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Creating a Climate for Project Success

Pedro Serrador, Andrew Gemino, Blaize Horner Reich


Project Success is known to be influenced by many individual factors: organizational, technical and psychological/social. In this paper, we build on organization and IS theory to propose a second-order factor called Climate for Project Success. Climate is a useful concept in that, unlike culture, it is comprised of elements that a project manager can influence. Three dimensions (top management support, sufficient resources, and willingness to adapt) are identified and tested to measure their ability to predict different aspects of project success. Results of a regression analysis of data from 449 projects showed that Climate for Project Success was a significant and strong predictor of both Stakeholder Success (R² =.346, p=.000) and Budget/Time success (R² =.154, p=.000). Top Management Support and Willingness to Adapt positively influenced Stakeholder Success; Top Management Support positively influenced Budget/Time Success. Interestingly, Budget Flexibility, an element within the Sufficient Resources dimension, was negatively related to both Stakeholder and Budget/Time Success. Further ANOVA testing identified variables with weaker but significant influence on Project Success.

We conclude that Climate is a useful academic and practitioner concept and research could identify additional dimensions to predict Budget/Time Success. Organizations that wish to improve their project success should focus on developing a Climate which includes senior management support, stakeholder engagement, fully dedicated teams, support for agile methods, frequent meetings with product owners and a good team attitude toward accepting changes.


Project Management; Project Success; Organisational Climate


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