Project management demands so much from today’s manager. But often – and despite project management training – project control is not conducted in a professional manner.

Are organisations wasting money by giving project management training to staff unsuited to the role of PM or actually not even in a role that requires such skills?

But as the Department for Business Innovation and Skills tells us, ‘Unfortunately projects sometimes fail to deliver, for a variety of avoidable reasons, e.g.:

• failure to take into account the needs and influences of stakeholders;
• failure to communicate and keep the stakeholders informed of developments;
• lack of attention to the impact of project work on the normal business of the organisation;
• producing expensive ‘Gold plated’ solutions when simple workable products would suffice;
• failure to identify and deal with the many risks that can affect achievement of project objectives;
•insufficient attention to planning, monitoring and control of the work of the project.

How To Organise, Plan and Control Projects
Department for Business Innovation and Skills, 2010

Further, in 2012 one report suggested that workers are stressed to such an extent that organisations are suffering lost productivity along with low morale with a high churn-rate in staff plus missed deadlines.

Much of this is put down to a mixture of:

• Almost two-thirds of meetings that are considered a waste of time
• Dealing with phone calls that are unplanned and a burdensome amount of emails
• No collaboration
• In almost a third of cases too much project oversight.

As already stated above this is an ongoing problem, but should the start point be one of relevance and professionalism? Is coaching a viable alternative to training?

Read more from a 2007 article by Brian Amble for Management Issues entitled “Amateur management leads to project failure“.