The Entrepreneurial Project Manager



Book Title: The Entrepreneurial Project Manager
Author:  Christopher Cook
Publisher: CRC Press, Taylor & Francis Group, Auerbach
List Price: $69.95
Format:  Hardcover, 196 pages
Publication Date:  August 2017   
ISBN: 978-1-4987-8235-7
Reviewer: Patt Chowdhury, MBA, MM, CAPM®
Review Date: September 2018



Based on the title, I expected a book with a formula or blueprint for a new approach to managing both a project and a project team.  After reading it, I found this wasn’t exactly the case. The author has a unique perspective.

The author views the entrepreneurial mindset as the best approach for any project manager. This means that project managers will be as dependent upon on common sense, their life lessons, and observations of a variety of philosophers, elementary school teachers, pets, business leaders, sports figures and well-known athletic coaches as they are on the PMBOK. This sort of thinking will uncover opportunities for problem seeking, problem solving and professional growth for project managers engaged in traditional, agile and hybrid projects.

Overview of Book’s Structure

This book is arranged into 12 chapters of three to 16 sections that illustrate the theme of the chapter title but may not relate in any particular way to the other chapters. The assortment of topics provides insight to a wide variety of approaches, situations, and challenges. The common thread among the chapters is that most discuss Stoicism, Taoism and Sales.

Chapter 1:   Introduction
Chapter 2:   Traditional Mindset
Chapter 3:   Entrepreneurial Mindset
Chapter 4:   Organizational Strategy
Chapter 5:   Exploit Challenges
Chapter 6:   Entrepreneurial Agile Management
Chapter 7:   Pessimistic Optimist
Chapter 8:   80/20 Technique
Chapter 9:   Internalize Failure and Success
Chapter 10: Speaking and Influencing
Chapter 11: It Is What It Is Not
Chapter 12: Giving Back


Philosophy is this author’s guidepost; he opines that “…philosophy provides the mental tools to handle most situations.” (p.5) He is also of the belief that while philosophy teaches us how to handle most people, sales skills teach us “…how to get what we want from those individuals.” (p.7)

Along with the maxims of Stoicism and Taoism, there are a number of everyday references, from a wide range of sources, that he believes project managers can add to their arsenals of tools and techniques to bring their projects in on time and on budget.  He discusses the 80/20 rule and removing emotions from decision making; identifies and explains a variety of biases with which we deal; the importance of keeping things simple; methods of critical thinking with de Bono’s Six Thinking Hats; and the importance of being human and the importance of recognition. Most project managers can draw from these lessons.


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About the Reviewer

Patt Chowdhury

North Texas, USA




Patt Chowdhury, Managing Principal and Consultant at Patt Chowdhury Advisors LLC, is a marketing executive and cross-functional senior manager with extensive experience in program and project management, marketing operations, product management, process development and information technology at iconic Fortune 500 brands in the information technology and travel and transportation industries. She is an adjunct faculty member at the University of Dallas Gupta College of Business where she teaches marketing and management courses in the MBA and MS programs. Patt is a Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM®) and a Six Sigma Black Belt. She is a member of the PMI Dallas Chapter where she serves as Director, Lunch and Learn Program Series.

Patt can be contacted at [email protected]


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.  If you are an author or publisher of a project management-related book, and would like the book reviewed through this program, please contact [email protected].