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Bringing project and change management roles into sync

Katalin Pádár (Department of Management and Corporate Economics, Budapesti Muszaki es Gazdasagtudomanyi Egyetem, Budapest, Hungary)
Béla Pataki (Department of Management and Corporate Economics, Budapesti Muszaki es Gazdasagtudomanyi Egyetem, Budapest, Hungary)
Zoltán Sebestyén (Department of Management and Corporate Economics, Budapesti Muszaki es Gazdasagtudomanyi Egyetem, Budapest, Hungary)

Journal of Organizational Change Management

ISSN: 0953-4814

Article publication date: 14 August 2017

Abstract

Purpose

Change management (CM) and project management (PM) literatures examine the key roles (change agent, project manager, project or change sponsor) played during projects or changes only from their respective points of view. They do so even in cases where projects and changes occur at the same time – or are so-called change projects. In such cases, effective management should utilize both scientific fields’ bodies of knowledge (BoK). The purpose of this paper is to unfold how and in which domain(s) typical roles of the two disciplines correspond to each other.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper is a systematic, bi-disciplinary meta-review that simultaneously studies relevant literature on roles performed during projects and changes. The common domain of CM and PM was identified; the systematic review and comparison of role definitions followed.

Findings

This paper examines and illustrates the correspondence of 7 CM and 14 PM roles; e.g., “sponsor” refers to the same role and “change agent” and “project manager” are corresponding ones, referring to the same role up to a certain degree.

Research limitations/implications

This paper does not provide an exhaustive overview of various instances of different role (and stakeholder) interpretations.

Practical implications

Findings should facilitate the better management of changes that require CM-type and PM-type capabilities and actions.

Originality/value

As a result of the meta-review, two CM roles were re(de)fined. Linking PM and CM roles provides common ground on which practitioners of both fields can rely. A step-by-step tool for the identification of such cases in practice, when both types of roles should be played and both BoK can be utilized complementarily, was developed.

Keywords

Citation

Pádár, K., Pataki, B. and Sebestyén, Z. (2017), "Bringing project and change management roles into sync", Journal of Organizational Change Management, Vol. 30 No. 5, pp. 797-822. https://doi.org/10.1108/JOCM-07-2016-0128

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited