Good News or Not For Project Management?

Good News or Not For Project Management? image shutterstock 144223186

“The 800 pound gorilla is now a 1200 pound gorilla”

Some pretty big news came out of the PMI recently; the world’s leading not-for-profit membership association for the project management profession announced the acquisition of (formerly Gantthead) and The National Post provides more information.

These are two of the largest online resources for project managers and professionals, both over 10 years old.

“The combination of PMI,, and bring greater opportunities to the 51 million people around the globe who are engaged in the management of projects. Together, we will deliver access to more resources, better tools, larger networks and broader perspectives,” said Mark A. Langley, President and CEO of PMI.

Dave Garrett, CEO of Gantthead, which operates, added: ”We couldn’t be more excited to be part of the PMI family.”

Dave Garrett in his alert to the members of described the announcement as “huge”.

All parties stressed that content and points of view on and would remain impartial.

So, is this good news for project management or not such good news? I posed the question on various LinkedIn groups and the response was, perhaps to be expected, mixed – as indeed the conversation continues to be.

Bill Duncan, primary author of the 1996 PMBoK Guide and Volunteer Director of Certification for ASAPM was not convinced: “Not so good news”, was his initial declaration. “The 800 pound gorilla is now a 1200 pound gorilla”.

Andy Jordan, portfolio, programme, project and PMO consultant, author, speaker and instructor, felt more encouraged: “I am thrilled with this evolution, excited about what is ahead for me, for the people I work with, and (far more importantly) am excited that more people will now have exposure to more views and opinions.”

Ignoring the ‘you either love PMI or you hate PMI’ position, many felt that it definitely could be a good thing and only time will tell.

As Jean Binder, Senior Project Manager, Systems Biology Research, suggested: “… time will show us the benefits (and possibly constraints) of this partnership, as there is indeed a great potential.”

Dave Garrett actively engaged in these discussions and summarised his position with the following: “First of all, having operated outside of PMI for 14 years, I understand the perspective of those who feel there’s a need for a variety of perspectives. I actually think that our joining up with them is a strong indication that they are open to new ideas and ways of doing things.

”As for value, I know from the hundreds of messages we get thanking us every week that we provide value to a large audience (a member base of over 560K). We’re certainly not perfect, but we’re trying and would love to have any and all of your input on what we can do better.

“The direction we’ve got from PMI is to ‘continue doing what you’re doing’ and to let them know what they can do to help us do it better. They will also help us reach a much larger audience. They’ve explicitly agreed that we should not be “PMI-ed”. So we plan to keep working with a large community of practitioners to produce real world content from a number of perspectives.

“The one thing that I can tell you is that we’re not evil – we’re just here to try to help everyone that we can. Again, if there are ways we can do thing better, please let me know.”

So there you have it – you can have your say and your thoughts will be welcomed.

But apart from the question as to whether this is in fact a good or a bad thing for project management, we should perhaps also consider a second question: Does this mean that there is a gap in the market for an independent project management informative community?

Is the balance now swayed too far towards the formal project associations or does the myriad of LinkedIn groups, Twitter communities, podcasts and blogs and other social connecting tools mean that this ‘gap’ is already filled?

Or is it the case that project management has moved on and that there is now no need for a ‘new’ Gantthead or ProjectsAtWork?

What do you think?

No answers for now but very much a time for watching the project management news and actively contributing the opportunity.

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