Indicators of PM Competence

PM Certification commentary by William Duncan, IPMA-USA Certification Director. I haven’t been very reliable about posting here regularly. Part of the reason is that I often get involved in LinkedIn discussions about subjects that are near and dear to my heart … like project management competence. So in lieu of copying my comments in here, … Read moreIndicators of PM Competence

Performance Based Competency

PM Certification commentary by William Duncan, IPMA-USA Certification Director. I’ve been getting a fair number of questions recently about “performance based competencies,” and it’s been quite a while since I posted anything here, so I decided to kill two birds with one stone and post something on the topic. The following text is adapted from … Read morePerformance Based Competency

More on Project Success

PM Certification commentary by William Duncan, IPMA-USA Certification Director. A slightly edited version of a recent LinkedIn post … this all started with a question that asked, “is scope, cost, and schedule enough to determine ‘project success.’” I responded with my usual position that “project success” is not an absolute, and that there were two … Read moreMore on Project Success

Art or Science?

PM Certification commentary by William Duncan, IPMA-USA Certification Director. Once again, from a LinkedIn discussion … someone posted a question. “Is project management an art or a science?” There were nearly 30 comments, most of which argued “both,” and most of which leapt right into the discussion without bothering to define their terms. So here … Read moreArt or Science?

GAPPS Program Manager Standard

PM Certification commentary by William Duncan, IPMA-USA Certification Director. GAPPS is the Global Alliance for Project Performance Standards. IPMA-USA is a founding member of GAPPS, and we continue to be active in supporting their standards development efforts. We also use their standards as part of our implementation of IPMA’s Four-Level-Certification (4-L-C) Program. GAPPS has recently … Read moreGAPPS Program Manager Standard

Are activities part of the WBS?

PM Certification commentary by William Duncan, IPMA-USA Certification Director. I got an email earlier today from an IPMA-USA member who wanted an answer to the title questions above. I told him “yes,” and he then quoted my words from the 1996 version of A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge back to me: “The activity list must … Read moreAre activities part of the WBS?

The rush to licensure

PM Certification commentary by William Duncan, IPMA-USA Certification Director. The idea of licensed project managers has been discussed off-and-on for nearly 30 years now. With the Association of Project Managers in the UK apparently on the verge of getting approval from the British government to begin chartering project management, the discussions are heating up again. … Read moreThe rush to licensure

Why do we repeat our mistakes?

PM Certification commentary by William Duncan, IPMA-USA Certification Director. According to research, it’s because we don’t realize we’re making mistakes. http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/06/20/the-anosognosics-dilemma-1/?ref=global-home Here’s a quote from the above to whet your appetite: “[It’s] not just that people said these positive things about themselves, but they really, really believed them. Which led to my observation: if you’re incompetent, … Read moreWhy do we repeat our mistakes?

Can’t anybody here play this game?

PM Certification commentary by William Duncan, IPMA-USA Certification Director. My Dad always rooted for the underdog. As a result, I hated Casey Stengel and the Yankee’s with a passion … until Casey took over the hopelessly inept Mets, and then he became one of my favorites. The quote above dates from his experience managing the … Read moreCan’t anybody here play this game?

Is Yours a PM Certification or a Certificate?

PM Commentary by Stacy Goff

We have noticed a significant recent increase in advertisements for “PM Certifications”, resulting in “Certified Project Managers”, that are really Certificates in a pm-related training. It would seem that some fail to understand the difference.

The increase in “certification” promotions makes sense, in part, because, the competition in the training industry is stiff. And as we frequently note, Billions of $USD spent in various project management-related training has led to little-to-no improvement in organizational project and program performance. Thus, organizations ranging from educational institutions to training companies are adding new certifications in project management. Or are they?

Most of these offerings are certificates, not certifications. And while I believe the offerers to be misguided, rather than intentionally misleading, these misstatements damage us all while they continue. Why? Because Executives funding these programs are expecting PM performance results they are not receiving.

An Early Certificate in PM
In 1985 my company (Goff Associates, Inc., the ProjectExperts®) instituted a PM Certificate for learning participants in organizations that engaged key portions of my curriculum. A few Aerospace companies, Insurance companies, and Government Agencies embraced this approach, because they valued some evidence of grasp of the key practices in project management. The curriculum included:

  • Small Project Management, a 2-day workshop
  • Early Project Estimating, a 2-day workshop
  • Project Management Tools ‘N Techniques® a 3-day workshop
  • Leading and Managing a Project Team, a 2-day workshop

The Certificate program included a six-week post-course follow-up for each workshop, where Managers of the learners worked with their staff to assess their application of the workshop’s Learning Objectives. To earn the Certificate, participants were evaluated in two ways:

Read moreIs Yours a PM Certification or a Certificate?