Project Management or not

Do you ever have one of those conversations?

You know, the kind where you walk away asking yourself the question – which one of us is crazy?

I just remembered one from my past contracting job.

It went something like this:

Me: So, I’m finding that my role throughout this project seems to be changing into more of a project manager role. I developed the schedule and now I’m maintaining it. I follow up with all the players and ensure that we fully understand the requirements and meet them in each phase of the project.  I’m not doing any design and just wanted to make you aware that perhaps we should call this a project manager role.

Boss Guy: Well, you are called an instructional designer and as an instructional designer you are supposed to be providing feedback on the actual product at the different phases of development.

Me: Yes, I’m doing all that, but I’m finding that the bulk of my job is the project management portion.

Boss Guy: Well, you aren’t really project management. You are the point of contact on the reviewer team. So, as I see it, you are managing the contractors and the other instructional designers on the project ensuring that they meet the deliverable. And, you are managing the schedule as well. So, you are really managing the project.

Me: (Blank Stare) Uh, OK. Well, we’ll talk more about this later.

Apparently, “project management” is different than “managing the project.”

See, it is all in how you say it…apparently.

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