“A project manager’s ability to make good decisions is only as good as what he or she knows. What a
project manager knows is only as good as the data
A significant challenge to effectively managing projects is how to overcome the disconnect between expectation and reality that grows out of mismatches between an organisation’s capability to deliver and its people.
People are at the heart of project delivery. Project delivery, in turn, depends on those people having the right skills, capacity, information, freedom, and time to fulfill project demand. Projects always start with the best intentions, with everybody pulling in the same direction. Then, new ideas come up, hindsight kicks in, and relationships begin to develop amongst people. Often, projects begin to spiral out of control because people do not know how to draw insight from relevant information. They do not know how to bring data close enough to their decision-making process to benefit from it.
This ineffectual use of data has an impact on management’s ability to address the problems that invariably arise throughout a project. Whether those decisions are operational or concern resource allocation, many of them have downstream ripple effects. The key to project managers making the right decisions is knowing how to draw on their experience and ideas as well as the information available to them so that they can intervene in timely and efficient ways—ways that stick. A project manager’s ability to make good decisions is only as good as what he or she knows. What a project manager knows is only as good as the data available.