China Brings Cultural Strengths into PM


Interview with Stacy Goff

CEO of ProjectExperts®
Co-Founder & Past President, IPMA-USA
Former Vice President & Honorary Fellow, IPMA

Interviewed by Yu Yanjuan
Journalist, Project Management Review: PMR (China)

PMR Introduction

Stacy A. Goff, IPMA Level D®, PMP®, the PM Performance Coach, is CEO of ProjectExperts®, a USA-based global Portfolio, Program, and Project Management consulting, coaching and training company. A Project Management practitioner since 1970 and consultant since 1982, he helps improve Enterprise, Department, Project Team, and personal PM effectiveness and Performance.

An insightful consultant and dynamic speaker, Goff presents at major global congresses and conferences, and offers workshops of interest to Executives, Managers, Program and Project Managers and leaders, technical staff, and individual contributors. His Project Management tools and methods are used by government agencies, enterprises and other consultancies on six continents.

A prolific writer, his articles appear on ProjectExperts.com, IPMA-USA.org, and PM World Journal, and are translated on other websites around the world. His Change Agents blog is a popular section of the IPMA-USA.org website. His industry vision is sought by others: He wrote Chapter 9, Visions for the PM Software Industry, for Project Management Institute’s book, Project Management Circa 2025. He co-authored the chapter on Project Communication for IPMA-Germany’s advanced Project Competence Baseline.

Goff has co-founded professional associations and chapters, and participated in standards development teams. He is co-founder and recent President of IPMA-USA, and was the 2011-2014 Vice President of Marketing and Events for IPMA, the International Project Management Association. In 2015, he was named an IPMA Honorary Fellow. He has also served as a member, chapter co-founder, and contributor (articles, book chapters, webinars) for PMI, Project Management Institure, since 1983.

Mr. Goff brings a results-oriented approach to Personal, Project, Program, and Portfolio Management; thus his tagline, the PM Performance Coach. His insight for the needed PM Competences and his grasp of the secrets to organizational performance translate to improved business results.


Project Management Review (PMR):     You were an amateur race car driver. Have you applied PM knowledge in driving race cars?

Stacy Goff (Goff):       The experience of driving race cars and having a PM background is a two-way street—it offers benefits in both directions. First, I was successful as an amateur race driver because, in part, of my project management experience. I was always better-prepared than most other drivers; I was able to strategize, prioritize, and more intensely focus than others; it was easier to convince sponsors to support our effort; and we always attracted a strong team.

Second, as you suggest, racing improved my project insights: the excitement, risk and intensity of “driving at speed” gave me a much deeper understanding of the secrets of high-performance. And this was not just my own high-performance efforts, but also, those of my team.

PMR:   In one of your articles, you have made comparisons about different PM certifications. What’s your attitude towards certifications (their role, necessity, etc.)?

Goff:    Yes, the article you mentioned, Comparing PM Certifications: Which Is Best For You?, evaluates the top certifications in the world of project and program management. These range from exam-based certifications, to those that require professional assessment of demonstrated competences in actual initiatives. In the article, I identified three criteria for evaluating PM certifications: A. Prerequisites; B. Breadth of Coverage; and C. Rigor of Assessment.

To write the article, I used independent research that evaluated a wide range of PM certification offerings, scoring each certification against the criteria above. I cross-multiplied the three criterion’s normalized scores to form what I named “The Certification Effectiveness Cube”. The key to each certification’s appropriateness (and thus necessity) is whether it matches the role, and level of experience, of the certificant, and of the certification.

Each PM certification has a target audience, and a purpose for that audience. Some, such as those that use multiple-choice exams, are often designed for an entry-level audience: Those who are just beginning their career in project management. They do very little for more advanced practitioners.

Other certifications, with stronger prerequisites, higher breadth of coverage, and greater rigor, are targeted towards advanced audiences. These require more than memorizing for an exam; they require demonstrated competence or results in actual projects or programs.

There are many other certifications beyond those I evaluated. Are they necessary? Perhaps! Three audiences for whom a PM certification might be most-needed include:


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Editor’s note: This interview was first published in PMR, Project Management Review magazine, China.  It is republished here with the permission of PMR. The PM World Journal maintains a cooperative relationship with PMR, periodically republishing works from each other’s publications. To see the original interview with Chinese introduction, visit PMR at http://www.pmreview.com.cn/english/

How to cite this interview: Yanjuan, Y. (2018).  China Brings Cultural Strengths into PM, Interview with Stacy Goff, Project Management Review, China, Republished in PM World Journal, Vol. VII, Issue VII – July.  Available online at https://pmworldjournal.net/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/pmwj72-Jul2018-Yanjuan-Interview-with-Stacy-Goff.pdf

About the Interviewer

Yu Yanjuan

Beijing, China



Yu Yanjuan
, Bachelor’s Degree, graduated from the English Department of Beijing International Studies University (BISU) in China. She is now an English-language journalist and editor working for Project Management Review Magazine and website. In the past, she has worked as a journalist and editor for China Manned Space Agency website and Student English Times. She once worked part-time as English teacher in training centers. For work contact, she can be reached via email [email protected] or Linkedin https://www.linkedin.com/in/yanjuan-yu-76b280151/.