Self Assessment

The link between project manager and the class of risks called Self suggests a behavior that can be called Assess. Because the risks in the Self category concern the project manager's abilities, capabilities, and knowledge regarding the management of IS projects (e.g., Lack of project management skills), the project manager needs to continually assess her capabilities against the project needs. The project manager can then handle any recognized shortfall in capability herself. Assessment also may need to be done by others — for example, the project manager's manager or outside auditors — to identify any shortfalls not recognized by the project manager herself. The Assess behavior requires of the project manager that she periodically ask questions of herself that are aimed at surfacing the risks in the Self category. Unfortunately, it is difficult to get an accurate answer when people ask themselves such questions as "Am I managing change properly?" "Do I lack effective project management skills?" "Do I lack an effective project management methodology?" Yet these are the first three risk items in the Self category shown in Exhibit 2.

The same problem exists for each of the risk items when phrased by individuals as a question of themselves. Nonetheless, a project manager must ask these questions of herself and answer to the best of her ability. However, there are strategies that can make a project manager more effective in answering these questions. One way is to use independent auditors. This is a viable proposition where there are knowledgeable experienced project managers in-house who can execute an unbiased audit. A second form of audit is to use assessment mechanisms such as those offered by the Software Engineering Institute and its Process Maturity Model.[—] A third way of handling these questions is for the project manager to benchmark other projects and other organizations to compare and learn. These three different, but complementary, strategies may greatly enhance the project manager's ability to exercise the Assess behavior.

Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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