The Power of Project Leadership

 

BOOK REVIEW

Book Title: The Power of Project Leadership: 7 keys to help you transform from project manager to project leader
Author: Susanne Madsen
Publisher: KoganPage
List Price: $28.47
Format: Soft cover, 265 pages
Publication Date: January 2015
ISBN: 978-0-7494-7234-4
Reviewer: Muhammad Umar Tariq
Review Date: November 2018

 


 

Preface

The title of this book “The Power of Project Leadership” Tells us half of the idea for how we can transform a good project manager into Good project leader; it also tends to the requirement for administration in the present fast paced world with cutting edge and different comes. I expected a book about administration hypothesis anyway; what I got was an extraordinary sensible manual for truly doing initiative with bunches of stories, models and activities. Extraordinary book, incredible writing skills open door with the end goal to assess their authority and administration abilities. It Strengthen the commence that the present venture director is anticipated to attempt and support less. This Book was exceptionally clear, simple to study and offered numerous tips with the end goal to enhance your Project initiative aptitudes

Synopsis of Book’s Structure

The message all through the book is straightforward; the manner in which we are as venture directors are conveying ventures isn’t working. Project disappointments are high and it’s an extraordinary worry for our clients. (Section 2) portrays that how we can enhance our task administration aptitudes. Turning a camera on your administration abilities can be troublesome. Susanne’s methodology is deliberate and can encourage people to see their qualities and shortcomings reliably. The dialog about the enabling mindset is awesome. I believe that one in everything about key authority learnings is that you essentially will administration your own reaction to occasions and having an inspirational attitude will make propelled things less demanding to oversee.

(Part # 3) The seven keys to extend administration made reference to inside the book, are important and extremely rational. The information provided for everything about keys is helpful and handy now not just a bundle of axioms. By method for grasping those seven keys, you may roll out excellent improvement and enhance your task initiative. You set the pace, make little incremental alterations or cross substantial something, you do your gathering and your partners might be amazed

(Part 4) gives a theoretical on executing the data shown in past sections. The maker additionally elucidates how to incite liberated of the antiquated ways that have not been serving and uses these gadgets to understand the expanded objective.

Climax

The Power of Project Leadership gives a basic however viable manual for enhancing your venture authority abilities. I like the strategy for getting physical exercises to reinforce the critical things, picking up information of impacts and real presence models from venture directors. Susanne has moreover given a website that gives supplemental texture alongside agendas, moving recordings and diverse reference substances. Here is a site http://www.powerofprojectleadership.com/

Highlights What I liked!

Chapter three has a lot to supply for a project manager and leadership. UN agency is willing to be told and check out new skills. I like how the author says nice leaders place their name in danger by adopting/trying out new ideas. Moreover, good leaders like to challenge, question, listen and realize that they do not have answers to all or any the queries.

More…

To read entire Book Review, click here

 


 

About the Reviewer


Muhammed Umar Tariq

Lahore, Pakistan

 

 

Graduate Holder with a Degree of BBA Hons from University of South Asia, Lahore, Pakistan. Currently doing Master in Business Administration from Same University, majoring in Management Sciences. Final thesis and Some Class project Mentions: Management and risk control of financial institutions, Global Marketing Situations, First Hybrid Car Introduced in Pakistan, E-Learning (Future of Online Education).

He holds Certification in Computerized Accounting and Certification in MS Foundation, and has delivered 10+ Presentations on Self Made Topics, Researches at University Level, participated in different types of Symposiums, Coaching Sessions & Motivational Lectures.

He is currently working at Daewoo Express Pakistan Head office as a Senior Executive in the Investment and Planning Department. Consistently achieved all the targets, Passionate about learning new skills, Developed strong skill set including in depth data and company management Expertise, Honed ability to manage conflict and deal with demanding individuals.

