How to sell PRINCE2® training to your boss
Projects help organizations change, grow and move forward. Organizations will also perform projects to benefit their customers, clients or the general public. Because projects are a part of everyday life for many industries, project management training is often an essential expense for many organizations. However, many managers don't understand the importance of such training. Read this article for help persuading your boss to get project management training for you and your team.
Does your organization run projects? It would be a strange organization if it didn’t, so I’m assuming the answer is yes. Are all your projects delivered on time, within budget and according to expectation? I am assuming the answer is no. That’s because most projects are either late, over budget, or don’t deliver what stakeholders expect from them. How much would your organization save, not just in terms of money, but in terms of resource time if your projects were more successful? The answer is quite a bit or a lot.
The fact of the matter is that more and more organizations are undertaking projects more regularly. However, the skills required to direct and manage such projects are very specific and are not normally ones which people are equipped with either at school or at university.
Furthermore, project management as a profession has gained in reputation in recent years, as the London 2012 Olympics came to town, and as TV series such as the BBC’s The Apprentice popularized project management. The oft-repeated mistakes by the contestants in the latter shows that project management skills are certainly in need of improvement in many cases. That’s where PRINCE2 comes in.
Here’s 10 reasons why attending a PRINCE2 course will help your organization:
1. Your boss can focus on the return on investment
If your boss is providing the money to fund your project, perhaps the most important decision he or she will need to take is to decide whether your project is worth investing in.
It might be that there’s a dozen other projects all competing for the same funds and resources. Your boss will need to understand therefore the benefits versus the costs, timescales and risks. The benefits would need to outweigh the other things for your project to be worthwhile. Built into the heart of PRINCE2 – in fact it’s one of its principles – is a belief that project decisions need to have an understanding of these things.
In other words there is a focus on the project benefits which helps to ensure the project gives value for money.
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2. PRINCE2 can be used on any project
No matter how big or how small your project is, no matter what type of project it is, you can still use PRINCE2. That’s right – it can be used on all types and sizes of projects. The terminology used in PRINCE2 is very generic – there’s no industry-specific terminology.
3. PRINCE2 will save your boss’s time
Nobody likes to attend meetings, especially the boring progress-type meetings. Your boss is probably already extremely busy and when your next project starts, he or she is probably dreading the extra meetings required.
Well, the good news for your boss is that PRINCE2 recommends not having regular meetings between the project manager and project sponsor because the information about progress can be conveyed in reports. Applying PRINCE2 therefore will save your boss time.
4. It’s popular for a reason – it works
PRINCE2 is the world’s most popular project management framework. More people are certified in PRINCE2 than any other project management certification.
It's widely practiced especially in the UK, but increasingly internationally. That’s in both the public and private sectors. Many international brands use PRINCE2 to help them manage their projects. The United Nations, Tesco, DHL, Rolls Royce, Barclays, BP, Skandia and Sun Microsystems are just a few examples.
There’s a good reason why these organizations use it – it’s a proven and effective method which works. It can work for your organization too.
5. You’ll gain from the experience of others
PRINCE2 is based upon modern best practices in project management. In other words, it was developed by some very experienced project managers, so you will benefit from their enormous experience. There’s no need for your organization to create its own project management method. Just apply PRINCE2 and tailor it to suit your organization’s needs accordingly.
6. You’ll learn a common vocabulary
If you study PRINCE2 with others from your organization, you’ll learn a common vocabulary which you can use on all your projects. This can help to make your project communications more efficient.
7. Continuous improvement
There’s an inbuilt mechanism in PRINCE2 to continuously improve your organization’s project management practices. It’s one of PRINCE2’s most important features. Over time, if you use PRINCE2 you will learn to make fewer mistakes and your projects will become more efficient. This will help save your organization time and money.
8. You can use PRINCE2 alongside other methods
If you work in the IT industry, the chances are that you will have heard of Agile. These are development methods recently designed to assist teams of software developers deliver software more efficiently. If your organization uses agile methods, they will work alongside PRINCE2. In fact the latest version of PRINCE2 was designed to work alongside such agile methods and fills many of the holes which exist with agile methods.
9. Clearly defined structure
PRINCE2 is very clear about which project management role is responsible and accountable and for what. You mean there’s a bunch of roles defined in PRINCE2, not just project manager? That’s right, there’s team manager role as well as project manager. There’s a support role and more senior roles too.
A great thing about PRINCE2 is that it specifically describes which role is responsible for taking which decisions and when. This can be of enormous benefit to your projects because it helps everyone understand who is responsible.
10. Clearly defined decision points
Every project has a beginning, a middle and an end. Wouldn’t it be great if everyone involved knows what decisions need to be taken and when? Well, if you go on a PRINCE2 course, this is one of the things that you’ll learn about. This means that when you plan your project you can plan the key dates when your boss will need to be involved in taking decisions.
So that concludes our 10 good reasons why attending a PRINCE2 course will help your organization.
In summary then, we’ve shown you in this article how PRINCE2 can be of benefit to your organization. The relatively small cost involved in you attending a PRINCE2 training course will be far outweighed by the benefits once you start to apply PRINCE2 on your projects.
So, don’t delay any longer. Book that meeting with your boss and explain to him how you think PRINCE2 is going to help him and your organization better manage its projects
Simon Buehring is the Founder and Managing Director of Knowledge Train.