Projects and Politics: Navigating the Interfaces [Livestream] | Summary and Q&A

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July 7, 2021
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Online PM Courses - Mike Clayton
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Projects and Politics: Navigating the Interfaces [Livestream]

TL;DR

Understanding the political landscape is crucial for project managers, as projects involve different people with diverse perspectives and preferences. Political astuteness and the ability to build alliances are key for success.

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Questions & Answers

Q: How can project managers navigate and understand the power structure within their organization?

Understanding the power structure requires observation and being alert to changes in relationships. Tools such as sociograms and relationship charts can help map out the network of relationships within the organization.

Q: What are some strategies for building alliances with key stakeholders?

Building alliances requires reciprocity and finding common ground. Offering support, active listening, and providing value through knowledge sharing can help build strong alliances.

Q: How can project managers effectively engage with stakeholders who have opposing views or resist change?

It is important to listen to opposing views and engage in respectful dialogue. While it is okay to disagree with the reasons for resistance, it is crucial to remain respectful of individuals and focus on finding common ground.

Q: How can project managers leverage political astuteness to achieve project goals?

Political astuteness involves understanding the power dynamics, building relationships, and using influence effectively. By being aware of the political landscape and utilizing social power bases, project managers can navigate through potential obstacles and achieve project goals.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • Project management is all about people, and wherever there are people, there is politics. Projects can be politically charged at different scales, from local to national levels.

  • Successful project managers need to have sensitivity, engagement, and influencing skills in the political domain. They also need a high level of comfort with uncertainty and complexity.

  • Understanding power structures, attracting people through positive qualities, building a reputation, and forming alliances are necessary for effective project management in a political environment.

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