Book Title: The Social Project Manager
Author: Peter Taylor
Publisher: Routledge (A Gower Book)
List Price: US$47.96
Format: hard cover; 175
Publication Date: 2015 (Gower); 2016 (Routledge)
Reviewer: Susan Riewe
Review Date: January 2017
Introduction to the Book
“The Social Project Manager” explores the next generation of project management – the marriage of traditional practice with collaboration via social platform tools that mirror the way people are communicating outside of the office. The book’s subtitle, Balancing Collaboration with Centralised Control in a Project Driven World, sums up the need to find a balance between formal project management standards and informal real-time collaboration.
The author invited leading providers of social technology products to contribute their thoughts on project management in today’s world, communication and how to integrate tradition with technology. The author inserts comments within these essays, as well as, sharing his own knowledge and social stories as examples.
Overview of Book’s Structure
This book is organized into six chapters, starting with the evolution of project management, moving on to practicing social project management and becoming a socially mature organization and ending with a list of eleven tips for success.
Each chapter is infused with a mix of essays by providers of social project tools, author knowledge and comments, as well as real world examples. Here is a summary of each chapter:
Chapter one – The Past, the Present and the Possible Social Future – compares traditional project management with Project Management 2.0 (the addition of distributed collaboration). The author then explains in detail how the social aspect is the next evolution of PM and the need to achieve the right balance of social collaboration.
Chapter two – The Challenge of Being a Social Project Manager – defines Social Project Managers as using ‘modern software tools to decentralize specific project processes, but retain the collaborative essentials’. Communications and decisions are visible and real-time, reducing the need for meetings and increasing collaboration, commitment and performance.
Chapter three – The Practical Social Project Manager – delves into the benefits of becoming a social project manager, the increased success of projects, how social fits into the project lifecycle, how it affects the team and how to balance collaboration with centralized control.
Chapter four – The Social Project Manager as a Commercial Force – is a view of the project-based organization selling knowledge and expertise rather than products. The project managers are the firm’s assets, so the communication skills of these managers is key to keeping their clients satisfied and insuring the continuance of the relationship.
About the Reviewer
North Texas, USA
Susan Riewe has been in the project management field for the past 18 years, and earned certification in February of 2008. Most of her experience has been with IT related projects for a major retailer. She is currently working as an analyst for a pharmacy management company in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Susan may be contacted at: email@example.com
Editor’s note: This book review was the result of a partnership between the publisher, PM World and the PMI Dallas Chapter. Authors and publishers provide the books to PM World; books are delivered to the PMI Dallas Chapter, where they are offered free to PMI members to review; book reviews are published in the PM World Journal and PM World Library. PMI Dallas Chapter members can keep the books as well as claim PDUs for PMP recertification when their reviews are published. Chapter members are generally mid-career professionals, the audience for most project management books.
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