Interview with Olivier Lazar


Value Creation Is the Core of Management

Interview with Olivier Lazar

Managing Partner & COO
Palatine Group / Management Worlds

Interviewed by Yu Yanjuan
Journalist, Project Management Review: PMR (China)


Introduction to the interviewee

Olivier Lazar, PMP, PgMP, PfMP, PMI-PBA, PMI-RMP, PMI-SP, PMI-ACP, CAPM, is currently the Managing Partner & COO of the Palatine Group / Management Worlds.

Olivier has maintained his competencies through a continuous path marked by the singular achievement of holding each of 8 PMI certifications. His expertise includes Project, Program and Portfolio Management, Organizational Architecture, Change Management, Organizational transformation, Strategy.

Olivier held various Board positions in the PMI Switzerland Chapter, including President in 2014. He sits currently on the Board of Directors of the PMI Educational Foundation (PMIEF).

Olivier has had numerous publications and presentations, has contributed to recent editions of several PMI Standards, and sat at the core committee for the upcoming PMI Risk Management Standard.

As a distinguished expert in the fields of Program, Project, Portfolio Management and Organizational Development, Olivier consults, trains and speaks at events across the globe. He is the author of the book “The Four Pillars of Portfolio Management” published in 2018 by Taylor & Francis.




Part I: Professional Journey

Q1.   Please use several phrases to introduce yourself as a PM professional to readers.

Olivier Lazar:  I’m a citizen of the world. Originally French, I live between Switzerland and the USA and I work globally. I’ve been involved in project management for the past 20 years or so in various industries, countries and contexts. Even if I’ve managed projects and programs for a long time, my main focus is now to develop effective working environments, support my clients in their transitions and transformations towards the creation of value for their stakeholders. I have a background in electronic engineering, but also a Master’s degree in Project Management and an MBA with a major in strategy. I’ve always tried to keep my personal development up-to-date and I hold all of the current PMI certificates, and I’m working currently on expending my scope with new challenges.

Q2.  As a member of the PMI Educational Foundation Leadership Society, you are actively promoting PM as a skill for life. Do you use PM skills in your personal life?

Lazar:   Project Management as a skill for life is a strong statement. It means that in fact what is often considered as a professional framework is underlying in all aspects of our daily lives. If we look at the definition of project management competences as described by PMI in its Talent Triangle, it’s said that PM is the combination of organizational skills, leadership competences and strategic awareness. We use these skills in any initiative, activity or endeavor we undertake. The Foundation is striving to bring these competences to youth to enhance their potential in harnessing the opportunities presented to them and taking control of their lives.

Indeed I use many of the same tools and techniques and approaches in my personal life to organize and prioritize, to define my personal objectives and my personal strategy, to interact efficiently with the people in my environment and seize my own opportunities.

Q3.   Having been in this profession for over 20 years, how will you conclude your 20-year journey? What are the driving factors that make you stay in this field for so long? What are the things that you are most proud of?

Lazar:   First, I hope being far from a conclusion. I wish it’s only the beginning of the journey.

It’s important to understand that Project Management is actually just a tool, supporting the achievement of one’s own objectives. I hope that I’m able to bring some ease and clarity to people in their working environment and in their lives, which will allow them to do the same for others and unleash the potential of any group of individuals or organization to create value for the society. I believe it’s the purpose of existence to create value, to enhance our environment, our lives and the ones of others. An organization’s real survival factor is its ability to create value for the people within it and surrounding it.

I’m proud of my work and contributions when I see I’ve been able to influence others positively. Horace Mann said, “Be ashamed to die until you have achieved a victory for humanity.” I keep that sentence in my email signature as a reminder. We all have really the power to build a better world. Isn’t that the aim any of us should pursue?

Part : Training and Certification

Q4.   From the recommendations on LinkedIn, I notice that your PM training course is quite popular and impressive. What are your secrets?


To read entire interview, click here


Editor’s note: This interview was first published in PMR, Project Management Review magazine, China.  It is republished here with the permission of PMR. The PM World Journal maintains a cooperative relationship with PMR, periodically republishing works from each other’s publications. To see the original interview with Chinese introduction, visit PMR at http://www.pmreview.com.cn/english/

How to cite this interview: PMR (2019). Value Creation Is the Core of Management: Interview with Olivier Lazar; Project Management Review; republished in the PM World Journal, Vol. VIII, Issue V, June. Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/pmwj82-Jun2019-Yanjuan-Lazar-Interview.pdf



About the Interviewer


Yu Yanjuan

Beijing, China



Yu Yanjuan, Bachelor’s Degree, graduated from the English Department of Beijing International Studies University (BISU) in China. She is now an English-language journalist and editor working for Project Management Review Magazine and website. In the past, she has worked as a journalist and editor for China Manned Space Agency website and Student English Times. She once worked part-time as English teacher in training centers. For work contact, she can be reached via email yuyanjuan2005@163.com or Linkedin https://www.linkedin.com/in/yanjuan-yu-76b280151/.