babes-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca Dimitrie Cantemir University, Bucharest Technical University of Cluj-Napoca, Management and Economic Engineering Department; University of Glasgow, UK, College of Social Sciences, School of Social & Political Sciences; Managing Editor, Review of Management and Economic Engineering Valahia University of Târgovişte Ştefan cel Mare University of Suceava Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University
Associate Editors Irina PURCĂREA Dan SMEDESCU
Art Designer Director Alexandru BEJAN
“Holistic Marketing Management” (A refereed journal published four times annually by the School of Management-Marketing of the Romanian-American University) Volume 3, Issue 3, Year 2013
Theodor Valentin Purcărea – Editorial: Broadening our thinking, understanding the need of studying
situations in a holistic way, and the innovative project management
as a true proper way of managing change
Dominika WIECZOREK - Does age matter? Multigenerational Teams as a Challenge in Project Management
Anaïs BALCOU - New Challenges and Key Success Factors for Project Management
Amy Ibrahima POUYE - Scrum Project: A Method that Undermines the Project Manager Role
Maeva BIGOT - How to Manage Communication in Project Management?
Elsa GOBET - The Relation between Project Management and Business Corporate Social Responsibility
The responsibility for the contents of the scientific and the authenticity of the published materials and opinions expressed rests with the author.
Editorial: Broadening our thinking, understanding the need of studying situations in a holistic way, and the innovative project management as a true proper way of managing change
Some time ago we argued that the real problem today is to focus (conventional wisdom)1 on the good things, as goals you must achieve by caring about the economic and social outcomes of your actions, while surviving this actual deepening crisis and remaining still in the game for your customers, for this being necessary to have the right journey approach that will allow a valuable perspective on the steps to take if things don’t work out as you planned. Recently, we have remarked a point of view about: “How to not only survive but thrive during recession”.2 The authors found that the most successful companies viewed the recession (which accelerated the adoption of the new technologies, and eliminated the inertia) as an opportunity to work closely with their strategic accounts, by developing innovative solutions, innovation being a recession-proof. Within this context they also made reference3 to the fact that new opportunities exist for companies who can adapt to this new economy characterized by a paradigm shift in the way business is done thanks to the Great Recession. In this respect a company has to adopt a value-oriented business model considering the increasing frugality of the buyers in their purchasing because of new information technologies, reduced capital financing, and a growing cynicism towards business and government. In our last editorial we highlighted, among other aspects, that human aspect is key to project success, and a clever project needs to be supported by listening and true collaboration between all these identified stakeholders, by understanding dialectics of knowing and doing, communication and collaboration, intercultural understanding and global citizenship. And taking into account the mentioned new economy characterized by a paradigm shift in the way business is done thanks to the Great Recession, we dare to advance the idea that an innovative project management could be a true proper way of managing change by developing innovative solutions, knowing that the best transformation is only through an improved understanding of how people interpret their environment and choose to act, bridging the gap between top management and the hole organization by building hope and conviction. That is why it is important to understand the benefits of working with managers on a diversity of practical problems, to study situations in a holistic way, to comprehend the richness and complexity of real people, as Sidney J. Levy4 recommended young scholars: “focus in depth on a topic and methods that makes you expert without looking down on alternative approaches; broaden your thinking about varied rich, important, interesting issues in life; work with other people; engage with managers about practical problems and the consequences of theory.” Theodor Valentin PURCĂREA Editor-in-Chief
1 http://holisticmarketingmanagement.ro/RePEc/hmm/v1i1/7/1.pdf 2 Nickell, D., Rollins, M. and Hellman, K. (2013), “How to not only survive but thrive during recession: a multi-wave, discovery-oriented study”, Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, 28/5 (2013) 455–461, 17090979.pdf, www.emeraldinsight.com/ 3 Piercy, N.F., Cravens, D.W. and Lane, N. (2010), “Marketing out of the recession: recovery is coming, but things will never be the same again”, The Marketing Review, Vol. 10, No. 1, pp. 3-23, quoted by Nickell, D., Rollins, M. and Hellman, K. (2013). 4 Sidney J. Levy (2012) Marketing management and marketing research, Journal of Marketing Management, 28:1-2, 8-13, DOI: 10.1080/0267257X.2011.645688, pp. 8, 12.
Does age matter? Multigenerational Teams as a challenge in project management Dominika WIECZOREK
ESC RENNES SCHOOL OF BUSINESS
ABSTRACT: The purpose of this exploratory study is to examine project management within the framework of a multi-generational workforce. Conducted analysis showed the gap between Baby Boomers, Generation X and Generation Y. The process of socialization of each group, which took place at different time periods, developed in representatives from each of generation different values, skills and approaches to the work. Project manager should understand and distinguish each of the generational perspectives in order to streamline the process of accomplishing tasks in the project. However, project manager should not blindly follow the framework set by the characteristics of the generation and only treat this framework as a signpost to understand each generation. Keywords: Project Management, Baby Boomers, Generation X, Generation Y, Workers Attitudes JEL Classification: M54
Introduction The project team is one of the most important key success factor in the whole project. Without its members and their commitment to teamwork no project would be successful. Many studies have emphasized the diversity of the project group, linked to the interests, cultural background and age. Diversity, which is consider as a factor that foster innovation and creativity of the team members. Nevertheless, every coin has two sides, and what is the advantage and can be translated into success of the project taken as a whole, on the other side, for the project manager can be a challenge to diversify approach to each of the team members. Many sociological studies confirm the existence in contemporary society three generations: Baby Boomers, X and Y. A number of publications highlights the different characteristic of the generation and influence on the workplace. Do the same approach should be applied in the management of the project teams? Do representatives of Generation X working in a team with people from Generation Y will encounter difficulties, and their innate qualities will cased a different approaches to accomplish the same task? What is the role of the manager in that kind of team? In this article the readers may find the view of theory related to the work of employees from generations Baby Boomers, X and Y in the workplace linked to the specific of project management. Particular attention will be paid to the characteristics of each group and the possible influence of these characteristics on the project management. Conducted analysis will brighten issue of impact that Baby Boomers, Generation X and Y have on the project and also will try to answer the question what are the main challenges that project manager have to face with. GENERATIONS AT WORK The time of birth, social and historical events influence the process of socialization of people of similar age. For this reason, in society there exists the group of people with similar characteristics, so called generation. Specific features that are characteristic for each cohort have big influence on people’s expectations, actions, and mind-sets. Moreover, this factors can shape our attitude to work, way of communication with other people and work ethics (Johnson L., Johnson M., 2010, p.4). There is no rough framework defining where is the beginning or the end of generation. Nevertheless, many studies have confirmed the effect of time on the personality of adult person. Due to the year of birth, in sociological research have been highlighted four cohorts: Silents (which will not be considered due to the fact that most members of this generation is no longer on the labor market), Baby Boomers, Generation X and Y. Based on the gathered information, below there have been highlighted the key information characteristic to selected generation. 1. Baby Boomers Baby Boomers, there are people born beetwen1946-1964. Boomers were born after War World II. There was not easy
times especially for their parents that had to have dual careers. In these times, the cult of work has been developed and because of that many Baby Boomer submit to the value of the work on the different values of life. They are also very loyal to their employers (DelCampo 2011). Baby Boomers quickly learned to use the Internet and electronic devices, but prefer direct communication style. They treat personal growth as a key goal in life. In the workplace, many people see them as workaholics who spend long hours in the office They are not afraid of new complex tasks, Baby Boomers are often are seen as multi-taskers. Carrying out the tasks they prefer to have the autonomy and independence (Adecco, 2007). This autonomy is connected with flexibility. Majority of Baby Boomers claim that being able to work ﬂexibly is important (Hewlett, S., Sherbin, L., Sumberg, K, 2009). 2. Generation X This term defines people born between 1965-1980. The representatives of this generation grew up in a more favorable terms than their parents. For this reasons are more open to new technologies, and traveling does not cause them big problem. Many socio-economic changes that have occurred in their childhood, caused that the main motto of their lives is “no guarantees”. Generation X is less loyal to their employers than the Baby Boomers. In addition, X-ers have the need to be valued, therefore require more coaching and feedback from their superiors (Adecco 2007). Many of them earned as a children, that’s why are self-reliance. On the other hand, the early presence in the labor market caused that they suspicious and cynical. Generation X values the family life and work-life balance (Gipson, J., Greenwood, R., Murphy, E., 2009). Most of this people has appropriate skills and qualifications, because they received a good education (Adecco 2007). Representatives of Generation X are nowadays the largest workforce in the labor market. 3. Generation Y Generation Y, there are people born between 1980-2000s. Most of surveys describe this generation as very ambitious, who are able to put a big effort to attain objectives. They also feel comfortable working with people from different ethnicities and cultures. Members of generation Y like to work in teams and this kind of job motivates them most. They like to expand their social networks. Y-ers like their coworkers to be readily accessible. Most of them wants their work to have positive impact on the world. Values such as eco-consciousness and social responsibility are additional factors that motivate them to work (Hewlett, S., Sherbin, L., Sumberg, K., 2009). The sense of belonging to a project that is consistent with their values are important to them. Generation Y can be described as individuals who are working because they want to, not because they have to. These employees will prefer the flexibility and work on their own terms. Internet savvy and excellent ability to use electronic devices, cause that generation Y is more likely to work remotely (Adecco 2007). Table no. 1: Generation’s Core Values
Source: Del Campo, R., 2011
To summarize conducted analysis, in Table no. 1 there was collected the most important characteristics of each generation. MULTIGENERATIONAL TEAM AS A CHALLENGE Why managing different generations should be considered as a challenge? It is simple, Project Manager should be aware that each cohort has different attitude to tasks, way of communication, values etc. Also, it should consider how to ensure optimum working conditions, so that everyone can do their best while working on the project and cooperating with each other (Zemke, R., Raines, C., Filipczak, B., 1999). Real challenge is to bring together all this behaviors and values characteristic to each generation and create a coherent project team (Gelbtuch J, Morlan C, 2010). According to Zemke, Raines, and Flipczak (1999), in Table no. 2 are summarized how the approach of manager should look like at the individual elements of the management process. Table no. 2: Key principles in managing generations
Make them aware that their work will be valued and their experience will bring a lot to the project. At the same time show that project is a challenge Show how the project will contribute to the success of the company in the future. Baby Boomers are future oriented Show them the opportunities offered to them from the project They need development in strategic planning, budgeting, coaching skills, and all the “soft stuff”
Ensure that the work does not destroy their work-life balance. Stress that their ideas will be evaluated purely on merit, not on years of experience They are not afraid of asking the questions, give them a list of who to call for more information.
