The true value of the profession
What does project management bring to the world? This was the question I was answering over dinner with my wife recently.
She, a midwife, spends her time helping to deliver life into the world, to ensure mother and baby are happy and healthy and to cope with emergency situations.
I wont compare her role to that of a project manager, nor giving birth to a project, but the question she posed was valid: Is project management a matter of life and death? Of course, I insisted.
But that wasnt the unconsidered defence of someone with a vested interest in the profession. I truly believe it.
Sir John Armitt once told me: My personal belief in life is that we can actually do anything. He is right.
Take, for instance, the annual APM Project Management Awards, of which I was lucky enough to be a judge again this year. In the Project-sponsored Social Award of the Year category I came across numerous projects that were working to change people lives. An adult work placement programme sponsored by BT Group is helping get the long-term unemployed back in to work and, in Brent, a team of project managers has constructed a new school for children with learning difficulties, basing the scope around input from the children themselves.
The Awards, which take place on Monday 4 November at the London Hilton on Park Lane, is just one event where the profession can stand back and applaud practitioners hard work.
But this is something we need to do more regularly. Celebrate success. It is certainly something I have tried to do throughout the pages of Project magazine in the past year.
Shouting about success is inherently un-British, I know, but those delivering life-changing projects, like the finalists in this years APM Awards, need to be loud and proud.
What does project management bring to the world? Whatever we want it to.
I want to hear from you about your projects and what they are doing to change the world in any way however big or small.