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communication and co-operation on projects between the project owner as principal and the project manager as agent
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business.
2004 (English)In: European Management Journal, ISSN 0263-2373, Vol. 22, no 3, 327-336 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Research shows the best project performance is obtained when there is high collaboration between client and project manager, and medium levels of structure, when the project manager and project owner work together in partnership, and the manager is empowered. Unfortunately, this is not how it happens on many projects. There is mistrust, even conflict, between owner and manager, and the owner sets tight constraints within which the manager must work. Project owners mouth partnership and empowerment, but implement conflict and tight control. In this paper, we offer the principal-agency relationship between client and project manager as one reason for this. However, we offer communication between the client and project manager as a way of reducing this problem. We suggest what communication the client needs from the project manager, and what communication the project manager needs from the client to minimize the impact of the principal-agency relationship. We report the results of an international study into communication needs on projects. We establish that the communication needs of project participants are best served by a mixture of formal and informal communication, and of written and verbal communication. We also establish that communication and emotion are closely linked on projects.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2004. Vol. 22, no 3, 327-336 p.
Keyword [en]
projects, communication, principal-agency theory, cooperation, empowerment, trust
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-17947DOI: doi:10.1016/j.emj.2004.04.010OAI: diva2:157620
Available from: 2007-02-02 Created: 2007-02-02 Last updated: 2011-01-12Bibliographically approved

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