Project Managers aka Beardosophy 2

 

You are looking at hiring a Project Manager to run a new initiative that is going to cost $5m. The projected upside of running this project is that it is going to make the organisation $20m over the next 4 years. You have three candidates on the shortlist.

Candidate No. 1 – Has done a very similar project at a similar organisation. Is seeking a $200k package.

Candidate No. 2 – Has great qualifications, has run projects half the size and is highly motivated to gain this experience. Is seking $160k package.

Candidate No. 3 – Has no functional experience in this business domain but is an experienced project manager. Is seeking $180k package.

As you read through the candidates I wonder if you are thinking you have all the information you need to make a decision or are you already starting to raise a list of questions to ask to determine suitability. What are their qualifications? What companies did they work at? Were they tier one or blue chip organisations? How big were the projects, how many projects and what were the dimensions of those projects? Was the technology environment the same? Will they fit in culturally with stakeholders? Hopefully you were mentally writing a long list as you read.

Unfortunately a number of organisations only focus on the price. What should be the reality though is that the differences in salary should not be anywhere near as significant when it comes to making a decision as the above questions. We really should rule the salary differences out pretty quickly (I hope you’re following where I am going here).

By far the biggest question we should be asking is will this person successfully deliver this project? Blowing $5m is a major downer. But pulling off the project and reaping the benefits – wow, what a success.

So who will be successful and how do we make that choice? Are our choices based on valid criteria for this specific project, for this specific set of stakeholders, with this level of complexitiy, with this technology etc? Do we tell ourselves that we’ve made a considered, business centered decision or in reality, like growing a beard, did it just sort of feel right?

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