In the past seventy-five years since the Manhattan Project in World War II, there have been tremendous advances in the way project management has been conducted resulting in increases in performance, deliverability, repeatability, and consistency in delivering results. This increase in performance has been the result of the introduction of computing, information, and intelligent systems, the development and use of information and knowledge systems for decision making, and the evolution of cognitive science processes for human performance. Indeed, I have essayed about many of these cognitive processes in this collection of essays since 2010.
In addition, the introduction of the Program or Portfolio Management Office (PMO) as a best practice in larger, more complex organizations has enhanced the organization’s ability to juggle huge demands in project delivery and organizational success. Demands on PMOs have rendered them essential to overall business success and growth of business volume.
This essay focuses on topics from cognitive science which I have written about in the totality of my essay collection. Cognitive science has emerged in the past fifty years as a key component in the success of project managers to manage complex, multidimensional projects successfully.
The latin root ‘Cogn-’ means ‘to learn.’ So cognitive science deals with processes that relate to learning, knowledge, and how knowledge is assembled and utilized. This includes :
- Attention (and osmosis)
- Creativity (creative subconscious)
- Language and linguistics (use of ‘milestones,’ ‘stakeholders,’ etc.)
- Problem Solving (and risk management, innovation and design thinking)
- Reasoning (and resilience)
- Perception (lessons learned)
- Memory (knowledge management)
- Intelligence (numerous topics)
- Reflection (lessons learned)
- Communication (and best practices, benchmarking)
To see more blog posts related to the specific topics listed above, you can search the site using the keywords in the above parentheticals.
You will recognize many of these topics immediately if you have been following my blog since 2010. The simple fact is that the cognitive sciences increased the overall capacity of project managers and the PMO to meet the challenges of modern business and its complexities.
In summary, the cognitive sciences field developed as a break from behaviorism in psychological thought. It has had a tremendous impact on the advancement of project management and its contribution to modern society.
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