Academia and Public Profile links:
https://usea.academia.edu/UmarTariq
https://asklint.academia.edu/UmarTariq/
https://publons.com/researcher/1757867/muhammad-umar-tariq/

 

If you have read a good recently-published book related to managing programs, projects or teams of professionals, consider authoring a book review for publication in the PM World Journal.  For our standard format or for more information, contact Editor@pmworldjournal.com or visit https://pmworldlibrary.net/book-review-program/

If you are an author or publisher of a project management-related book, and would like the book reviewed through this program, please contact Editor@pmworldjournal.com.

 

 

Project Management of Large Software-Intensive Systems

 

BOOK REVIEW

Book Title: Project Management of Large Software-Intensive Systems: Controlling the Software Development Process
Author:  Marvin Gechman
Publisher:  CRC Press
List Price: $99.95
Format:  Large paperback, 366 pages
Publication Date:  2019
ISBN: 978-0-367-13671-0
Reviewer: Lauren Puglisi, MBA, CAPM
Review Date: June 2019

 

 


 

Introduction

Marvin Gechman offers a “shopping list” of activities and tailoring for large software system developments. With over 57 years of software experience, including 34 in the aerospace industry, he was chosen in 1994 as “the person most responsible for Software Process Improvement” at Lockheed Martin.

Currently President at Escon Software and System Consulting, Mr. Gechman explains how scaling up from smaller projects may no longer be appropriate on large systems development. Working well by themselves, individual components, when interfaced with numerous other hardware and software, can become a System of Systems and difficult to integrate by scaling alone.

Although in a software-intensive system the software is the predominant factor, there are many other scaling considerations such as staff, budgets, deadlines, policies, regulations, procedures, and constraints.

Mr. Gechman states the results of the CHAOS Report, published by The Standish Group, 2016:

    • 32-35% of projects completed successfully
    • 19-24% were failures
    • Being late, over budget, or having fewer features challenged 44-49%

The principle of the book is to help project managers and their teams understand how to perform the intended system functions, make the integration seamless, and to increase success. This book deals with large systems and is advanced, technical and detailed.

Overview of Book’s Structure

As a good project manager would do, the author breaks down the information into six functional interactive domains: System, Software, Resources, Critical Elements, Quality, and Management.

The book is rich with definitions, acronyms, tables and figures. The figures are a visual expression of structures, functions, responsibilities, and project dependencies and hierarchies. Flowcharts assist with understanding complex interactions and the bibliography includes 185 references for further study.

There are also nine appendices with titles such as Criteria for Evaluating Commercial Off-the-Shelf (COTS) and Reusable Software Products, and Software Roles and Responsibilities for Skill Groups.

Highlights

I have chosen one highlight from each of the sixteen chapters to offer a taste of what Mr. Gechman deems important.

  • Chapter 1: Software Project Management Introduction
    Success and failure depend on strategic planning.
  • Chapter 2: Software Project Management Activities
    Every large project should use an automated database for requirements management and traceability.
  • Chapter 3: System and Software Lifecycle Processes
    Failure can happen even when the system meets requirements and quality but has not been tested in the intended operational and  expected environment. (building a plane vs. flying it)

 More…

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About the Reviewer


Lauren Puglisi

Texas, USA

 

 

 

Lauren Puglisi, MBA, CAPM is an accountant, project management professional, and business analyst with 20 years of experience in the real estate and civil engineering fields.

Lauren can be contacted at www.linkedin.com/in/laurenpuglisimba

 

Editor’s note:  This book review was the result of a partnership between the publisher, PM World and the PMI Dallas Chapter. Authors and publishers provide the books to PM World; books are delivered to the PMI Dallas Chapter, where they are offered free to PMI members to review who agree to provide a review within 45 days; book reviews are published in the PM World Journal and PM World Library. 

If you have read a good recently-published book related to managing programs, projects or teams of professionals, consider authoring a book review for publication in the PM World Journal.  For our standard format or for more information, contact Editor@pmworldjournal.com or visit https://pmworldlibrary.net/book-review-program/

If you are an author or publisher of a project management-related book, and would like the book reviewed through this program, please contact Editor@pmworldjournal.com.

