PMP Q&A – Section 7: Human Resources Management (81-90)

Section 7: Human Resources Management

The highest point of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is called:
A. Physiological satisfaction.
B. Attainment of survival.
C. Need for association.
D. Esteem.
Answer: D

This question is asking which of the FOLLOWING is the highest. Self-actualization is not listed, so the next best choice is esteem.
Source: PMP? Exam Prep Page: 333

Two team members are having a big disagreement over the type of computer hardware to use on the project.
Who should resolve the dispute?
A. Two members and their project manager
B. Project manager
C. Management
D. System supervisor
Answer: A
Those having the problem should resolve the problem. In this case, the two team members should work out the problem. Because it is impacting the project, the project manager needs to participate.
Source: PMP? Exam Prep Page: 328

The halo effect refers to the tendency to:
A. Promote from within.
B. Hire the best.
C. Move people into project management because they are good in their technical fields.
D. Move people into project management because they have had project management training.
Answer: C
Just because a person is good in his technical field does not mean he will also be a good project manager.
Source: PMP? Exam Prep Page: 321

The MOST common causes of conflict on a project are schedules, project priorities, and:
A. Personality.
B. Resources.
C. Cost.
D. Management.
Answer: B
Know the top four sources (schedules, project priorities, resources, and technical opinions) so you can answer questions such as this one. Don’t be fooled because "personality" is on the list. It is last.
Source: PMP? Exam Prep Page: 328

An obstacle to team building in a matrix organization is that the:
A. Team organization is technically focused.
B. Team members are borrowed resources and can be hard to motivate.
C. Teams are too centralized.
D. Teams are too large and therefore very hard to handle.
Answer: B
Team members are harder to motivate if their loyalty is to their functional organization rather than to the project team.
Source: PMP? Exam Prep Page: 28

The management theory that all people can direct their own efforts is:
A. Theory Y.
B. Herzberg’s theory.
C. Maslow’s hierarchy.
D. Theory X.
Answer: A
Know the difference between Theory X and Theory Y.
Source: PMP? Exam Prep Page: 333

The new project is exciting to both the project manager and the team. This is the project manager’s first assignment as project manager. The team has the feeling that they will be able to complete work that has never been tried before. There are 29 people contributing to the product description and the team consists of nine highly experienced experts in their field.
Part of the way through planning, three highly technical team members are disagreeing about the scope of two of the deliverables. One is pointing to the draft WBS and saying that two additional work packages should be added. Another is saying that a particular work package should not even be done. The third team member agrees with both of them. How should the project manager BEST deal with the conflict?
A. He should listen to the differences of opinion, determine the best choice, and implement that choice.
B. He should postpone further discussions, meet with each individual, and determine the best approach.
C. He should listen to the differences of opinion, encourage logical discussions, and facilitate an agreement.
D. He should help the team focus on agreeable aspects of their opinions and build unity by using relaxation techniques and common focus team building.
Answer: C
Do not get confused by the wordiness of the question. Ask yourself what is the best way to resolve any conflict and you can get the answer. Most of the situation is a distracter. Problem solving and compromising are the two most important conflict resolution techniques. Conflict management is a key general management skill.
Source: PMP? Exam Prep Page: 331

A project manager works in a company that has a matrix organizational structure. A server administrator is assigned to the project manager’s project team. The server administrator is not taking direction from the project manager and the delay in the server administrator’s activities is causing a negative variance to the schedule. The server administrator works for the director of server administration. Who is primarily responsible for solving this problem?
A. The project manager
B. The server administrator
C. The director of server administration
D. The sponsor
Answer: C
Performance issues are senior and functional management’s responsibility – usually the manager who supervises the resource.
Source: PMP? Exam Prep Page: 309

You are a project manager for a large electrical system implementation. One of your key people has started to miss deadlines and work quality is beginning to suffer as well. This person has participated in project planning, and in fine-tuning the earned value estimating, and developing the reward systems for the project.
You are confident that this person is well aware of the work deadlines and required quality specifications.
What action should you take?
A. Report the problem to the personnel or human resource department for corrective action.
B. Reassign some work to other team members until performance starts to improve.
C. Discuss the issue with the employee at the next team meeting and try to determine the factors impacting performance.
D. Escalate the situation to the employee’s functional manager and ask for assistance.
Answer: D
Choice A is inappropriate, since it is the functional manager’s responsibility. Choice B is not problem solving, it is more like avoidance or withdrawal, something that is not usually best. Choice C is a penalty, as it is discussed at a team meeting. By saying that "this person has participated in?", the question is saying that you as the project manager have done everything in your power already. There is even a reward system in place.
Therefore, it is time to ask for help from management. Functional management is responsible for addressing individual performance problems.
Source: PMP? Exam Prep Page: 309

A project team member has been having a big disagreement with another team member for over two months when the other team members become involved. The issues are complex, but you have specific experience in the area and know what needs to be done. The BEST choice would be to:
A. Make the decision yourself.
B. Strive for fair resolution of the issue.
C. Ask the other team members to stay out of the issue.
D. Bring the team together and work out the issue to a win-win solution.
Answer: B
Conflicts need to be resolved by those experiencing the problem, not the whole team. Choice C should be unnecessary, and does not solve the root cause. The question seems to lead one to think the project manager should solve it, but there is an even better answer. Without knowing the details of the problem,
choice B is a better choice than choice A.
Source: PMP? Exam Prep Page: 331