Let them know that this work will help them to achieve personal goals
Show clear picture of project- what’s good and what’s not.
Let them know that Show opportunity will be able to devel- of working in team op their skills. where gender are treated equally. Training and develThey want to development are signifop their skills. Make icant attractors for sure that they will Xers. They tend to have a good training read less, so keep program materials brief Focus on personal They need construc- Create the conditions approach, perks and tive feedback and in which they can rewards for long feel the control over combine work with hours work achieving personal goals. Coach tactfully. Do Create a policies that Create mentor not blame them, and will make them feel programs. Connect show that they can like insiders quickly. Yers with most achieve more in a They need a person experienced people, kind and gentle. Ask to support them and make sure that they questions to underanswer their quesfit together stand their point. tions. Source: Zemke, R., Raines, C., Flipczak, B., 1999
The multigenerational team management is a challenge for managers. The different personalities of team members require different approaches. On the basis of the statement made in the table, it should be noted that the guarantee of good teamwork is the understanding of each of its members. First of all each generation has different approach to hierarchy and authority. Both Baby Boomers and Generation X can be described as non-authoritarian. First generation likes team work and equality, the second one feels the best having independence and dislike micromanagement. Only Generation Y needs hierarchy and authority at workplace, because they are loyal and respectful (Gelbtuch J, Morlan C, 2010). The combination of these two features can be a problem, because in 2008-2013 as many as 87% of the representatives of Generation Y moved to management role (Ernst & Young 2013). Further confusion can cause approach to personal and work time. While Baby Boomers values the possibility to work flexibility (Hewlett, Sherbin, Sumberg, 2009) and treat work as high priority and will stay long hours at work to accomplish tasks,
Generation X wants to have full control over their career path, personal ambitious and work time (Gelbtuch J, Morlan C, 2010). Different approach has as well Generation Y, which is highly motivated but values work-life balance and leisure time (Philips 2010). These three characteristics may affect in misunderstanding and in accomplishing the team tasks that each generation will be willing to do in its preferred style. The problem may also apply to communication style. While the Baby Boomers would like to meet face to face with team members, the other generations attach less attention to the face time. In addition, Generation Y will conduct communication through the hierarchy and status, and Generation X like open and not limited communication (Gelbtuch J, Morlan C, 2010). Some may think that the style of communication using electronic tools, which is preferred by Generation Y is rude and arrogant. Others, however, believe that it is the same as that of other generations, but Yers ask about things that others are afraid to ask and in more indirect way (Economist 2013). Referring to the arguments in Table no. 2 and those given above should be noted that the management of multigenerational team is a challenge. Effort should be made to facilitate the management of such teams. According to a survey by Ernst & Young (2013), attention should be paid to the following tools: team building exercises, generational differences training, cross-generational the networking and fitting the communication styles. Nevertheless, no manager should blindly put people in the frames of generation. Each person is different, and although a good understanding of the perspective of each of them is crucial for the project success, project management should be guided by three simple rules: understanding (it is not easy to change one’s perception, try to understand it), asking (how different team members see the same thing) and showing commitment (effort of working with the differences can be achieved through open dialogue) (Gelbtuch J, Morlan C, 2010).
Conclusion The analysis made it possible to note the gap between different generations , in the process of project management. Three largest labor forces are generations: Baby Boomers , X and Y, as a result of the socialization process developed different skills and approach to work. Baby Boomers are productive employees who value work and communicate face to face. Generation Y values independence , looking for the positive feedback from their superiors and likes to wrestle with the challenges of the job. Generation Y enjoys the opportunity to develop, communicate using electronic tools, and leisure time. The task of a good manager is to have the knowledge and perspectives of each generation differentiation and ensure the most favorable conditions, that will stimulate different generations for the best work. However, Project Manager should not blindly put team members in frames of generation, and only use this frames as an indicator to better understand his/her employees.
References Addeco, 2007, Managing today’s multigenerational workforce [online] http://www.adeccousa.com/Attachments/MultigenWorkforce_ADD.pdf [Accessed 25 October 2013]; Del Campo, R., 2011, Overview of the Generations. [e-book] In: DelCampo, R., Haggerty, L., Honey, M., Knippel, L., 2011, Managing the Multi-generational workforce. Gower, Ch. 1; Available at: http://www.ashgate. com/pdf/SamplePages/Managing-the-Multi-generational-Workforce-DelCampo-Ch1.pdf [Accessed 25 October 2013] Ernst & Young, 2013, Younger managers rise in the ranks: survey quantifies management shift and reveals challenges, preferred workplace perks, and perceived generational strengths and weaknesses, Ernst & Young, [online] Available at: http://www.ey.com/Publication/vwLUAssets/EY-Survey_shows_younger_managers_rising_in_the_ranks/$FILE/Executive-Summary-Generations-Research.pdf [Accessed 23 October 2013] Gelbtuch J, Morlan C, 2010, Multigenerational Teams and Their Impact in Project Management,[online] Project Management Institute, http://www.pmi.org/eNews/Post/2010_04-23/Multi-gen-Teams-And-Impact-inPM.html, [Accessed 25 October 2013] Gipson, J., Greenwood, R., Murphy, E., 2009, Generational Differences In The Workplace: Personal Values, Behaviors, And Popular Beliefs [pdf] Journal of Diversity Management, Volume 4, Number 3, Available at: http://www.cluteonline.com/journals/index.php/JDM/article/view/4959/5051 [Accessed 3 November 2013] Hewlett, S., Sherbin, L., Sumberg, K., 2009, How Gen Y & Boomers Will Reshape Your Agenda, Harvard Business Review [online] http://blog.plus-hr.net/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/How-Gen-Y-Boomers-Will-Reshape-Your-Agenda-Hewlett-Sherbin-and-Sumberg.pdf [Accessed 3 November 2013]; Johnson L., Johnson M., 2010, Generations, Inc.: From Boomers to Linksters—Managing the Friction Between Generations at Work, [e-book] New York: AMACOM, Available through: SAFARI Business Books www. safaribooksonline.com [Accessed 20 October 2013]; Philips, D., 2010, Engaging a Multi-generational Workforce – A Strategic Framework for Success [online] International Journal of Facility Management, Vol 1, No 1 http://ijfm.net/index.php/ijfm/article/viewArticle/13/24; The Economist, 2013, Winning the generation game [online] http://www.economist.com/news/business/21586831-businesses-are-worrying-about-how-manage-different-age-groups-widely-different [Accessed 21 October 2013]; Zemke, R., Raines, C., Filipczak, B., 1999, Generations at Work : Managing the Clash of Veterans, Boomers, Xers, and Nexters in Your Workplace[e-book] New York : AMACOM Available through: eBook Collection (EBSCOhost) www. web.ebscohost.com [Accessed 21 October 2013];
NEW CHALLENGES AND KEY SUCCESS FACTORS FOR PROJECT MANAGEMENT
Anais BALCOU ESC RENNES SCHOOL OF BUSINESS
Abstract The main purpose of this study is to highlight the key success factors of project management and examine the relationships between the new challenges facing companies due to globalization and the way they have to adapt their way of managing projects due to those shifts. This study also aims how managers and the whole organization structure play a huge role in the project management process and decisions and how they can strongly influence the outcomes. Despite the increasing use of project management within organizations, an attendant poor rate of success among these projects has been observed. To face those problems, companies and more accurately managers need to understand the key factors of success to lead projects and reach success. Furthermore, they also need to understand the new challenges of managing projects in order to build a more suitable and a stronger strategy adapted to the internal and external environment.
Key words: Project management, success/failure factors, project success, organizational structure and culture, project manager JEL Classification: F23, L22, M14
Due to globalization, flexibilization and digitalization, companies have drastically changed their way of doing business and measure how essential it is to operate in inter-organizational and transnational cooperation projects (Schilder, C., et al, 2011). In fact, the liberalization of trade, the expansion of competition and the innovation regarding the information and communication technology (ICT) have marked the beginning of new challenges for managers, making them changing their way to understand and lead systems and organizations.
Because companies need to be more global and thus work in cross-cultural team for international stakeholders, the outcomes of project management resulted by international business cooperation henceforth not only on managerial, technical and economical aspects but also on the human apprehension and comprehension (Tone, K.; Skitmore, M.; Wrong, J., 2009). Managers have highlighted the importance of knowing about others in order to better predict their behavior and thus respond to new market challenges as fast as possible (Honeycutt et al., 1983). The ability to fit with cultural diversity within a project team is becoming a major aspect of project management but there are also many others that are not least. Despite the increase of tools and techniques to manage projects, many of them still fail in dealing with uncertainty. They also fail because of a lack of time, cost and expectations targets (Gray & Larson, 2003). As a consequence, American researchers have determined that over 75% of all business transformation projects fail, and that only 16% of U.S. information technology (IT) projects are completed in terms of time and budget (Collyer, 2000; Ives, 2005; Peled, 2000). Likewise, others Canadian researchers have denoted that new U.S consumer products failed 95% of the time and about 40% of new industrial products launched are also running out few time after (Belassi et al, 2007; Clancy & Stone, 2005; Stevens & Burley, 2003). For this purpose, the role of project manager and project team is becoming more and more critical in the success of the project. Regarding all those aspects, we are in measure to ask what are the new challenges and keys factors for a successful project management? In order to make the subject more explicit about the new challenges facing companies regarding the project implementation and management, we will divide the research paper into two parts. First of all, we will study the micro social structure of the company with the project manager skills and competencies and the importance of the team building. Then we will discuss about the macro social structure including the organization structure and culture that plays a relevant part in the success of project. In viewing the declining rate of project management success, it becomes major to explain why this happen and how an organization in its whole can better fit with its objectives and reach success.
Project Manager and team members skills and competencies:the micro social structure
The question that comes up is how a project manager can effectively work and influence a multicultural project team and at the same time being attentive to the diversity and creating the structure required for success? (Butler Jr., 1973). He will also need to deal with internal and external conflict management.
