NEWTOWN SQUARE, Pa.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--According to the 2014 Pulse of the Profession® In-Depth Report: Executive Sponsor Engagement — Top Driver of Project & Program Success, recently released by Project Management Institute (PMI) with contributions from Boston Consulting Group (BCG), having executive sponsors is the top driver of project success for the second year in a row. The report details the findings of a 2014 research study, which was undertaken with the goal of more fully understanding the role of executive sponsors and their impact on project and program outcomes.
It is imperative that organizations understand how to get the best from sponsors and how to enable their active engagement. “In their sponsorship roles, executives must become project ‘champions,’ working across stakeholder groups to deliver win-win solutions,” said PMI President and CEO Mark A. Langley. “Effective project sponsors use their influence within an organization to actively overcome challenges by communicating the project’s alignment to strategy, removing roadblocks, and driving organizational change.”
The study uncovered three primary factors that can limit or inhibit sponsors’ ability to be effective:
Overextension — Sponsors report that on average, they are working on three projects at one time, spending an average of 13 hours per week on each program they sponsor — affecting their ability to perform critical leadership actions such as motivating the team, securing resources, and making decisions.
Communication gaps — PMI’s Pulse of the Profession® In-Depth Report: The Essential Role of Communications revealed that US$75 million of every US$1 billion spent on projects is wasted due to ineffective communications. In the context of executive sponsorship, communication is vital because people both above and below are relying on the sponsor to be able to influence and align stakeholders, exhibit leadership, and make decisions.
Lack of skills development — While on-the-job training is the most common way for executive sponsors to acquire knowledge and skills, better project outcomes are achieved when organizations offer formal development (including from the project management office, mentoring from other executive sponsors, and external development opportunities).
To overcome these issues and more effectively engage executive sponsors, the report recommends that organizations re-evaluate project sponsors in leadership roles and place priority on critical competencies such as: rallying support of senior management, intervention on escalated issues, removal of roadblocks, and management of stakeholders, resources, and budgets. In doing so, organizations can begin to bridge the communication gap between influencers and implementers to significantly increase engagement, boost project success rates, and reduce risk.
About this Report
Research for PMI’s Pulse of the Profession® In-Depth Report: Executive Sponsor Engagement — Top Driver of Project & Program Success research was conducted in July 2014, among 897 project management professionals who provide project, program or portfolio management services within organizations and 232 executives and directors who have sponsored projects and programs in the past two years within organizations of US$100 million or more in revenue. Additional in-depth telephone interviews were conducted with both audiences for the purpose of obtaining deeper insights into opinions and examples of situations.
To download the full report, visit www.PMI.org/Pulse.
About the Pulse of the Profession/Methodology
Conducted since 2006, PMI's Pulse of the Profession® is the annual global survey of project management professionals. The Pulse of the Profession charts the major trends for project management now and in the future. It features original market research that reports feedback and insights from project, program and portfolio managers, along with an analysis of third-party data. The newest edition of the Pulse features feedback and insights from over 2500 project management leaders and practitioners across North America, Asia Pacific, Europe, the Middle East, Africa (EMEA) and Latin America and Caribbean regions.
To access PMI's Pulse of the Profession® please visit www.pmi.org/pulse.
About Project Management Institute (PMI)
Project Management Institute is the world's leading not-for-profit professional membership association for the project, program and portfolio management profession. Founded in 1969, PMI delivers value for more than 2.9 million professionals working in nearly every country in the world through global advocacy, collaboration, education and research. PMI advances careers, improves organizational success and further matures the profession of project management through its globally recognized standards, certifications, resources, tools academic research, publications, professional development courses, and networking opportunities. As part of the PMI family, Human Systems International (HSI) provides organizational assessment and benchmarking services to leading businesses and government, while ProjectManagement.com and ProjectsAtWork.com create online global communities that deliver more resources, better tools, larger networks and broader perspectives.