The Importance of Taking Ownership of a Project

The project owner is the person or group that starts a project, finances it, and benefits from its outputs. In particular, they are in charge of defining the project’s scope, the “What?” and the “Why?” They are also responsible for coordination with functional leadership to promote cooperation. The owner may also be referred to as the Lead or Champion and the importance of taking ownership of the project.

Taking ownership is not just working on a project; it means making it your mission to see it through. It also shows you’re willing to do what it takes to get the job done. That means building trust and facilitating communication between team members.

Owning a project is about being the mission leader but also a problem solver and doer. You want to project the attitudes and behaviors you’d like everyone in your team to have.

As we’ll get to shortly, you want each individual to feel a bit like a confident entrepreneur in how they approach the overall task. Everyone should have a sense of purpose and control, of having the power to help the group achieve something special.

Identification and Definition of the Project

A good project comes from good problem identification. Project identification is a repeatable process for approving candidate projects within an organization. Project identification involves a review of alternative approaches for addressing a set of development problems. This process requires a significant amount of time and resources and the importance of taking ownership of a project.

In practice, project ideas often result from the identification of problems or constraints in the development process. Within these minimum and maximum constraint limits, a range of technical alternatives may be explored.

Project definition is a process in which all aspects of a proposed project are explored. The definition is essential to secure stakeholder buy-in and acceptance. The project definition phase’s main tasks are to set clear project goal(s) and create a substantial basis for building a project schedule.

The importance of taking ownership of a project

Taking ownership of a project has many benefits, including:

1. Builds a Sense of Belonging

You want your employees to feel comfortable at work. That’s because belonging is what allows employees to feel like they can be their authentic selves. There is evidence to suggest that a focus on project ownership can help frame inclusion initiatives in the workplace. Project ownership is especially important for employees who often don’t feel included at the office. When employees are genuinely included, they believe that the organization truly cares for them.

Besides, your firm’s reputation benefits from a sense of belonging. That’s because ownership of the project can inspire them to take it a step further and genuinely advocate that your brand is exceptional.

2. Aligns Work, Purpose and Goals

Do your employees know what they’re working toward?. If not, then your employees might not feel personally motivated to achieve your organization’s objectives. Fortunately, project ownership gets everyone on the same page and pushing in the same direction. It also allows management to create a company culture around the mission, vision, values, and goals.

Project ownership enables staff in every department to make decisions with the long or short-term target in mind.

As a result, each individual will know exactly how their job contributes to the organization’s overall success.

Importance of Taking Ownership of a Project

3. Prevents Micromanagement

Micromanagement is a management style that is demoralizing and counter-intuitive. In many cases, this occurs when supervisors don’t realize what their roles are. Project ownership lets you give your people the space they need to succeed and learn.

The result is that employees will work hard and not take advantage of the lack of supervision.

Project ownership removes the need to monitor your employees’ movement and actions or demand progress reports from them too frequently. Consequently, you’ll be able to build an environment where employees seek accountability and act as owners of the business.

4. Helps Managers Get Their Team’s Input

Every person’s input is valuable; otherwise, they shouldn’t be on the team. Similarly, ideas don’t become a reality unless they are voiced. Project ownership creates a culture of open engagement and ensures your team that their opinions are valued.

Moreover, it encourages the members of your team to participate by inviting their suggestions fully.

Hearing messages from down the ranks is critical to your organization’s success. The key is to give your team the right conditions to develop and grow. By implementing project ownership in your organization, you’ll create an environment where everyone feels comfortable and motivated to contribute. Doing that as a team leader means charting a path to that future success.

5. Makes Your Team Feel Like Owners

Business owners dream of having employees who can think like entrepreneurs. That’s because this type of employee sees the company as an extension of themselves. However, they can’t think like owners if they’re treated like employees. Thus, you need to find a way to help your team internalize the need to do a task and the importance of taking ownership of the project.

One of the key drivers of ownership is a sense of project ownership. Project ownership creates employees who are willing to look in the mirror and examine their personal contributions. This culture of personal accountability is the single most potent characteristic of project management.

What is the Hierarchy of Project Management?

Effective implementation of project ownership requires a proper understanding of the hierarchy of project management. The hierarchy of project management includes:

1. Team Members

Project team members are mainly employees who work on various stages of the project. They are the people who will execute the project plan and turn the abstract into practical. Their purpose is to achieve a specific business task or goal. The project team can contain internal staff as well as outside vendors.

A project team member is responsible for contributing to overall project objectives and specific team deliverables. However, disruptive environments are a common characteristic of project teams.

2. Project Manager

A project manager usually looks after a set of related project(s). Project leaders communicate with team members and connect daily tasks to larger goals. They are the central focus point for all the communications that go on surrounding the project. The project leader engages the team, motivates them and takes care of their needs.

There are some situations when the project manager needs to be directive. This is important because a team leader is nothing without team members. It also means that project managers can assign tasks to team members, create to-do lists, track progress and collaborate.

3. Project Sponsor

The project sponsor is the person or group who owns the project. He or she provides business context. expertise and guidance to the project. Project sponsors do not manage the day-to-day operations of the project.

A project sponsor is an essential link between a project team and other stakeholders. The sponsor authorizes the necessary resources and makes decisions related to finances. They can also serve as a spokesperson for those who do not know about the project. Ultimately a successful project sponsor is a leader who is able to work across corporate and functional boundaries.

4. Product Owner

There is some overlap between the role of the project manager and the position of the product owner. First of all, both the product owner and project managers are in management roles. The project owner is typically the head of the business unit receiving the product.

The Product Owner role is a much younger one, born from the Agile approach. Different product owners will have different sets of incentives and priorities.  In general, the owner is initially responsible for all of the project risks. It is also the responsibility of the product owner to accept the effects of the work.

Getting Started

The world is full of resources that can help you to control and navigate negotiations. Here’s your first step.

Earn a certificate from UC Davis Graduate School of Management. You can develop and validate your skills through the University of Dayton Project Management’s Practical Skills and Applications program. This program will help you craft a negotiation strategy and navigate cross-cultural communication. Your certificate of completion from this top-ranked U.S. university will be proof of your gained knowledge and will provide more confidence going into every business interaction.

If you’ve been seeking self-paced professional development. it’s time to enroll in the University of Dayton Project Management’s Practical Skills and Applications program, in collaboration with GetSmarter. For more tips tricks and opportunities like these, visit GetSmarter online or contact us today.

Fawad Malik

Fawad Malik Technology geek by heart, blogger by passion, and founder of, He regularly explores ideas and ways how advanced technology helps individuals, brands and businesses survive and thrive in this competitive landscape. He tends to share the latest tech news, trends, and updates with the community built around Nogentech.

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