For managers who work in multinational companies or even in companies that have some international stakeholders, there is one challenge that necessary comes up: managing cultural diversity effectively. With all the world shifts and the new way of consuming products and services, companies have been forced to change their strategies which have impacted the way of managing the organizations and systems. To better fit with the needs, contemporary leaders or managers need to create a new type of management in order to know more about others and thus to be capable to anticipate and react quickly to market changes (Honeycutt et al., 1983). Besides, a study has emphasized that about 88% of projects managers spend more than half of their working time interacting with others (Piyush, M, Dangayach, G, & Mittal, M 2011). The cultural differences play a huge role in our working life and the cultural difference could be synonymous of diversity but also can highlight some differences in communication manners leading to some misinterpretations, miscommunications and suspiciousness among employees in a cooperative project. Whether the team is national or multinational, the manager needs to well-understand each other in order to reach project management success (Schilcher, C, Poth, A, Sauer, S, et Al, 2011). To develop his skills and competencies, project manager primarily needs to have an ideal level of education and training through specific diplomas and certifications related to the industry he works on. Then, the work experience will also have a strong impact in its way of managing and in the credibility he has regarding his colleagues (Zimmerer; Yasin, 1998). It has been proved by researchers that project effectiveness in an organization requires not only certain abilities such as the leadership but also technical competencies that permit to develop and display abilities to manage and lead a group (Hyväri, 2000; Zimmerer & Yasin, 1998).
Another aspect of the project manager skills and competencies are his abilities i.e. his personal “know how” to reach success in the projects he leads. One of the most important ones are the effective leadership, his ability of efficient management of resources and his ability to coordinate (Hyväri, I.,2006). Leadership is really important in terms of management skills because the project manager will have to lead his subordinates meaning that he will facilitate workers to achieve projects goals successfully in terms of time, costs and resources (Piyush, M, Dangayach, G, & Mittal, M 2011). Delegating authority, co-coordinating, showing commitment and competence are also abilities that permit to build the strong position and allow him to well-conduct the project (Tone, K.,Skitmore, M., Wong, J., 2009). Others points that the project manager should be able to do are: influencing its team meaning that he should communicate the image of the project and constantly inform them. He also needs to delegate authority for certain tasks and he obviously need to negotiate in order to better prepare the work, plan all the potential question of his team in advance, build a good argumentation and distribute resources according to the workforce available, the different priorities, the procedures and the costs.(Belassi, W, kondra, A, & Tukel, O 2007). He really has for role to motivate his team.
Project manager needs to promote effective knowledge management in order to optimize his resources and make the project the more profitable as he can (Ajmal, M, & Koskinen, K 2008).The cohesion, commitment and the morale assessment are part of the project teamsâ€™ shares and help each member to work effectively and thus increase the global performance of the organization (Yazici, H., 2009). The role of the manager is to make it easier and open the communication in order to better know each other and create synergy effect because of the ease to anticipate behaviors of each member. (Mishra, P, Dangayach, G, & Mittal, M 2011). In fact, it has been proved that people want more freedom to perform the job which has been given to them (Belasski & Tukel 1996). The project manager has for role to plan and manage tasks in interfacing with users in the organization, general information technology business but also human behavior (Bloom, 1989; Brousseau, 1987; Johnson and Fredian, 1986; Koehler, 1987). One of the most critical other point that project manager needs to have is the sense of communication. Some researchers have showed in their studies that communication in project team has been found as most critical success factor in project based enterprises (Mishra, P, Dangayach, G, & Mittal, M 2011). This communicative approach is synonymous of motivation firstly. In fact, the ability to motivate was ranked at sixth position in some research study which means that practically fully people involved in projects are taken care and the chances of less motivation are rare (Hyvari, 2006, Belasski & Tukel, 1996). The manager should facilitate effective cohesion, smooth-functioning and high-performance teamwork to help people improving their performance, expand their competencies and obtain personal development opportunities. Manager needs to foster competitive capabilities and an aggressive orientation toward exceeding competitorâ€™s performance. He also has the role of motivating and inspires individuals in order to make them proactive and to work rigorously (Yazici, H 2009). Also, the emotional intelligence marks its importance because it concerns the human issues that as we have shown have a strong impact on the success of a project. The third part of the project managerâ€™s skills and competencies is the attitudes he uses to communicate and manage his team. In fact, some researchers have developed models emphasizing the different traits of managers. For example, the Big 5 (The Five Factor Model of Personality) has been based on the idea that personality can be described and measured by five main dimensions: openness to experience, the extraversion, the agreeableness, the conscientiousness and the neuroticism (Costa & Mc Crae, 1992). This shows that for instance, manager who is open to new experience tends to be more imaginative, curious, creative, adventurous (and thus much risk-taker) and original (that could be also in his way of managing people) ( Friedman & Rosenman, 1974; Rosenman, 1993). This model and the results show that each manager personality can strongly influence the way of managing and the general way of communicate and lead a project. Friedman and Rosenman (1974) have also develop a model that emphasizes particularly one type of personality that best fit with the requierments for a good manager. In fact, the type A behavior pattern is related to a risk-taker (entrepreneurial, investment and managerial), psychological type (intuition, perceiving and extraversion) and attachment style (secure, anxious/ambivalent and avoidant).
Some researchers have demonstrated correlation between stakeholders and project manager. In fact, those studies show that the traits associated with a rebellious dreamer style (meaning a manager that tends to dream and at the same time to be rebel against authority) are negatively correlated with the ability to establish and design new infrastructure projects for future developments (Dvir, D, Sadeh, A, & Malach-Pines, A 2006). For all those reasons, managers need to gather a set of skills and competencies to well understand their teams and lead as better as they can projects to be successful.
Organizational structure and culture: the macro-social structure For this second part, we will focus on the macro-social aspect in developing the organizational structure. It refers to the hierarchy and different levels of the companies which determines the behaviors, ethics, values, dispositions, attitudes and assumptions shared by the members of the organization which results to the whole company â€˜culture. (Schein, 2000; Wilson, 2000). The first aspect of the organizational culture is the collaborative work environment. In fact, some organizations encourage and reward risk-taking behavior even the project is not fully completed. Nevertheless, others organizations will prefer only reward successful project and punish those who took the risk and failed. This organizational environment clearly discourages to take risk and is not attractive at all for innovative managers. For this reason, project managers should keep attention and stay aware about the organizational structure in order to be in a company that best fits with their way of leading projects. Furthermore, an organizational culture that encourages communication and cooperation are more willing to have team leader effectiveness and team-member satisfaction (Doolen et al., 2003). Some research have emphasized that project success consists of three independent dimensions which are the consumer-based with the customer satisfaction, the financial aspect with the commercial outcome of the company and the technical success with especially the innovation through the research and development (Griffin & Page, 1993). The work environment in a structure is also correlated with better project performance and customer satisfaction. Moreover, organizations that have a strong top management that encourages taking risk and lead huge projects tend to be more commercially successful in developing new products (Belassi, W, Kondra, A, & Tukel, O 2007). In fact, some studies have been exposed that in organizations that are commercially successful in terms of new products development, they foster a culture that encourages people to be more implied in their work and expressed their opinion in a more opened way. For companies whose encourages those projects, most of the time, in implying employees, they make them involved in decision making process and delegate them tools and techniques to achieve goals ( Belassi, W, kondra, A, & Tukel, O 2007). Belassi et Al (2000) found a positive correlation related to relationship between work environment with strong relationships and new product development project success.
Finally, the top management needs to consider project management in a long-term view in order to develop strong relationships with the different users of the project. If the top management shows some resistance to preserve past behaviors and practices when facing new challenges or opportunities, this could be to the detriment of project management development and success (Deal & Kennedy, 1982: 136; Kotter & Heskett, 1992: 24). This resistance behavior can also be associated with legitimacy of authority (Pettigrew, 1979). Nonetheless, for top management who encourages the development of new projects, some of them decide to open a special office dedicated for project management that permits the full integration of work across the functional lines of the organization and it fosters the good work environment and team building (HyvĂ¤ri, I 2006). In 2000, a Standish study (group that focus on understanding failure to help companies succeed) concluded that the primary reason for declining project success rates was the insufficiency collaborative working relationships. This is related to a lack of communication and trust among team members who share responsibility for a project success (Herzog, 2001). A good work environment will encourage the proper communication, commitment of the team and cooperation among team members (Belasski & Tukel, 1996). Trust is also a very important aspect of the work environment because if trust there is, the collaboration between project member will be much more fluent and the atmosphere more relevant to be efficient (Schilcher, C., Poth, A. Sauer, S, Stiefel, K, & Will-Zocholl, M., 2011). In ICT-based (information and communication technology) sector, working environment and cooperation is critical for the companyâ€™s economic success. In this particular industry, the work is globally spread and virtual teams are really common. In this case, trust is even more important because people are far away for each other (Jarvenpaa et al. 1998). The trust in global and spread teams really depends on interpersonal relationships (Mayer et al., 1995; Deutsch, 1958), the individual personality (Frost et al., 1978), cross cultural issues (Farris et al., 1973) and institutional phenomenon (Lewis and Weigert, 1985). Trust is hard to reach; it needs to be built, developed and strengthen. To be built and to be developed, researchers have noted the importance of meeting personally in face-to-face people we are working with (Schilcher, C, Poth, A, Sauer, S, Stiefel, K, & Will-Zocholl, M 2011). In 1997, West developed two fundamental dimensions of organizational culture regarding the creation of knowledge. The two points that he developed are the greater flexibility vs control and the internal vs external orientation. The first dimension emphasizes the different aspect of the organization structure and the impact that this organization has on the project management. In fact, rigid and more formal organizations will produce more functional efficiency because of a better control characterized by a hierarchical structure and centralized decisions. Nevertheless, this type of structure will have a negative impact on the collaborative and the innovative activities. The second dimension highlights the impact that an external aspect can have indirectly on a project through a culture. It is the case for some religious countries that follow a particular dogma (Ajmal, M, & Koskinen, K 2008). Another important point to make the organization attractive for developing project is the knowledge management and the knowledge transfer. Further, it is not only about transferring knowledge but especially about encouraging and facilitate the creation, the sharing and the utilization of knowledge as a strong companyâ€™ resources and make the project reachable. To effectively transfer knowledge, the
organization must be prepared to accept and adopt the transfer and the use of knowledge (Liikamaa, 2006). It has been proved that firms with change-oriented culture and flexible organization have a higher levels of technology transfer and thus can better improve the management of projects (Gopalakrishnan & Santoro, 2004).