 

 

Transforming Business

 

BOOK REVIEW

Book Title:  Transforming Business with Program Management
Author:  Satish P. Subramanian
Publisher:  CRC Press
List Price:   $63.16
Format:  Hardcover, 222 pages
Publication Date:  2015
ISBN: 13-978-1-4665-9099-1
Reviewer: Deborah Reinagel, PMP
Review Date: June 2019

 


 

Introduction

This book demonstrates how Program Management can give organizations a competitive edge when implementing business transformation.  Subramanian illuminates how program management unites strategy, people, process, technology, structure, and measurement to drive and sustain business transformation. The book draws parallels between strategic planning and project management aimed to restructure current state business.  Subramanian provides strategies and techniques for organizations to utilize in pursuit of successfully transforming programs.

Overview of Book’s Structure

Satish Subramanian very clearly addresses the business case for writing this book, the benefit to implementing the processes shared, and risks from not following the process.  The book encompasses how organizations are employing program management to deliver the outcomes desired of complex, strategic, cross functional initiatives.  The book is composed of 12 chapters.  The first two chapters are meant to set the stage.  Chapter 1 gives the reader background of how we have come to need Program management and why businesses need to incorporate these methodologies to gain a competitive edge.  Chapter 2 then begins to give a synapse of the remaining book and how each chapter is organized.  Chapters 3 – 12 are dedicated to each of the 10 principles of program management.  The chapters dedicated to each of the 10 principles clearly explains the chapter key concept and submits an outline of the points supporting the concept to be further explained within the chapter.  Chapters are all supported with many visuals, objectives, benefits, a real-world case study and a chapter summary.

Highlights

Visual learners will appreciate the many illustrations to demonstrate key concepts throughout the book.  Additionally, the book provides examples of what a specific model would look like or a how to validate a process.  The book is easy to read and very fluid.  Every chapter utilizes the same chapter format making it easy to reference or refer back to key concepts regarding a process.  Chapters begin with a business case, followed by Key points, action items, expectations and closes with a real-life case study to provide backup for the principles discussed.

More…

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About the Reviewer


Deborah Reinagel, PMP

San Antonio, TX, USA

 

 

Deborah Reinagel is Director of Program Management for a Healthcare organization in San Antonio.  She has established a career history of improving business systems for a variety of industries by utilizing technology, data intelligence and project management best practices.  The business systems she has initiated increased performance and reduced cost.   Deborah is experienced in cultivating teams and building departments from scratch.  She has created new revenue streams and helped support business development teams with data analytics. She has received recognition for applying superior project management skills to improve business performance.

Deborah is an alumna from Texas A&M Corpus Christi with a BBA in Finance, PMP, and is a certified Six Sigma Green Belt.  In addition to serving as VP of Finance for the Alamo PMI Chapter, Deborah participates in the Alamo Chapter book review program. She can be contacted at deborahd832@gmail.com

 

Editor’s note:  This book review was the result of a partnership between the publisher, PM World and the PMI Alamo Chapter. Authors and publishers offer the books to PM World; books are delivered to the PMI Alamo Chapter, where they are offered free to PMI members to review; book reviews are published in the PM World Journal and PM World Library.  PMI Alamo Chapter members can keep the books as well as claim PDUs for PMP recertification when their reviews are published. 

If you have read a good recently-published book related to managing programs, projects or teams of professionals, consider authoring a book review for publication in the PM World Journal.  For our standard format or for more information, contact Editor@pmworldjournal.com or visit https://pmworldlibrary.net/book-review-program/

If you are an author or publisher of a project management-related book, and would like the book reviewed through this program, please contact Editor@pmworldjournal.com.

