I can see some project managers who worked as engineers and programmers in the past suddenly device impractical and insane plans when they become managers. Do they lose sanity even after worked so many years as engineers and programmers??

Do some stop thinking in programmers shoes when they become managers even though they were programmers for more than a decade,.?

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    As currently written, this is a rant rather than a question about a specific problem or issue that you're facing. Please improve the question by removing the invective and adding some additional detail about a single concrete issue.
    – Todd A. Jacobs
    Sep 1, 2013 at 16:41
  • Sure Actually this is Generic problem i heard many collegues talk about...sorry about if it looks like negative emotional way..let me see how can i refine Sep 1, 2013 at 16:45
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    Welcome to PMSE! I've taken a stab at rephrasing the title to get at what it sounds like you're asking, which is a pm issue that often comes up. I've also re opened the question. Feedback? Sep 16, 2013 at 12:29

1 Answer 1


By "impractical," I am assuming you mean an aggressive / optimistic cost and or schedule to complete the project.

There are other objectives and problems with which managers must cope that the programmers, engineers, trades, laborers, and technicians do not. These other things create a perspective on the business of which others may not even be aware.

A few examples:

1) If you're selling services, you have to win the project. Estimates live on a range of possible results. Estimating on the fat side of that range is a nice, safe place to be and puts a lot of likelihood in your hands that you can achieve the scope within that fat budget and schedule. However, fat is expensive and you are likely to lose the work. Being practical may mean no work.

2) There are a host of estimating biases that a manager needs to sift through. Optimism bias, anchoring, recency, selective to name a few. This makes what is practical and impractical much less obvious.

3) As a manager, you learn quickly how amazing it is to watch the team meet a challenge. Your team screams it is going to take 3 months to finish this task; you challenge them with 1.5 months and watch the team either hit it or come very very close. This attacks this notion of Parkinson's Law or Student Syndrome, where a long runway means every inch will be used before takeoff, for no other reason than it is there. Forcing a constraint on a high performing team enables innovation and problem solving they would not have otherwise even tried. And those innovations will be used next time and that will set your team even further apart from your competitors.

It is another way of thinking, being a manager and leader.

  • By Impractical i mean insane.. for example dividing undividable task to two person To reduce Time...Practically If another person even do the task., the second person should redo to allign it to his part.. Sep 1, 2013 at 16:19
  • What really happened is your quality or scope got cut to match. You just don't know it yet.
    – Joshua
    Nov 8, 2016 at 0:01
  • That assumes the PM had no controls to monitor such things. I'm sure that happens sometimes, but not all the time. If and when you begin to lead things, you'll change your point of view quickly. Nov 8, 2016 at 12:09

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