I had an interesting discussion yesterday with some fellow project management practitioners.
The basis of the discussion “Is a Project Manager role a thankless job?”
We got the feeling that one of our fellow project management practitioners was having a bad time of it! He was seeking some encouragement.
He was right though. The role of project manager can be a thankless job. Unfortunately it is like any leadership position.
Everybody appears to seek the glory and praise when the project is doing well or succeeds. But when things aren’t going too well then the fingers start pointing. First to be pointed at are those in a leadership role. In the case of a project those fingers are targeted on the project manager. Irrespective of where the blame or responsibility for the issues rests. Project manager, as leader, has to be prepared to praise everyone else for the occasional successes and must be willing to “fall on one’s sword” when things get bad. The project manager must take it on the chin and move forward.
Unfortunately, project management, like leadership, is all too frequently a lonely position. One where you need to celebrate the small successes when you can. Where you learn, with experience, that sometimes you leave others to take the final credit and glory!