The last point of the organizational structure and culture is the cross-functional communication between team participants: business client senior management, information technology developers and a skilled project manager. Communication problem has been defined as one of the most significant cotemporary challenges facing companies in the construction sector due to its internationalization and the increasingly cultural diversity in terms of stakeholders (Loosemore and Al-Muslmani, 1999). Some researchers have proved in the information and communication sector, technical communication is drastically enhanced in work environment where virtual teams, cross-organizational communication and globalization are part of the organization culture (Starke-Meyerring, Duin, &Palvetzian, 2007; Suchan & Hayzak, 2001). For those type of projects, the positive point of this organization and the cross-cultural communication is that it illustrated not only the current ways of operating in a single organization but also with all the different group of stakeholders for cultural influences. Ajmal, M, & Koskinen, K (2008) have emphasized the fact that this cross organization and communication due to its complexity and diversity highly increase the stakeholderâ€™s participations. Managers, top management, team and stakeholders need to build strong relation through a clear intern and extern communication in order to be effective and for that the company should have a global perspective and be willing to change its communication strategy for appropriate ones (Tone, K., Skitmore, M., Wong, J., 2009). An effective cross-communication between the company and its internal department or with its groups of stakeholders will lead to more knowledge-transfer and resources shared which will positively impact the project and the achievement of goals (Howes and Tah,2003). In order to better anticipate the behavior of stakeholders and thus improve the cross-cultural communication, Hofstede (1960) and Trompenaar (1998) suggested identifying the dimensions that characterize national, business and management cultures. For example, Japanese managers are really clock conscious whereas Samoan practitioners are much more oriented in relationships and time is really flexible (Hall and Hall, 1990).
To still gain market share and reach success in the project they run, companies has been forced to adapt their strategy to the challenge linked to the globalization, flexibilization and digitalization such as the management of the increase numbers of cross-cultural team or the arrival if the new information and communication technologies that have improved the way to manage systems and organizations. A number of key principles for the success of project management and the way companies adapt their
project management strategy to internal and external environment include two dimensions: the micro and the macro social structure. In fact, regarding the micro social structure our studies emphasized the importance of the following points: · The role of the manager and the team members that is one of the most important key factors for leading a successful project management. · The importance of adequate manager’s skills and competencies such as technical competencies and behavior management facilities to understand people, manage them and anticipate their behaviors and reactions. · The huge aspect of management knowledge to optimize resources and make the project more profitable as possible. · The role of the human dimensions in the project management and the different adapted attitudes such as a fluid communication, an open-mindedness and a clear explanation of the objectives Then, we have studied the macro social structure aspect that leads to others criteria of successful project management that are the following: · The organizational culture through a collaborative work environment that is a strong success factors for creativity, risk taking and thus a potential huge impact in the success or the failure of a project. · The support of the top management is also very important and reflect the way manager are free to lead their project · Another strong aspect is the trust in the work environment that defines the level of collaboration and transparency between team members and trust has a impact on the global outcomes of the project. · The cross-functional communication is one the main important points in the macro social structure because it enhance the productivity of virtual teams or cross-cultural ones. The overall study shows that the major way to reach success in project management is to contribute to a better understanding and improvement of the organization in its whole and anticipate the internal and external environment aspect.
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SCRUM PROJECT: A METHOD THAT UNDERMINES THE PROJECT MANAGER ROLE Amy Ibrahima POUYE ESC RENNES SCHOOL OF BUSINESS
Abstract Scrum Project is a method used in agile project management. It consists of dividing the traditional responsibility of the project manager into three main roles such as Product Owner, Scrum Master and Developers (teams). However, the fundamental question that is frequently asked is: do we need a Project Manager in Scrum Project? This question is the main problem statement that will be highlighted along this paper. To tackle at all level this latter, several articles and books have been read in order to see the overall framework of this issue, what people who already have experiences about that think and at the end of the day, to provide people with answers of the questions related to the necessity to have a project manager in Scrum project different from the three responsibilities we already have and who among them plays the role of a project manager. An analysis backed by several articles and books shows two different opinions. While many people agree with the presence of a project manager who will have the “big picture” of the project, other ones claim that he is not needed. Key words: Scrum Project, Product Owner, Scrum Master, Developers, Product Backlog, Spring JEL Classification: D23, M12, M14
Introduction Project Management is a discipline of planning, organizing, leading, controlling and coordinating the Human and material resources along the project life cycle by using appropriate techniques so as to reach specific goals. A project meanwhile is a set of activities with limited resources that could be combined in an optimal way to achieve the objectives in order to meet the needs of the customers. Nowadays, we notice that several companies above all the ones which are specialized in Software Development projects and the big projects that have a real impacts on the customers, are likely to adopt a new way of doing as far as the organization of the human resources, the control processes, the allocation of resources, the requirements of the customers are concerned. This new way of proceeding is better known as the Scrum Project. Many definitions of this concept have been given but we have decided to focus on the definition given by Hirotaka TAKEUCHI and Ikujiro NONAKA in the “New new product development game” (Takeuchi & Nonaka 1986), which defines the Scrum project as “a flexible, holistic product development strategy where a development team works as a unit to reach a common goal.” In this
definition, we notice that a scrum project is an example of the Agile project management methodology which tries to drop the â€œboss pressureâ€? we have in traditional companies where the planning, the leading, the controlling, the decision making process etc are generally concentrated in one person and where the employees are not entirely involved in some key aspects of the work. However, is a scrum project, everything is flexible, there is no strict ways of carrying out the work, the employees are self-organized and the customers are committed in the project. Furthermore, the transition to a scrum project is easier to tell than to do. In so far as the organization of the company and particularly the job assignment is very different from what we are likely to see in a traditional project management. In scrum, the responsibilities of the project manager are divided into three main positions such as a Product Owner, a Scrum Master and the Developers (teams). So, the common questions are: is it necessary to have a project manager in Scrum project? Is it possible to transform the Project Manager into Product Owner or Scrum Master? If so, what is the best position to adopt? Is agile management undermining the Project Manager role? Etc. All these questions need to be deeply analyzed in order to create an environment where the work could be well done respecting the scrum processes. We have decided to point out this topic in so far as, on the one hand, several companies say that they are doing scrum without understanding what it really means or without respecting the processes. More, on the other hand, we notice an important part of employees claiming that the presence of a project manager in scrum project is obviously unnecessary. To figure out all the important points so as to deeply tackle this topic, we have read several chapters and articles in order to know the opinion of people above all those who have already done these kinds of work. Because, according to us it will be relevant for the readers to have opinions of some experts and then be able to know what scrum project consists in, who are the actors, to know how the scrum project is dumping the role of the Project Manager and if it will be necessary to have a Project Manager. Thereby, our work will be divided into four main parts: 1. A general view of the traditional project management; 2. The Scrum project; 3. A comparison between the traditional project manager and the current actors of Scrum Project; 4. Last but not the least, the necessity or not to have a project manager in scrum. The number 3 and the number 4 will be dealt with using a literature review.
GENERAL VIEW OF THE TRADITIONAL PROJECT MANAGEMENT
1.1 Definition of Project Management The Project Management Institute defines project management as the “application of knowledge, skills, tools and techniques to project activities to meet project requirements”. What keep our attention in this definition of project management is that it is a set of activities with different processes to carry out in order to achieve a unique goal.
Figure no. 1: The project management life cycle Source: The Project Management Institute
1.2 Project Manager According to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK; Project Management Institute, 2000), “a Project Manager is the person assigned by the performing organization to achieve the project objectives”. So, he or she is considered as one of the most important assets in a company and the one who plays an important role on all the project life cycle by managing the scope, the time, the cost, the quality, the resources, the communication among people, the people themselves and the risks. Therefore, in traditional project management, it goes without saying that a project manager is needed to carry out or to supervise all these set of activities in order to reach a specific purpose. But, with the transition of several companies to a new model of handling the tasks, which is better known as SCRUM Project, the future of the project manager is undermining. II.
THE SCRUM PROJECT
Definition and involved people Scrum Project is an agile methodology dedicated to the project management. It consists in dividing the project into increments with a sprint which can be more defined as a limited period (no more than one month) by which the team is supposed to deliver an implementable increment of the final product. Furthermore, a new sprint will start once the current one finishes and so on. Ken SCHWABER in his book called agile project management with scrum (Schwaber 2004) holds the view that “scrum is not a prescriptive process; it doesn’t describe what to do in every circumstance. Scrum is used for complex work in which it is impossible to predict everything that occur. Scrum simply offers a framework and set of practices that keep everything visible”. What makes the scrum project particular is that everything is flexible, the teams are self-organized and there is no boss pressure.
Many actors are involved in this process and we choose to focus on them because, all management responsibilities are split among these three main roles particularly: II.1 The Product Owner He is in charge of creating the project’s initial requirements by drawing the product Backlog which is a list of all the requirements given by the customers for the product or the system which has to be developed in the project. Moreover, the product owner is responsible for representing the interests of both the customers and the consumers. By this way, he is responsible for the product backlog’s content, the prioritization of the different elements to know what should be done first. He also makes the more important decisions regarding the project and make sure that the content of the product backlog is understood by everyone and the most valuable things are built and done properly. II.2 The Scrum Master It has been suggested by Ken SCHWABER in his agile project management with scrum book (2004) that: “the Scrum Master (the facilitator) is responsible for the scrum process, for teaching scrum to everyone involved in the project, for implementing scrum so that it fits within an organization’s culture and still delivers the expected benefits”. He is also responsible for ensuring that everyone follows scrum rules and practices. Furthermore, the Scrum Project helps the Product Owner in the establishment of the product backlog, mainly in selecting the most valuable product backlog. He is also likely to support, help the team to transform the backlog they have to carry out, into functionality, into implementable increment. Given that an effective and efficient work has to be done so as to achieve the objectives of the project, a spring review is organized at the end of each spring so as to allow the team to present the work they develop during the spring to the Product Owner and any other stakeholders who want to attend the meeting. It generally lasts four hours and during this, the team is reoriented if needed and then we know what comes next. After the spring review, the Scrum Master holds a spring retrospective meeting which lasts three hours and by which the Scrum Master want to know what goes wrong during the spring, the mistakes and come up with important decisions so as to face that situation. A daily scrum (15minutes maximum) is also organized allowing the team to emphasize on the current tasks, the encountered difficulties and so on. Each member has to answer to three main questions that are the following ones: What have you done since the last Daily Scrum? What are you going to do between now and the next Daily Scrum? What are the encountered difficulties? II.3 The developers (team) The team is responsible for developing the functionalities. They are self-managed, self-organized and cross functional. They are accountable for figuring out how to turn the product backlog into an implementable increment during each iteration (spring). There is no individual accountability for the success of each spring and the entire project. They are collectively responsible for its success or its failure.
