Posted by: kerrywills | October 27, 2017

Roles in the project game

Those who read my blogs know that I am a fan of basketball and I coach my son’s team. So to continue with the metaphor of projects as a basketball game, I believe there are four roles that people play on projects.

  1. Players – These are the people on the court actually playing the game and scoring the baskets (they do the work)
  2. Player/Coach – These are people who guide the teams but also contribute to the game (they lead but also do work)
  3. Coach – These people provide leadership and take accountability for the outcome, but do not play in the game (they don’t do work)
  4. Spectators – These are the people who watch the game who have opinions about how to play but neither coach nor play (they just show up with opinions)


Obviously the players are the most important people since they are the ones actually playing the game. I like to think of myself as a player/coach who provides guidance and leadership but who also does work to help the team and keep them focused. Coaches are classic management people who can provide guidance and be helpful but don’t always contribute to the game as much as they could. Lastly, we need to recognize how many spectators we have on our teams because, unlike basketball games, it is not always better to have stands full of people with opinions that may not be cheering on your team.


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