‘Project managers’ collaboration key’

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Acting Head of Project Management Itumeleng Letśolo
Acting Head of Project Management Itumeleng Letśolo

Rethabile Pitso

PROJECT managers have been urged to share skills and ideas with each other and stop trying to “reinvent the wheel”.

This was said during a two-day project management workshop which ended yesterday in Maseru and initiated by the Central Bank of Lesotho (CBL).

The seminar was attended by project managers from the Water and Sewerage Company (WASCO), Lesotho Revenue Authority (LRA), First National Bank (FNB), Standard Bank, Caritas Lesotho, Lesotho National Development Corporation (LNDC) and World Vision among others.

According to CBL Acting Head of Project Management, Itumeleng Letšolo, the apex bank initiated the conference to facilitate the sharing of skills and experiences.

She said the workshop was organised after the realisation that many projects were not coming to fruition.

“After this seminar, we intend to establish a network of project management practitioners so they can share ideas with one another,” said Ms Letšolo.

“The CBL has come to the realisation that practitioners are working in isolation, which in many cases has resulted in their failure to execute projects.

“We want to foster a culture of sharing experiences to avoid trying to reinvent the wheel by implementing policies or ideas that have already failed elsewhere.”

She said collaboration was the way forward in addressing Lesotho’s project management challenges.

“We have identified numerous practitioners who are experts in their fields so they can collaborate to ensure the country’s project management challenges are addressed.

“There is no need to import practitioners to manage our projects when we already have so many local experts. It is time that we take matters into our hands,” Ms Letšolo said, adding that they were working on making the workshop an annual event.

In her remarks, LRA Acting Manager Programme ‘Mannyane Toloane echoed the sentiment, saying project management practitioners needed to support each other to attain success.

“Project management involves many technical stages and requires relevant skills that are applicable to people from various disciplines,” she said.

“A project manager has to be prepared to steer their team which consists of people from various disciplines in one direction.

“We, therefore, need the support of shared experiences from others who have done similar projects.”

For her part, Caritas Lesotho National Director Relebohile Mabote said the role of project managers was important since they were attentive to detail.

“Project managers are key in ensuring that the scope of work is followed to detail by the various teams and to ensure quality is maintained. He or she plays an oversight role to ensure the project eventually culminates into the desired outcome,” said Ms Mabote.

“Of the many phases involved in a project, the execution phase is of utmost importance. Among other activities, the project manager has to conduct a scope control, schedule control, budget control, and quality control as well as managing the team. “

She added: “He or she has to manage the team’s performance to ensure the implementation of the set goals. During implementation of projects, Caritas has to ensure that stakeholders, including communities and funders, receive feedback regarding a particular project.”

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