The tendency to train in a mechanistic way is high. There are 3 basic reasons, even though most knows it does not work as well as say customized courses.

1) Custom training is more expensive, even though I feel the upfront cost is more than offset by the value of custom training.  2) Mechanistic training is easier. Admittedly, my company’s certification training falls into this category. We have developed and used materials that simply works. The pass rate on our PfMP is perfect. So why change when the purpose of some training is passing standard exams.  3) Organization environment, especially with large and complex projects, is sufficient turbulent that the effectiveness of custom training is often difficult to measurable.

So while there are much truth to this article, the reality remains that training has its inherent limitations. For organizations interested to substantially improve their practices, training is only a part of the solution. There’s also coaching, advising, and consulting. Only when these are taken together and working with talented workforce can organization achieve substantial and sustainable improvements.

Te Wu’s comments on the below Colin Ellis article.

Colin Ellis for CIO writes:  I met with a client last week who told me she was sick of being sold the same project management development courses by training organisations.

“They’ve been selling it for 10 years,” she told me.  Her organisation has a nickname for these kinds of companies, ‘MOTS’, meaning ‘more of the same’, and the project failure rate was proof that what they sold didn’t work.

Back in 2005, organisations that wanted to reduce the costs of their projects and increase the certainty around their delivery turned to methods as a way of becoming more consistent.

“We need more consistency!” they demanded. “Here’s a silver bullet!” replied the training organisations.

Yet, in 2005 it became increasingly difficult to forecast the times and costs of technology projects (specifically) as the pace of change became too hard to keep up with.

Almost every week there was a new technology feature (and associated process) which customers liked the look of, leading to an expansion of the scope, which in turn caused projects to fail.

The blame was laid on project managers for not adequately controlling this and in some instances that was correct, but in others it was caused by a lack of understanding of what project management actually was and the value it offered.

In his 1999 book The Project 50, Tom Peters said, ‘the funny thing about project management books, is that they rarely talk about the work itself.’

These books talk about a utopian world where everyone understands what needs to be done and goes about it in the same way. This, of course, ignores the human element and if it wasn’t for people, projects would be great.

Fast forward back to today and organisations are still confused about how to develop their project management (PM) capability. A PMI Pulse of the Profession survey earlier this year found that only 45 per cent of organisations have plans in place to develop their project management talent, 5 per cent less than in 2014.

The situation is getting worse, not better and it’s time to change the way that project management talent is developed because, frankly, the 2005 approach didn’t work then and it still doesn’t work today.

So what does work?

Having worked with a number of organisations on developing their talent and improving their results, here are some pointers on where to start. A good project management training course will contain all of the elements in the diagram below and you shouldn’t settle for anything less.  SNIP, the article continues @ CIO, click here to continue reading…..