Collective Resolve


Conduct that tackles failures

of productivity and growth



By Martin Price

United Kingdom


Delay and uncertainty regularly interrupt the progress of an enterprise; large and small. All rests on the players’ continual planning as well as their response to unanticipated events.  Any new course of action needs to recognise new approaches, vested interests and the players’ conduct. Their own ‘mix of minds’ (see below) Is a principal asset that is typically squandered.  Such neglect amounts to serious weakness.

Very few organisations adopt a working practice known as ‘Collective Resolve’ despite its application in celebrated successes.  The prospect for most UK organisations applying Collective Resolve is however very limited. The article reveals why this is.

Project players can function together extraordinarily well through Collective Resolve. It is an arrangement enabled by the close engagement of players, their joint working, high expectations and thoroughness. When groups work interactively and with synergy, outstanding performance and speed can be achieved. Such working arrangements have made a leading contribution to energising the Japanese economy and others across SE Asia over the last 40 years.

Business at the leading edge  

The quest for innovation and smart decision-making has in the past been the role of a few.  However, in recent times in managing change, leaders have come to engage with a wider range of players. They have become more inclusive in their decision-making: firms involve further interests and employees in managing, governments seek the views of the electorate and football sides turn increasingly to team play.

The demands and complexity of circumstances today call for greater diligence and the closer involvement of all stakeholders. We learn from the leader of the GCHQ’s Event Management Centre, that in responding to a complex cyber-attack, they form a project as a ‘mix of minds’ – a group of disparate specialist code breakers that include those psychologically disposed to novel, rapid and creative thinking. Together they seek imaginative ways of thinking and interacting.  (Ref. The BBC Today programme Guest Editor 29/12/2022). Evidently, the players’ vigour, lateral thinking, diversity of approach and imagination are recognised to be crucial to the group’s success.

We are left to ponder how GCHQ then deploys this ‘mix of minds’ for the work required to reach a useful outcome.  Success depends on players’ conduct collectively, as well as the conduct of individuals.

There are no universal formulae for managing an enterprise, although there are many tools and techniques available to assist.  Progress is made from the interpretation, ingenuity and tenacity of the Key Players – those that bring the greatest contribution to conduct and decision-making.

The Role of Key Players  

Key Players steer the course of a project. In accommodating its circumstances and uncertainties, continual re-thinking and the re-direction required. Key Players do not restrict themselves to orderly procedures: rather they share together the quest to discover productive arguments and their resolution. Direction lies in the aggregation of the Key Players’ comprehension, determining direction, progress and expediency.


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How to cite this article: Price, M. (2023).  Collective Resolve – Conduct that tackles failures of productivity and growth, PM World Journal, Vol. XII, Issue IV, April.  Available online at https://pmworldjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/04/pmwj128-Apr2023-Price-collective-resolve-advisory.pdf

About the Author

Martin Price

United Kingdom


Martin Price is widely known as a speaker and writer and for his fresh ideas on human and organisational behaviour so crucial to the success of managing a project. He was Director of Professional Development for PMIs UK Chapter and for six years hosted PMIs monthly UK Chapter meetings in London.

Martin worked as an electrical engineer before spending 15 years as a personnel manager and then as a change management consultant with PA Consulting Group. There he enabled and supported the transformation of large and small businesses.

He is MD of EngagementWorks, a consultancy supporting organisations in their quest for developing high performing project organisations. He is the author of the book “The Single-Minded Project.”

Based in Northampton, UK, Martin can be contacted at mprice@engagementworks.com.  For more information or to follow Martin, visit www.engagementworks.com.