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Video Series: Women in Project Management, Part One

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Voices on Project Management presents a six-part interview with Beth Partleton, PMP, PMI Board of Directors, on "Women in Project Management."

Beth's background spans three decades of project, portfolio and risk management, particularly in the area of capital projects. She headed Miller Brewing Company's PMO and served as senior project manager and functional project manager of architecture and civil engineering. She has been a certified Project Management Professional (PMP)® since 1991.

Beth is a strong advocate for the value of the project management profession not only for organizations but also for practitioners. "Women in Project Management" provides her perspective on how women are closing the gap in traditionally male-dominated fields.  

In part one, Beth shares her road to project management; her thoughts on the misconception that project management is a male-dominated profession; and the strides organizations have made in including women on project management teams as well as some candid observations on what still needs to be done.


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Dear Mary,

Thank you for writing in. I will try to answer your questions as best I can:

1) Unfortunately, we do not have direct data available at this moment that answers your question.

2) It is difficult to generalize an answer for this question. I believe women have an advantage in certain situations and a disadvantage in others. In typically male-dominated fields, women may have a slight disadvantage because the men may not be accustomed to having women on their teams and may be unfamiliar with how men and women communicate differently. At other times. women may have an advantage because they are usually more perceptive about emotional drivers and therefore are able to react more appropriately. I address this more fully in Part Four of Women in Project Management (http://blogs.pmi.org/blog/voices_on_project_management/2013/02/video-series-women-in-project-3.html).


Dear Beth,

I would like to ask you two questions:

1) Is there some statistic about how fast the women are reaching better levels of hierarchic at work after a PMP certification?

2) Because we think and feel in a different way that allow us for example: express our feeling and emotions in a better way than men, are you able to say that be a women in the project management world is more easy or more difficult?

It is possible to get some advises like: what we should do and we shouldn´t do as the new generation of PMP women.

Thanks for your time,


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