This article is copyright to Greg Strid, © 2010
Submitted for publication October 27, 2010
and published here November 1, 2010

Introduction | The 1950s to 1980s | The 1990s to the Present Day
The Impact on Projects | Conclusion


Wideman feels that during the planning phase decisions made through consensus are preferred (by exercising leadership) and through consent during the production phase (as a result of managership). Decision by consensus permits discovery and deals better with differing points of view, which is essential in the formation stages. Decision by consent utilizes established relationships (nurtured during the planning stages), responds better to problems, and makes it easier for the team to focus on project goals.

The piece concludes by stressing that project managers must exhibit both leadership and "managership" skills. Leadership works during the formation stages, and managership is effective through production and execution phases. It is the stage of the project life cycle that determines the need for one or the other. He believes that the style of "stewardship" must correspond with the development of the team as it progresses toward self-direction. The change in stewardship is also accompanied by a change in decision-making, from consensus at inception, to consent during production.

I agree with Wideman's conclusions because they were derived from a strong set of reasons supporting his argument. I would also add that the evolution of project management stewardship and decision-making owes a lot to the evolution of the business enterprise from the 1950s until today. The skills developed by project managers were in large part a necessary response to ever-changing market conditions, first domestic, then global.

The Impact on Projects  The Impact on Projects

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