Agile Project Management with Scrum
This book is written by Ken SCHWABER in 2004 and it describes the extraordinary difficult process of creating software and gives several case studies in which people are using Scrum so as to find solutions for the complexity of the problems they face and at the same time to perform their work. We have chosen to use this book as an illustration for our problem statement because it underlines also the issue of trying to know if a project manager is needed in a Scrum or not. And if so, who plays the role of the project manager in this environment. As far as he is concerned, the Scrum Master represents the traditional Project Manager in a Scrum. To illustrate this idea, SCHWABER brings some roles that a project manager and a scrum master have in common which are: Tabel no. 1: Comparison between a project manager and a scrum master PROJECT MANAGER
Controlling Bossing Delegating
Facilitating Coaching Being personally responsible Source: SCHWABER 2004
According to SCHWABER, the Scrum Master is likely to do the same job as the Project Manager in a traditional project management. But, in our opinion, it is important to not only focus on these three dimensions in underlining the project manager’s role. This latter goes beyond controlling, bossing and delegating. This trilogy role seems to just point out a manager as a boss, a coach, whereas the person that really could be called as a project manager is the one who initiates the work first, defines the objectives of the project, the final result, organizes the work in term of resource allocation, putting the right person at the right place and last but not the least the person who coordinates the work. Our point of view has also been underlined by Steve HUNTON in his article called “A scrum master is not a project manager by another name”. III.2
“A scrum master is not a project manager by another name”
This article has been written by Steve HUNTON in 2012 and it is about comparing the role of the Scrum Master, the Project Manager and the Product Owner. He takes the stance that a Project Manager should never become a Scrum Master in so far as the latter is not likely to accomplish the entire role of a project manager. The Scrum Master is obviously a new role that is created in a scrum project and he concludes by saying that if we really want to identify a project manager in a Scrum project, it will be more relevant to point out the Product Owner in so far as s/he is responsible for the project itself and makes the final decision. . He also draws our attention to the fact that the scrum master is just a facilitator and a coach; s/he is no longer accountable for the project and the development of the team. If even we find in a
scrum, a scrum master that is making decisions about a product or the service, it means that Scrum is not “properly implemented” and the consequence of that is a conflict in “Who does what”. In our point of view we agree with Steve in several points mainly those related to the differentiation of the role of a scrum master, a project manager and a product owner. A project manager is a leader, a decision maker, a planner, a team and a product/service manager and is responsible for an entire project compared to a scrum master who is just a facilitator that makes sure that the scrum processes are correctly and continuously implemented. This opinion is not accepted by Tatyana YANUSH (2012) in her “implementing Scrum: how does the project manager fit in?” article who argues that everybody is able to play the role of a scrum master. III.3
Implementing Scrum: How does the project manager fit in
This article is contrary to the views held by Steve HUNTON in so far as she comes up with a new trend which argues that, everybody is able to be a good Scrum master if s/he possesses the skills, the qualifications and the competences needed. She gives an example of a project manager who is recognized as someone who respects and trusts her team, someone who is always seeking for motivating the team, letting them do what they think will be better for the success of the project by encouraging them to take initiatives and to ensure that all resources needed to accomplish the work are available. Someone who creates an environment where each member of the team feels comfortable talking with him or her because there is no “boss pressure”. Someone who protects them, communicates with them, finds solutions to their issues and finally, someone who ensures transparency of the project towards the stakeholders. She believes that this kind of project manager is ABLE to play the role of a Scrum Master. Furthermore, she also stresses the need to choose a product owner among the customers even if it is not always easy because they are accustomed to being busy. In this case, it remains convenient to choose a product owner among the current team and by this way; the project manager becomes the good candidate. Not only because s/he was likely to interact with the stakeholders but also there are several tasks that the project manager was likely to do and which are not part of either the scrum master or the product owner’s job description such as responsibility allocation when transitioning to scrum, conducting periodic individual performance reviews, dealing with promotions and salary raises, being the primary interface to higher management and other department like IT, Human Resources, accounting… She also gives proposals like to allow people to play two roles at the same time as Project manager-Product Owner; Project manager-Scrum master and Product owner-Scrum master. In this point, we agree with Tatyana because as she says: “the product owner owns the product, the scrum master owns the process, both are working in order to make sure the client, top management and the team are happy”. So, why it will be not possible to combine both in one person given that it is what a project manager was used to carry out. But, one question is mostly important to highlight: Do we really need to have a Project Manager in Scrum Project? III.4
Succeeding with agile
This article has been written by Mike COHN (2010) and arguments that self-organization no longer means that people are authorized to do whatever they want. In fact, “self-organization does not mean that workers instead of managers engineer an organization design. It does not mean letting people do whatever they want to do. It means that management commits to guiding the evolution of behaviors” (Philip Andersen in the biology of Business). Boundaries and constraints should also be put in place by the top management and even if the team is self-organized, it should comply with those constraints because they are not “free from control”. Therefore, the point of Mike COHEN is one of the main issues that lead us to ask the aforementioned question about the necessity to have a project manager in a scrum or not. We really think that manager, a project manager is needed in a scrum so much so that to ensure that the team aligns with the project objectives, to unleash their capabilities, to motivate them and so on. A similar stance is taken by Vinay AGGARWAL (2009) in the Project Management and responsible for Agile Project involving Amazon Cloud (AWS): Microsoft, with the article called “the role of project managers in agile”. Vinay largely agrees on the necessity to have a Project manager “all in any industry”. III.5
Why the agile project manager is the secret sauce for development projects
This article has been written by Leonardo ABDALA in 2012 and is in line with the reflection of Mike COHEN and AGGARWAL regarding the importance of having a project manager even in Scrum Project. In fact, the main idea driven by ABDALA is that: “the Agile Project Manager is needed in a scrum; s/he did not have to take on specific task assignment during the project”. He believes that the success of the project would probably not possible without a project manager who will be responsible for leading the process with “constant communication and immediate detection of issues”. Moreover, having a project manager is scrum will help to create transparency and at the end of the day, to enable the stakeholders to follow the project on a daily basis. ABDALA, furthermore concurs with the view of HUNTON (2012) regarding some role that a project manager could fulfill in scrum project for instance: “allocating team members, providing mentoring and coaching, coordinating the development of the product backlog with the product owner, developing, monitoring and executing the project’s schedule, cost/budget, cash flow, communication, risk response plans, procurement, holding the meeting, scheduling and facilitating other project meeting, preparing and communicating written and verbal status reports for the team members and stakeholders, arranging daily meeting with the team, morning meeting with the client and checking the backlog, coaching the Scrum master to try to anticipate unknown roadblocks”. As far as we are concerned, the fact of having a project manager who has no specific tasks to carry out will probably create some conflicts. It remembers us the type of conflict highlighted by HUNTON concerning the issue of “who does what” which really needs to be avoided in any kind of work. III.6
Is agile undermining the project manager role
This article has been written by Sachin DHAYGUDE in 2013 and is posted on the Project Management Institute (PMI)’s website. It drives the same theory taken further by Mike COHN, Vinay AGGARWAL and Leonardo ABDALA about the importance of having a project manager in scrum project. DHAYGUDE goes deeper by emphasizing on the ‘work in parallel” that generally occurs in scrum project and where each iteration or spring should follow the same way given by the project management life cycle. In other words, each spring has to be initiated, planned, executed, monitored/controlled and closed. More, in each step, we have to pay attention on time, scope, costs, resources, quality, risk, communication and stakeholders. This “work in parallel” has to be properly done in order to avoid missing deadlines or missing the iteration commitments. Besides, it goes without saying that a representative is chosen in each team but as DHAYGUDE says: “they are not managed the whole project”, so they obviously don’t understand the “entire context” and at the end of the day, they are not able to have a “big picture” of the project. Therefore, three main questions have been pointed out by him: firstly “who takes accountability for the whole project and not just his or her spring”, secondly, “who decides the best course for the project” and finally “who communicates and negotiates the decisions with the other stakeholders”. These three questions keep our attention about the necessity to have a project manager, but at the same time to be able to give a brief answer to the first question by saying: the Product Owner definitely, if we think about what Steve HUNTON had said before. It is not obvious to deal with stakeholders that use agile project management; they are likely to have one project manager dealing with all the companies that they are interested in. So, is it effective and efficient for the stakeholders to talk with several people? Absolutely NOT. Thereby, a project manager is needed to reorientate the work on the right way. In his point of view, it is not effective to undermine the role of the project manager in three different roles such as product owner, scrum master and developers at least for big and complex projects. The better thing to do in this context is to enable the project manager to adapt him/herself by leaving the boss pressure, the “command and control style management”, by providing the teams with all the necessary autonomy regarding the allocation of resources, the organization of the work and at the end of the day, by adopting a “we are all in together attitude” instead of “throat to choke attitude”.
