Succeeding with Senior Management


Book Title: Succeeding with Senior Management: Getting the right support at the right time for your project  
Author:  G. Michael Campbell, PMP
Publisher:  American Management Association
List Price:   $24.95
Format:  Softcover, 224 pages
Publication Date:   2017    
ISBN: 978-0-8144-3850-3
Reviewer:     Maryanne Coelln, PMP
Review Date:   October/2017



This book lived up to its title in providing tips on how to best communicate with senior leadership in any company. The author highlighted the perspective in which projects were evaluated at the top levels of a company, the politics involved, and real life experiences to help illustrate his points.

Overview of Book’s Structure

The book is broken into 22 chapters with specific areas of focus. Starting with Understanding the Facts of Life for Executives, Mr. Campbell introduces the reader to what matters most to executives and how projects fit in with running the business. This sets the tone for the rest of the book. Examples abound in each chapter from his own experiences, taking the reader from concepts such as “managing up”, communicating with Stakeholders on a variety of perspectives and gaining Sponsor support.

The chapters have relative illustrations for the visual reader to help describe the points he is making. Each chapter has a “Points to Remember” section with key bulleted items to help reinforce the key points covered in each chapter. After reading the book, these would be helpful to flip to when looking for a refresh of key ideas in your own work environment.


Mr. Campbell concisely describes business principles for those of us who didn’t learn them in school or on the job. What could take a lifetime of misunderstandings to learn about stakeholder management he has captured and shared openly from his personal experiences in an easy-to-read format.

In the chapter “Understanding the Facts of Life for Executives” Mr. Campbell lists four key questions that management must have the answers to, such as “Do we have the confidence that we can get the right return on investment once we turn over this new product or service to operations.” Project managers may focus too much on the success of the project delivering the scope on time and within budget. To an executive, unless the business itself is improved by the delivery of the project it may not be a successful project. Or it may not be a success if the completion of the project doesn’t enhance the executive’s aspirations for career advancement! Mr. Campbell stresses that the project’s key performance indicators must be well defined in advance and that the project manager must ensure that the goals expected by the executives approving the project will be met throughout the project.


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About the Reviewer

Maryanne Coelln, PMP

North Texas, USA


Maryanne Coelln
, PMP, is Director of Project Delivery for the American Airlines Federal Credit Union.  Maryanne has a B.S.C. degree in Marketing from Santa Clara University, California and earned her PMP in 2003. She has over 15 years of experience in leading technical project teams and is focused on developing practical methodologies. She has been an active member in the PMI Dallas Chapter for many years.


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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