PMI Pulse of the Profession® 2023: Embrace Power Skills for Project Success
Project Management Institute (PMI) published the 14th edition of its “Pulse of the Profession® 2023” report. The Annual PMI Global Survey on Project Management examines how putting a priority on power skills helps project professionals and organizations redefine project success in our fast-pivoting world.
PMI defines power skills as abilities and behaviors that facilitate working with others and help project professionals to succeed in the workplace. Some individuals and other organizations also refer to them as “soft skills” or “interpersonal skills.”
Project professionals rated communication, problem-solving, collaborative leadership and strategic thinking as the most critical power skills that help them fulfill organizational objectives. In the South Asia region, 74% respondents place importance on communication, 76% on problem-solving, 71% on collaborative leadership and 70% on strategic thinking.
The research studied the relationship between power skills and project success. Benefits realization management (BRM) maturity organizational agility, and project management maturity emerged as top factors of project success. It stressed that these factors are significantly more prevalent in organizations that prioritize power skills.
Organizations fostering power skills are likely to achieve 57% BRM maturity, 64% project management maturity, and 51% organizational agility. On the other hand, organizations that fail to focus on power skills are likely to witness 18% BRM maturity, 11% project management maturity, and 19% organizational agility.
Also, organizations that place high priority on power skills tend to perform better and meet business goals. While 72% of their projects successfully met business goals, only 28% of their projects experienced scope creep, and 17% experienced budget loss to project failure.
However, in spite of growing recognition of the need for these skills for success, organizations struggle to nurture them in their employees. According to talent decisionmakers, the main barriers to prioritizing power skills training and development are the cost issue and a lack of perceived value. The lack of perceived value is highest in industries like energy (58%) and manufacturing (57%) and lowest in construction (34%) and financial services (45%).
The report revealed several approaches that organizations can adopt to prioritize power skills:
• Step outside the iron triangle of scope, cost and time, and reinforce power skills that contribute to the everyday dynamics of project management.
• Focus on the power skills most tied to fulfilling organizational objectives.
• Build power skills in individual career development plans, and track their mastery during performance evaluations.
• Evaluate professional development and training programming to ensure it reflects the organization’s commitment to building power skills in employees.
• Allocate the right funding to power skills offerings.
• Introduce team-based assessments of power skills and strengthen their importance in the organization.
A total of 3,492 project professionals representing a range of industries and regions, including North America, Latin America, the Caribbean, China, Europe, South Asia, the Middle East, North Africa, Asia Pacific, and Sub-Saharan Africa were surveyed for the report.
Read the full report for more details.