Conclusion The problem statement of the necessity to have a Project Manager in Scrum Project and the person who could play that role among the Product Owner and the Scrum Master is becoming the main topic of several debates around the world. In this paper, we focus on trying to give a big picture of the aforementioned problem statement so as to help people that are confused, to solve it and orientate themselves. The arguments given in this paper are likely to be in contrast because, a claim is noticed in all companies which have decided to transit to Scrum Project which is: “there is no role of Project Manager in Scrum because it is not needed” (“Is agile undermining the project manager role?” by Sachin DHAYGUDE, 2013). In fact, on the one hand, in the overwhelming majority of the cases we have read, the authors answer with a big YES, he is needed. But, on the other hand, the answer is NO; he is not needed because his role is already taken by either, the Product Owner, the
Developers or the Scrum Master. As far as we are concerned, the project manager is obviously needed. If only, in all companies, the employees are dynamic and carry out their job correctly, we probably don’t need to have a person that will ensure that all the work is properly done, but unfortunately that is not the case. Since the work is done in parallel and should lead to come up with an implementable increment that will serve for the whole project, a mistake even if it is small will has bad consequences on the final product or service delivered. By this way, a leader, a decision maker, a planner, a team manager and a person accountable for the entire project as a Project Manager is necessary. As mentioned on the Mountain Goat Software website when they deal with “what is agile project management”, “the responsibilities of a traditional project manager are: to manage scope, cost, quality, personnel, communication, risk, procurement and more”. Thus, even if all these responsibilities are shared among the product owner, the scrum master and the developers, none of them has a big picture of the whole project, they just do what they are supposed to do and let the other do what they have to do, which is definitely not effective for the success of a project.
References Hirotaka TAKEUCHI and Ikujiro NONAKA, 1986, “The New New Product Development Game”, HBR.org January 1986, available at: http://hbr.org/1986/01/the-new-new-product-development-game/ar/1 The Project Management Institute (n.d.), “What is Project Management?”, available at: www.pmi.org/About-Us/About-Us-What-is-Project-Management.aspx Project Management Institute, 2000, Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK), available at: http://www.cs.bilkent.edu.tr/~cagatay/cs413/PMBOK.pdf Sachin DHAYGUDE, 2013, “is agile undermining the project manager role?” available at: http://www.projectmanagement.com/articles/280537/Is-Agile-Undermining-the-Project-Manager-Role-
Ken SCHWABER, 2004, “agile project management with Scrum”, available at: http://books.google.fr/books?hl=fr&lr=&id=dJlqJfm8FM4C&oi=fnd&pg=PR2&dq=ken+schwaber+agile+project+management+with+scrum&ots=HTWe4LvAlT&sig=MSkjhzxViBxxtX8cq5zeecy4ofA#v=onepage&q=ken%20schwaber%20agile%20project%20management%20with%20scrum&f=false
Mike COHN, 2012, “what is agile project management”, available at: http://www.mountaingoatsoftware.com/agile/agile-project-management
Mike COHN, 2010, “succeeding with agile”, available at: http://www.mountaingoatsoftware.com/books/succeeding-with-agile-software-development-using-scrum
Vinay AGGRAWAL, 2009, “the role of project managers in agile”, available at: http://www.infoq.com/articles/project-manager-role
Leonardo ABDALA, 2012, “why agile project manager is the secret sauce for development projects”, available at: http://www.infoq.com/articles/agile-project-manager-role
Tatyana YANUSH, 2012, “implementing scrum: how does the project manager fit in”, available at: http://www.scrumalliance.org/community/articles/2012/january/implementing-scrum-how-does-the-project-manager-fi
Steve HUNTON, 2012, “a scrum master is not a project manager by another name”, available at: http://www.scrumalliance.org/community/articles/2012/august/a-scrum-master-is-not-a-project-manager-by-another
Dan RAWSTHORNE, 2009, “who is the project manager in scrum?”, available at: http://drdansplace.com/2009/10/who-is-the-project-manager-in-scrum/
Scrum, available at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scrum_(software_development)
HOW TO MANAGE COMMUNICATION IN PROJECT MANAGEMENT? Maeva BIGOT ESC RENNES SCHOOL OF BUSINESS
Abstract The ability to manage communication is crucial in project management. This field could be either a key success factor if stakeholders use it properly or an element slowing the project down or threaten it if there are some communication barriers. Indeed communication issues are costly. In consequence the project leader needs to master communication knowledge and to create an effective communication plan because this field is about giving the right piece of information to the right person at the right time. Misunderstanding may appear easily if the project team has poor communication skills or if there are communication barriers. The encoder/ decoder model helps realizing that the formulation and understanding of the message are subject to subjectivity because the sender and the receiver often donâ€™t use the exact same language. This is typically true in transversal and multicultural projects. Team building may be used to help the project team members knowing each other better and adapt their way of communicating to their colleagues. It is also crucial to use the appropriate communication tools according to the type of project managed. Finally feedback is very important to communicate in project management as it may help checking if the message is understood. Key words: project management, communication barriers, feedback, communication systems model, face-to-face communication JEL Classification: M14, M54
Introduction The diversity of stakeholders and the quantity of information exchanged in project management are making communication a challenge but still a key success factor for the project. Nevertheless the importance of this topic is regularly underestimated and often leads companies to lose time and money. Therefore we will try to identify how to communicate efficiently in project management. In consequence it will be crucial to analyze the specificities of communication in project management and understand why communication is an essential field to master in this type of task. Finally it will be important to identify communication barriers before presenting solutions to avoid them and assure a good communication environment. Why is communication important in project management? Communication is crucial for project management and represents a key success factor for every project. Delivering the good message to the good people favors performance and time-saving, which represent two significant aspects of the field. Communication appears like an investment for the project manager and the project sponsor. Communicating costs money but when there is poor communication or no communication at all, consequence on the
project will be more serious. The project may become even more costly because a lack of information sharing might lead to do tasks twice or make the wrong choices. Indeed taking the best decision can only be possible if the person has every related data in mind. Dennis Lock (2013) also indicates that the project will advance slowly in case of poor communication on the project. This will also be expensive knowing that the project team will work longer on the topic. Then while they work on the project they will not be able to do their regular tasks, if the project is added to their regular job. The equipment used to carry out the project will be lent longer. For example constructing a building requires to lend some special material like trucks or cranes. These are very expensive. If the project is slowed down it risks to threaten the balance in the budget. As the project manager is responsible for the project achievement and coordination, he/she is the one who will work on designing the communication plan at the beginning of the project. He/she will also have the possibility to change it according to stakeholdersâ€™ feedback he/she might get during the project. J.R. Meredith and S.J. Mantel (2012) argue that he/she must have strong communication skills such as listening, persuading, expressing a clear message which will be useful during the whole project. Project management requires multi-type communication. The project manager and his/her team have to exchange messages with multiple interlocutors from the top management to clients, not forgetting other team members. Sharlett Gillard and Jane Johansen (2003) also name contractors, vendors and special interest groups as stakeholders potentially subject to information exchange. In consequence a project manager have to be able to adapt his/her way of interacting with the person he/she is communicating with, respecting his/her position in the hierarchy and understanding his/her expectations.
Figure no. 1: Information flow in a project Source: Pop A-M. (2012). 2nd Report of Doctoral theses Contributions towards communication management in projects, Sibiu, Romania, November, 2012.
Internal communication within the project team must be efficient to assure the project advancement. J.R. Meredith and S.J. Mantel (2012) pretend that it is useful to deal with conflicts which could occur in the team. Nevertheless internal communication has others advantages for a project team. Having important information from his/her team will firstly enable the team leader to make the right decisions. He needs feedback
from his/her team to adapt his/her management and his/her priorities to the reported situation. Having a clear message from his/her team will make him/her save precious time. If a difficulty is quickly known, it will be easier for the project leader to fix it. On the contrary, if communication is less efficient, the situation and the potential misunderstanding could have time to grow and to become harder to solve. Secondly, the project manager also needs to give relevant pieces of information to his/her team. The key objectives of downward internal communication are letting know to each team member his/her task, responsibility and status in the hierarchy (Dennis Lock, 2013). This will enhance the team’s motivation because the team members will see precisely how they contribute to the project. They will understand that their tasks are essential for the project’s carrying out. Dennis Lock (2013) also indicates that some sensitive information needs to be retained, when the project deals with secret activities from a government for example. We can also name the duty of information retention of innovative companies like Apple or Samsung, which want to hide their future products and strategies. Working on a project for this kind of companies requires a secure system to preserve secret information representing their competitive advantage. This can leads us to conclude that communication seriously needs to be managed in project management. The goal here is not to exchange the more information possible. We often discuss the issue of lack of information but giving too much information will not be a better solution. The receiver will be lost and lose time as well, or even worse, the project could be threatened by disclosing secret information as we saw before. We can finally conclude that communication is about giving the right piece of information to the right person at the right time. The Project Management Book of Knowledge (PMBOK) from the Project Management Institute illustrates this idea. A communication plan would be required and involves: “Determining the information and communications needs of the stakeholders: who needs what information, when will they need it, and how will it be given to them”. After having analyzing the crucial role of communication in project management, it seems important to identify communication barriers in order to avoid them. Barriers to effective communication in project management Communication barriers in project management can firstly be illustrated by a difference between the message sent and the message received. The message sender might first change the original idea by expressing it orally. He encodes the message. The tone, rhythm and words used are subjective and might modify the message the sender wanted to tell. After the message had been expressed, the message is once again subject to interpretation: the receiver one. So decoding represents another risk to change the original idea. Dennis Lock (2013) explains that effective communication is possible with this encoder/decoder model as long as the sender and the receiver share the same codes. Nevertheless we may qualify this idea by insisting on the fact that two people sharing exactly the same language and codes are very rare. This would only be possible if people know each other for a long time. Sharlett Gillard and Jane Johansen (2003) contradict this idea and argue that each person is influenced by his/her background, environment and feelings during communication. Given the fact that our environment and feelings are constantly changing and that our background is unique, it seems impossible to share the same codes with another person. We have the possibility to reduce the gap between our different codes. Interpretation during the communication process can be reduced by using clear and precise words in order to reduce the part of uncertainty. We may also observe our interlocutor to learn his/
her language and be able to understand it. We can then adapt our way to communicate to our interlocutor’s codes in order to be more understandable.
