Antonio Nieto Rodriguez, HBR Author, PMI Fellow and Past Chair

Antonio Nieto Rodriguez, HBR Author, PMI Fellow, and Past Chair

Author of the Harvard Business Review Project Management Handbook, the featured HBR article The Project Economy Has Arrived, and four other books, Antonio is the creator of concepts such as the Project Economy and the Project Manifesto.



Our guest rightly explained, “A project is something that has a start and an end, and with that, you want to change something, you want to solve a big problem as smaller problems do not need projects.” 

Our guest for this episode of The Brand Called You, Antonio Nieto Rodriguez is a world expert in Project Management. He is also an author. One of his books titled, ‘Project Management Handbook’ is an HBR approved writing.

He is the founder and the former Chairman of ‘Projects and Company’. He has also co-founded the Strategy Implementation Institute. Antonio is also the creator of concepts like ‘Project Economy’ and ‘Project Manifesto’.

According to Antonio, the field of project management does not get much attention from senior leaders and innovators. People do not understand the fundamentals of project management, instead, they just run after strategy.

Antonio says that he has been fighting to make people understand the basics of project management so that they can use it in their professional careers as well as in their personal lives.

Antonio believes that project management is all about creating value. It is not just financial, but to make a better world.

What does Antonio mean by his statement of transforming project management in one of the central issues on every CEO’s 2030 agenda?

Antonio tells us that one of the major challenges he comes across is that many companies work on too many projects simultaneously. The CEOs of those companies are many times not even aware of how many projects are running.

According to the Harvard Business Review’s Chief Editor, projects are a company’s future. Antonio says that the CEOs need to work on their future.

They need to create value, master projects and they need to change every fundamental in their organizational structure from competencies to rewarding systems. Antonio suggests that CEOs to change their organizations from a hierarchical structure to a more flat organization.

Determining accountability for Project Management

Determining accountability in a more hierarchical or traditional organizational structure is easier according to Antonio, as they have department heads and one person responsible. However, in the new era, accountability is shared.

He says that there is a misconception in Project Management that the executive is accountable, whereas the Project Manager in delivering the project. However, Antonio believes that if you have a great project manager, that person should feel accountable for delivering the value and not just the project.

The link between strategy and project management

Antonio says that strategy and project management are two sides of the same coin. In his opinion, strategy and project management are connected fundamentally.

However, talking about another misconception in the field of project management, Antonio says that some people believe that strategy is all about project management. One definitely needs a strategy in projects but one should never forget that it also has a lot of people working on the day-to-day activities of the business.

Summing up, Antonio says that the projects are the action to deliver the new strategies, and that is the biggest connection between the two.

How can we use Project Management techniques in managing our personal lives?

Antonio says that engagement in a particular project is a challenging issue. He believes that if you have people who are hungry for a project, that project has more chances to succeed. Many times, people are just appointed for a project, without them being really interested in the work.

So Antonio advises the senior management to ask for volunteers for a project rather than appointing them straight away. When people volunteer for a project, they are already feeling connected to it, and if nobody feels a connection, don’t launch the project as it will not turn out well.

Likewise, if at home you are willing to engage in a personal project and none of your family members seem interested, the project is not a good idea.

About the book, ‘Harvard Business Review – Project Management Handbook’

After publishing two books in 2019, Antonio was not planning to write another book for at least five years. However, destiny wanted something different. 

Antonio found that the Harvard Business Review’s book on Project Management was a decade old and wasn’t relevant today. So he was pitching them to get another book on this topic.

Understanding his words, the Harvard Business Review asked Antonio to write a book for Project Management. This is how Antonio started writing the Project Management Handbook. He says that he wanted to simplify project management and used his large network to know more about the topic and was finally able to write the book.


Author of the Harvard Business Review Project Management Handbook, the featured HBR article The Project Economy Has Arrived, and four other books, Antonio is the creator of concepts such as the Project Economy and the Project Manifesto.

His research and global impact in modern management have been recognized by Thinkers50. Fellow and Former Chairman of the Project Management Institute, he is the founder of Projects&Co and co-founder of the Strategy Implementation Institute.

He is a member of Marshall Goldsmith 100 coaches. You can follow Antonio through his LinkedIn Newsletter – Lead Projects Successfully and website.

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