Is project management becoming a commodity?

What do you think, is project management becoming a commodity?

I am a member on numerous online groups related to project management. There is a huge focus on certifications, PMP being the most popular but others as well like ACP, Agile, PRINCE2, RMP and numerous others. We see advertisement such as:

  • “this course enable you to achieve the PMP” or
  • “in this five days course you will learn ALL aspects of project management” or
  • “This course will help you master project management”
  • etc.

Then since some of these certifications require re-certifications you will see ads like:

  • “30 PDUs for 39$”, or
  • “PDU full package for $99”
  • etc.

Then the output of these courses and workshops could be PMPs, PRINCE2, or other achievement or renewal of these certificates – but does that mean these people can truly manage a project? In some cases these are senior project managers and highly experienced but in other cases these people have never managed a project. Maybe they have been technical people or engineers doing technical work on a project but not “directing and leading” projects.

In other words, it is like shopping and buying vegetables and meat in the market. Successful purchasing or raw food materials does not make one a cook. Following a receive may help make a cook but not a chef.

To conclude, let us go back to the original question: have project management become a commodity?

Let us add a few questions.

  • If it has become a commodity – how do we get out of it?
  • If not, why do you think so?

Looking for your opinions