Figure no. 2: Communication model Source: Kerzner, H., (2001). Project management: A systems approach to planning, scheduling, and controlling (7th ed.). New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Applying the encoder/decoder theory to project management may let us find specific communication barriers to project management. The variety of stakeholders involved constitutes the first cause for communication difficulty because the team project has to adapt its codes and language to a lot of different actors. Harold Kerzner (2001) identifies potential communication problems between numerous actors: among team members, between the project leaders and team members, between the project team and the top management, between project leaders and the client. For example, communication issues may rise between project leaders and the customer if each part doesn’t explain clearly its own goals and constraints. As we saw before there are often at least two companies working on a project: the client and the executor. The difference of corporate culture may represent a gap between each team’s language and codes. The two companies may have differences regarding power distance for example. If a project manager feels too comfortable when he/she presents the project to the client company’s top management, this could bother them and bring them doubts about the project’s carrying out. A multicultural project team may also encounter communication difficulties due to a difference of cultural backgrounds. Gesture and posture can have different meanings depending on the country of origin. For the same opinion about a project, the Japanese and the French will not have the same reaction. The Japanese will be less direct than the French to express their feelings. So it is very important to know the cultural background of all stakeholders. Transversal teams may also encounter this type of difficulties. For example if a technician communicates with a manager, he/she may not mention some crucial details for the project, assuming that the manager already knows it. But what is obvious for someone is not always obvious for everyone. So it is very important to talk about all important points and to make sure our interlocutor has understood. Sharlett Gillard and Jane Johansen (2003) describe other barriers to good communication like „psychological distractions such as nervousness or tension, emotional distractions such as extreme happiness or sadness, and physiological distractions such as fatigue or illness”. This means that not only effective communication depends on each person’s background but it also varies for the same person any time according to his/ her state of mind.
Solutions to communicate efficiently in project management As we saw previously, an effective communication is crucial in project management. To avoid understanding problems, Anita Mehta (2002) recommends favoring face-to-face communication, almost at the beginning of the project. This method should be applied within the project team but also with the client to make sure that the aim of the project is clearly identified and the same for every stakeholder involved. Faceto-face communication gives the possibility to get more information by looking at non-verbal communication like gesture, posture or facial expression. A long silence may also be a piece of evidence that the client has still interrogations about the project development. Moreover, face-to-face communication enables to have an interactive exchange of information. In this case feedback is very quick. This may help the client to know if the team project has understood its expectations for example. Face-to-face communication should be used anyway regularly by stakeholders, with meetings for example, to let everyone involved have a complete view about the project advancement. Another important step at the beginning of the project would be to establish some communication rules. The aim of the process is to avoid a lack of communication as well as giving too much information which will lose time. The project manger is responsible for this. He/she fixes meetings frequency and gives communication tools. He/she has also to ask key stakeholders when and how they wish to get information about the project. What’s more, a solution to preserve effective communication within the project team would be to use team building according to Anita Mehta (2002). This method will help team members to know each other and to learn about the way their colleagues express themselves. Interpretation will be less important if people know each other better. We can deduce that team building will help team members to communicate effectively if we consider the encoder/decoder model. Team building lets team members know each other better but also get on well. They will have more chances to appreciate each other because they share a common experience and good memories. This is another important point for communication according to Harold Kerzner (2001). He pretends that communication is more effective when team members share the same point of view. Listening is also a basic rule to enhance a project team communication. This will enable the team to avoid losing precious information. This solution is linked with another basic rule which is giving as much feedback as possible. This is a major element of communication and enables the message sender to make sure the receiver has understood the message well and that they share the same codes and a common language. The receiver may also reformulate the message he/she understood to help the sender making sure the message is clearly understood. Moreover, when some team members have different cultures, it is important to pay attention to cultural differences (Anita Mehta, 2002). Project managers have to notice body language differences from one culture to another to improve their understanding. They also have to be aware of culture differences concerning for example chonometrics and proxemics – respectively time and distance management. I have personally experienced this kind of difficulty during a project. One colleague had not the same way to manage time. She was polychronic whereas I was monochronic. Our project had been slowed down because she had not the habit to respect deadlines. We had to talk about it to understand each other better and to organize ourselves in consequence. To avoid this kind of difficulty, the team member may use a precise vocabulary to avoid any confusion. For example, it will be clearer to set a deadline on “Monday 12th” than on “next week” or “next Monday”.
When I worked in project management during my internship, I also experienced that creating a communication system using symbols can be efficient and save time to project managers. For instance, the team may create a logo for the project. In this way every stakeholder will recognize the documents about the project easily. The logo can also give information about the project spirit. A color system is a second tool which could be implemented to let stakeholders identify the documents concerning the project. A project can have different sizes and include numerous stakeholders. Sometimes several companies are involved in the project, a client and a supplier. Several tools are used to help project teams coordinating the project and favor information circulation. J.R. Meredith and S.J. Mantel (2012) indicate that the project team may create an information network to exchange new ideas, news about the project and inform stakeholders about environment evolutions. This tool may save time to all people involved in the project and make their work more effective. Stakeholders also need to know the role of each person participating to the assignment, to be able to contact quickly the best person to ask a question or to give a relevant information for their task. Indeed, some ideas don’t require to be known by all the stakeholders. A second type of tool may be used in this case, like organization charts, describing each person’s function in the company, or project matrix organization, indicating each person’s role for the project (Dennis Lock, 2013). J.R. Meredith and S.J. Mantel (2012) argue that it is crucial to get the top management support in order to have a strong message. The project will be developed faster if stakeholders know that the top management feels concerned about it. Conclusion Finally, an efficient communication in project management may save both time and money. In consequence it must be prepared. The project leader has an important responsibility in this process because he/ she is in charge of coordinating the project and establishing communication rules at the beginning. Firstly the project team has to know well each stakeholder’s background to know their way of communicating and adapt its own way of interacting in consequence. It also seems essential to provide adapted tools to regulate information between the different groups involved in the project. But not all stakeholders have to access to all project information. This rule may avoid time and money loss. Secondly, face-to-face communication has to be regularly used in order to get feedback and to make sure that every stakeholder has the same vision about the project. This is very important when stakeholders have different corporate cultures, organizational cultures or know-how. Lastly communication flow has to be monitored. The project team has also to retain secret information. Communication is about giving the right piece of information to the right person at the right time.
References Binder, J. (2007) Global Project Management Communication, Collaboration and Management Across Borders. Aldershot: Gower Publishing. Bondale, K. (2010). The Power of Effective Communication in Project Portfolio Management. Available at: http://info.eclipseppm.com/blog/bid/112367/The-Power-of-Effective-Communication-in-Project-Portfolio-Management Gillard, S. and Johansen J. (2003). Project management communication: a systems approach. School of Business, University of Southern Indiana, Evansville, IN, USA Kerzner, H., (2001). Project management: A systems approach to planning, scheduling, and controlling (7th ed.). New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Lock, D. (2013). Project Management. (10th edition) . [S.l.]: Gower Mehta, A. (2002). Communication in Project Management. Meredith, J.R. and Mantel, S.J. (2012). Project Management : A Managerial Approach. Singapore : John Wiley & Sons Pop, A.M. (2012). 2-th Report of Doctoral theses Contributions towards communication management in projects, Sibiu, Romania, November, 2012.
Pop, A.M. and Dumitrascu, D.D. (2013). The measurement and evaluation of the internal communication process in project management, Available at: http://steconomiceuoradea.ro/anale/volume/2013/n1/166.pdf Project Management Institute. (2013). 3 Must-Have Communications Skills. Available at http://www.pmi.org/ Professional-Development/Career-Central/3-Must-Have-Communications-Skills.aspx Ramsing, L. (2009). Project communication in a strategic internal perspective. Centre for Corporate Communication, Aarhus School of Business, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark
The Relation between Project Management and Business Corporate Social Responsibility
ESC RENNES SCHOOL OF BUSINESS
Abstract Many researches have been conducted on Corporate Social Responsibility and today it is a management concept that companies include more and more in their projects. The duty of project management will be to provide the best conditions to apply CSR in projects. CSR mainly enhances reputation, image, credibility and integrity. However, studies show that real-life manager holds a traditional view of CSR preventing its full development within projects. Governments, organisations, CEOs and managers should promote CSR in companies to make it applicable and measurable at a project management level. The purpose of this article is to highlight the increasing role of Corporate Social Responsibility in project management and how it is applied in real-life manager. This paper has used the Triple-Bottom-Line model (Elkington’s 1998) and the stakeholder approach to CSR as a basis to explain the CSR management concept and to draw some conclusions about CSR benefits for project management. The article analyse also what is the real-life manager use of CSR in project management. We will conclude this paper with some advice of examples to foster the use of CSR at project management level.
Main findings: Stakeholders concern about Corporate Social Responsibility has become an important part of project management. Awareness and application of corporate social responsibilities lead to extension and improvement of partnerships in and between companies. The extents to which CSR model can be applied in project management depend on the environment of the project organization. Considering internal and external stakeholder bring higher competitiveness to the company. The relatively traditional view of firm by manager cannot foster the introduction of CSR in companies and companies project. Government, organisations and CEO should foster the use of CSR at a corporate level to spread it out in project management.
Keywords: project management, Corporate Social Responsibilities (CSR), stakeholder groups, business in society
JEL Classifications: D70, M14
42% of how people feel about a company is based on their perceptions’ of the firm’s corporate social responsibilities (Reputation Institute, 2013). This article explains why nowadays it is so important to include Corporate Social Responsibility in companies Project Management. “Project Management is the planning, organizing, directing and controlling of company resources for a relatively shortterm objective that has been established to complete specific goals and objectives.” (Kezner, 2013). The objective of project management is to develop a strategy and tools that would permit the project to benefit from the CSR strategy. According to the Green Paper developed by the European Commission in 2001, Corporate Social Responsibility (CRS) is “a concept whereby companies
integrate social and environmental concerns in their business operations and in their interaction with their stakeholders on a voluntary basis” (Commission of the European Communities, 2001, P.6). Stakeholders in a project are favourably or unfavourably impacted by a project. They are also more or less decision makers and have different expectation of a project. Projects’ stakeholders are increasingly asking information about companies’ Corporate Social Responsibility activities aside from financial outcomes. Customers become more vocal in demands for origins of products and services (who made them, how and what products contain). Employees want to apply in companies caring about environment and feeling responsible toward society. Investors are more and more sensitive to good corporate governance. And governments and civil society are requesting report on environmental and social performance. Considering the evolution of stakeholders concerns Corporate Social Responsibility has become an important management concept of project management. The objective of this paper is to examine to what extent CSR strategy is applied in real-life manager. More specially, starting with the Triple-Bottom-Line model and the stakeholder approach to CSR, this paper provides an analysis of the CSR concept. Trough some empirical studies and governments contribution we will present the main drivers, the different stakeholder interests in CSR and CSR benefits for project management. However, models are “representations of systems that attempt to explain or predict the behaviour of components of interest” (Rouse and Putterill, 2003, pp.791-792). The contribution of this paper is also to raise the real-life manager view of CSR. Before entering the analysis, the article provides a short perspective on what could be done to foster CSR strategy in project management and a description of some best practises used by company to foster it.
