Project Management Quotes to Inspire You

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The author spent the first part of her career working in IT and IT Project Management in the oil industry and investment banking on complex global projects involving the management of outsourced project teams. She now runs a digital marketing company with particular expertise in technical SEO and Content Marketing.


Working ten hour days allows you to fall behind twice as fast as you could working five hour days. – Issac Assimov

Trying to manage a project without project management is like trying to play a football game without a game plan. – K. Tate

A project without a critical path is like a ship without a rudder. – D. Meyer

Running a project without a WBS is like going to a strange land without a roadmap. – J. Phillips

If, on your team, everyone’s input is not encouraged, valued, and welcome, why call it a team? – Woody Williams

If you have never recommended cancelling a project, you haven’t been an effective project manager. – Woody Williams

Good judgment comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgment. – Fred Brooks

It is always easier to talk about change than to make it. – Alvin Toffler

Project management is like juggling three balls – time, cost and quality. Program management is like a troupe of circus performers standing in a circle, each juggling-three balls and swapping balls from time to time. – G. Reiss

It must be considered that there is nothing more difficult to carry out nor more doubtful of success nor more dangerous to handle than to initiate a new order of things – Machiavelli

A project is complete when it starts working for you, rather than you working for it. – Scott Allen

Any Idiot can point out a problem …. A leader is willing to do something about it! – Tony Robbins

Project management is … The art of creating the illusion that any outcome is the result of a series of predetermined, deliberate acts when, in fact, it was dumb luck. –  Harold Kerzner

If it is not documented, it doesn’t exist … As long as information is retained in someone’s head, it is vulnerable to loss.  – Louis Fried



‘Don’t use a sledgehammer to crack a walnut’, but equally don’t agree important things informally where there is a chance of a disagreement later over what was agreed.  – Colin Bentley


Why do so many professionals say they are project managing, when what they are actually doing is fire fighting?  – Colin Bentley



“Get the right people. Then no matter what all else you might do wrong after that, the people will save you. That’s what management is all about.”  – Tom DeMarco


No matter how good the team or how efficient the methodology, if we’re not solving the right problem, the project fails – Woody Williams


The P in PM is as much about ‘people management’ as it is about ‘project management’.  – Cornelius Fichtner

If everyone is thinking alike, someone isn’t thinking.  – General George Patton Jr


Know when to cut your losses if necessary. Don’t let your desire to succeed be the enemy of good judgment. – Jerry Manas

Projects progress quickly until they become 90% complete; then remain at 90% complete forever.  – Edwards, Butler, Hill & Russell


The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man – George Bernard Shaw


Tell me and I’ll forget, show me and I may remember, involve me and I’ll understand – Chinese Proverb


Change is not made without inconvenience, even from worse to better – Samuel Johnson


If an IT project works the first time, it was a very small and simple project. – Cornelius Fitchner

“Assumption is the mother of all screw-ups” Wethern’s Law of Suspended Judgement – Paul Duvall

“It’s not enough that we do our best; sometimes we have to do what’s required.” – Winston Churchill

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Project management has developed into a fully-fledged chartered profession since the granting of the Royal Charter in the UK to The Association for Project Management (APM) in 2017. Training courses for project managers were already available and highly popular to help people gain professional project management accreditation, but with this wider recognition of the profession it is now seen as a desirable career path for many. Whilst the APM has the coveted Royal Charter and continues to develop its APM PMQ (formerly the APMP) programmes, there are also other internationally recognised qualifications that continue to be highly regarded such as PMP and PRINCE2.

Organisations have become increasingly project-focused in this era of rapidly emerging new technologies and they value the expertise that comes with experienced and fully qualified project teams and managers. By investing in their project management capability businesses can be confident of delivering their new projects in time and on budget more often and more successfully. Many major corporation are now training their people to have the right project management qualifications as well as relevant experience, through internal Learning & Development (L&D) programmes; or by using external project management training providers.

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