26 July 2018
When the Praxis Framework was first launched, I was often asked the question, "Why does project management need another methodology?" The simple answer to that is "It doesn't!" but that's the wrong question.
What people should really be asking is, "Are existing methodologies working?" In my view they are not. That's a bold thing to say in a market that is obsessed with methodologies and the certifications that go along with them. Why do I think this? There are several reasons:
For example: if current approaches were being applied effectively, we would not continue to see so many reports and surveys that constantly report similar levels of project failure; the market would not be so susceptible to 'magic bullet' solutions that promise to solve the problem; lessons learned reports would not regularly report that projects failed because people didn't do the simple things well.
Over 30 years of training and consultancy in project management, I became increasingly frustrated with organisations' obsession with quick solutions and failure to truly understand how to build an effective project delivery organisation. That frustration led to the creation of the Praxis Framework.
I can imagine you thinking that having berated the 'magic bullet' attitude, I'm now proposing a 'better magic bullet'. Far from it.
There are many guides available on the market. Popular ones include PRINCE2®, MSP®, the APM Body of Knowledge, the APM Competency Framework, the P3M3 maturity model, etc. The list is seemingly endless. All these guides contain really good guidance but collectively suffer from two problems:
- You need all of them to implement organisational project delivery but they have different structures and terminology.
- You read the book and you are pretty much on your own. Years of experience of working with companies' lessons learned reports show that projects often fail simply because people don't apply the good practice they learn on courses.
Praxis curates the good practice from multiple guides that have evolved over the last 20 years and places all this in a single integrated framework with one common terminology. It eliminates the need to bend and cajole multiple guides into a single organisational project delivery framework. All the hard work has been done.
Under the surface, all the popular guides espouse the same common-sense principles.
That the Praxis Framework is integrated and freely available won't make a real difference. We need to get people actually applying common sense before projects become more successful.
The Praxis Framework has a growing set of resources that help apply the principles. The 360o checklists encourage people to apply the basic principles, and I don't mean just the project managers. Sponsors, team members and stakeholders can get involved too. The assessment also provides a real time dashboard of improving organisational maturity. Praxis Local encourages people to create their own front end to the resources on the Praxis web site so that they can easily access what they need. iMA Praxis is an approach to understanding how different people perceive the project management fundamentals in different ways.
In short, the Praxis Framework was created to make a difference. To open up the discipline of project management and enable it to realise its potential.
Adrian Dooley, Lead Author of the Praxis Framework.
QA is the UK's most trusted training provider with over 30 years' experience delivering quality training solutions to over 6,000 clients. With a variety of courses available across 20 centres nationwide, QA's Praxis training is designed to aid your understanding of the Praxis Framework and enable you to work effectively as part of any project or programme management team. For more details visit: www.qa.com/praxis