Principles of Corporate Social Responsibility
Over the years, many CSR models have been developed to explain the role and responsibilities of CSR. More precisely, some researches had focused on models illustrating businesses’ responsibilities toward society. One of the most popular one is the Triple-Bottom-Line by Elkington (1998). It claims that sustainable development in a company can only be realized through simultaneous implementation of economic, ecological and social aims. Economic responsibilities (profit) mean that economics operation of current generation should not impact negatively the existence of following generations. Ecological responsibilities (planet) lead business to use natural resources in the measure it can be regenerated. And social responsibilities aim at preventing conflict and limiting social tensions and if any, helping to solve them in a calm and civil way. This model sustains that awareness and application of corporate social responsibilities lead to extension and improvement of actual partnership and to new partnership in and between companies. This is a very important part of project management that takes over coordination between stakeholders. In project organisation, development of standards in CSR leads companies and project partners to communicate and extent these standards to other companies and countries. For instance, “The UN Global Compact is a strategic policy initiative for businesses that are committed to aligning their operations and strategies with ten universally accepted principles in the areas of human rights, labor, environment and anti-corruption. By doing so, business, as a primary driver of globalization, can help ensure that markets, commerce, technology and finance advance in ways that benefit economies and societies everywhere.” (UN Global Compact, 2004). The stakeholder approach to CSR considers that managers have relationships with many stakeholders (suppliers, customers, local communities…). According to Freeman et al. (2004:365) “Stakeholder theory claims that whatever the ultimate aim of the corporation or other form of business activity, managers and entrepreneurs must take into account the legitimate interests of those groups and individuals who can affect (or be affected by) their activities (…)”. However, there are some controversies about CSR. For example, Freeman & Liedtka (1991) claim that CSR is a concept that failed because it is a barrier to communication between stakeholders and for that reason should be dropped. These models reflects the reality by giving a high importance to stakeholders because companies have more and more stakeholders involved in projects such as media and public authorities.
CSR drivers encouraging CSR in projects
In any project, the organization settles a team of stakeholder with different cultures, coming from different companies with different value to achieve a goal. The extent to which CSR model can be applied in project management depend on the environment of the project organization: employees, organization of the home base companies of the project members, technological progress, social values, competitor environment, suppliers and contractors policy, politics and lobbies in the region and the relation of customers to CSR. However, project players are more and more willing to include CSR as a task of the project since we have identified it could be of interest in reaching their goals. For example, the Green Book of the EU has mentioned some key drivers. There are some
new concerns and expectations from citizens, consumers, public authorities and investors in the context of globalization and largescale industrial change. Firstly, social criteria are increasingly influencing the investment decisions of individuals and institutions as consumers and investors have increased concerns about the damage caused by economic activity to the environment. Moreover transparency of business activities brought by media, plus modern information and communication technologies cannot hide misconduct. Finally, employeesâ€™ misconducts can lead to bad consequences for the project and beyond. Considering stakeholders in a project is key for the project success.
Considering internal and external stakeholder for the project success
At a level project it is crucial to focus on stakeholders interested in the running project. Responsible action of each part of a project brings cooperation, mutual benefit and trust among the project leading to a competitive position on the market. Corporate social responsibility focuses on the internal and external different stakeholder for project success. On the internal dimension of social responsibility, projects should focus on employees. The target of project management is to recruit and keep qualified workers. To reach this goal a project management allow empowerment, learning, balanced between work and life or profit and capital shareholding. Moreover, project management takes action to promote health of the employees, to qualify them and to give the more responsibilities. Ecological responsibilities are positive for projects as it reduces costs through energy and waste reduction in the value chain. As mentioned earlier, companies follow national and international standards for which they are often audited. It reinforces their competitiveness. On the external dimension, business corporate social responsibility affects local communities by being implanted in the region, giving jobs, wages and taxes. Project management whose impact on the local community is shorter than at companyâ€™s level should not disregard the effect of its activities. All stakeholders who find an interest in the project will gain in competitiveness by bringing a good image to the project. Implying CSR model to project partners (alliance, joint ventureâ€Ś) foster fair prices, good quality and supply. Furthermore, project management is responsible for working condition of suppliers. Another active stakeholder is the customer; project management specially acting in services should develop long-term alignment and loyalty to build up trust among customers. To finish on the external dimension customer group and non-governmental organisation are getting increasingly powerful regarding human right, working condition within a company and especially within suppliers and sub-contractors. Project management should include these dimensions in the project and communicate to stakeholder on it is essential to bring high benefits.
CSR benefits for project management
Even though advantages from CSR in project management are difficult to measure, benefits such as integrity, credibility or reputation are getting more and more important (Bassen et al. 2005). Investment in CSR will increase the trust and reputation of the different stakeholder categories in the project and project management. Moreover, as customers are demanding ethical goods and services, the investment will lead to enhance the image and to a better market positioning. Then, project management could save cost by reducing natural resources consumption. Plus socially responsible project can be rewarded fiscally, economically and administratively. Communication on CSR activities help project management finding new financial resources such as ethical, environment and sustainability oriented funds. Finally, employees acting socially are more motivated and satisfied of being part of the project. It brings them some new competences as well in the project development. The benefits of CSR as a management concept of project management seem obvious. However studies show that CSR is not always well perceived and is still seen in a traditional manner.
Real-life managers still have a narrow view of a firm’s social responsibility
To what extent, CSR models and practises have been successful to change managers’ mind-sets? Firstly many business literatures claim that manager does not change the way they manage as long as it works (Hambrick et al. 1993, Pedersen 2009). By being changes reluctant, managers will not be willing to mainstream CSR. Secondly, Perderson (2011) showed that in real-life, managers hold a traditional view of the firm’s social responsibility based. Project managers’ goals are to take care of workers and make the products/services the customer want in an eco-friendly manner. For example, project managers will give high importance to customer and employees but very low importance to secondary stakeholders such as local communities and NGOs. The vision differs from the stakeholder approach to CSR highlighting the importance of collaboration, partnership, dialogue and engagement. This last approach is a pro-active approach to CSR. For example, it includes in the projects the contribution to the community well-being instead of avoiding negative impacts on local communities only. Furthermore the narrow view of CSR in project management can be highlighted by the fact that many studies show that systematically managers forgot some part of their social responsibility. For example, they exclude diversity management (such as parity men/ women in a company), poverty reduction, work/life balance, corruption or bribery… To finish, companies still separate financial, social and environmental responsibilities preventing manager to include CSR in projects. project.
The relatively traditional view of firm by manager cannot foster the introduction of CSR in companies and company’s
However even companies driven by a traditional view of management are able to bring up projects that create value for business and society due to the existence of standards and guidelines.
How to foster the use of CSR in projects?
Regarding the relative traditional view of CSR, government, organisations and CEO should foster the use of CSR at a corporate level to spread it out in project management. Governments and organisations can foster CSR at a project level by supporting SME whose stakeholders are local ones and whose budget is smaller preventing CSR development. Moreover they should promote to add the ecological and social aspects to the balance sheet as listed in the European Green Book. Furthermore, CSR culture should be first part of the corporate strategy before being part of the project strategy. Project managers and managers in general should be guided by CEO towards CSR because they are key decision makers and are considered as key changing agents. For example Eurobank has a strong CEO that succeeds to promote CSR within all the companies. But this required time for the CEO to spread out the policy within the company because sometimes manager does not all follow policies when CEO leaves. Companies can nominate a head of CSR and have managers of all Business Units involved in CSR discussion and implementation. Another example is Vigor’s CEO that achieved to spread the message into all stakeholders and even to engage his colleagues into the debate. The CSR policy should be communicated to all employees and anchored in project culture. One of the best practise done is the example of Finisher who trough a centralized program trained all 60,000 employees on CSR instead of doing so per business unit. To finish project management has to measure and controlled CSR performance to understand the benefits of it. Project management should raise some basic questions about CSR activities before developing key performance indicators (KPIs) such as how can we measure environmental, social and economic performance at a project level. Will the project have negative long-term impact to the environment? Managers should then develop performance indicators at corporate and project level. Indicators should meet various stakeholder concerns but are difficult to formulate. Defining measurable KPIs and monitoring them help project management and the organisation to keep CSR agenda on track. For instance, Power developed since 2004 around 450 indicators (weighed and analysed) designed according to a Triple Bottom Line agenda. The parent company, the divisions and companies all collect data; it permits that CSR agenda is respected, knowledgeable and up-to-date. Results should be reported to the Chief officer and externally to the sustainability report. Companies’ main actors, governments and organisations should foster CSR use at a business level to spread it at a project management level. Many companies have shown tremendous results thanks to corporate social responsibility management.
Today societies require an adaptation of corporate social responsibilities to governments, organisations, companies and projects. Each level needs to develop a CSR strategy. CSR is now a business management concept and a business strategy for project management. Interests of the project should meet with the interests of the different stakeholder. Bringing CSR to project lead to more efficient project and partnership and foster trustful cooperation among the stakeholders. However in real-life it is difficult because managers still hold a traditional view of CSR by considering only few stakeholders and being changed reluctant. The application of CSR at a project level requires that a manager have strong knowledge in this field to develop and promote it. The economic success of CSR activities is not as fast as the one from the production activities. It means that manager should develop planning to control and evaluate the performance of CSR activities on a project. Adding the environmental and the social activities to the balance sheet of a project would highlight the contribution of CSR to a project. References Schieg M. (2009), “The model of corporate social responsibility in project management”, Business: theory and practice, 10(4), 315-321
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The School of Management-Marketing of the Romanian-American University prides itself that as ambitious newcomers in the educational field, w...
Published on Dec 11, 2013
The School of Management-Marketing of the Romanian-American University prides itself that as ambitious newcomers in the educational field, w...