 

 

 

The Complete Project Manager

 

BOOK REVIEW

Book Title:  The Complete Project Manager: Integrating People, Organizational, and Technical Skills
Authors:  Randall Englund, Alfonso Bucero
Publisher:  Management Concepts, Inc.
List Price:   $58.16
Format:  Paper, 273 pages
Publication Date:   2012    
ISBN: 978-1-56726-359-6
Reviewer: Valentina Rada, MBA, PMP, PMI-ACP
Review Date: July 2019

 


 

Introduction

The Complete Project Manager book outlines the variety of soft project management skills necessary for successful project management and shows the complexity of efficient project management. Project managers’ role is more than defining schedules, identifying risks, and engaging stakeholders; it’s about leadership, negotiations, fun, change management and so many other soft skills.

The authors, Randall Englund and Alfonso Bucero, two former senior project managers at Hewlett Packard, emphasize areas that make a project manager complete. They share their experiences and use them as examples throughout the book. From that perspective, The Complete Project Manager is a great blend of principles and real life experience. Key project management concepts are covered in simple but thoughtful manners that bring the reader to authors’ day to day project management experience.

Overview of Book’s Structure

The book highlights key components of a complete project manager described metaphorically as a “complex molecule”. Similarly to how organic compounds are structurally diverse, project management is the application of knowledge, skills and techniques to execute projects effectively and efficiently. The book is a guide of how to build your own combination of “molecules” as your project management skill set.

The Complete Project Manager emphasizes how to integrate key people, organizational and technical skills. The authors outline the multitude of skill areas a complete project manager should leverage to be successful.

In the book are described and exemplified twelve of soft project management skills: 1) Leadership – be visionary; 2) Personal Skills – consider people interaction; 3) Humor – bring FUN on the agenda; 4) Project Management Skills – utilize PMI’s Project Management Body of Knowledge; 5) Environment Skills – create project-friendly environment conditions; 6) Organizational Skills – execute projects in “green” organizations rather than “toxic” ones; 7) Negotiating Skills – engage in negotiations; 8) Political Skills – be politically sensitive; 9) Conflict Management Skills – embrace constructive contention; 10) Sales Skills – sale the value of services and processes; 11) Change Management Skills – understand change management process; 12) Customer Knowledge – apply servant leadership skills.

Highlights

I really enjoyed how the authors of The Complete Project Manager portrait project managers’ role as being a blend of skills related to people, technical skills and culture. A project manager in order to be successful covers this entire spectrum. The authors allocate a good chunk of their journey to soft personal skills. The importance of relationships, networking, and political awareness is crucial for a complete project manager. It takes a lot farther than simply being technical competent or intelligent; it’s how one relates and persuades the relationship with others. As per this Chinese proverb, “The smart man knows everything; the wise man knows everyone”.

More…

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About the Reviewer


Valentina Rada

Texas, USA

 

 

 

Valentina Rada’s professional experience includes twenty years of experience in market research, retail and restaurant industries as research analyst and project manager. She is a Project Management Professional and an Agile Certified Practitioner. She has a Master in Business Administration from the University of the Incarnate Word. She is currently a Senior Project Manager for the City of San Antonio in Texas.

Valentina can be reached at valirada@hotmail.com or www.linkedin.com/in/valentina-rada

 

Editor’s note:  This book review was the result of a partnership between the publisher, PM World and the PMI Alamo Chapter. Authors and publishers offer the books to PM World; books are delivered to the PMI Alamo Chapter, where they are offered free to PMI members to review; book reviews are published in the PM World Journal and PM World Library.  PMI Alamo Chapter members can keep the books as well as claim PDUs for PMP recertification when their reviews are published. 

If you have read a good recently-published book related to managing programs, projects or teams of professionals, consider authoring a book review for publication in the PM World Journal.  For our standard format or for more information, contact Editor@pmworldjournal.com or visit https://pmworldlibrary.net/book-review-program/

If you are an author or publisher of a project management-related book, and would like the book reviewed through this program, please contact Editor@pmworldjournal.com.

 

 

A VUCAA-Mindset and VUCAA-Model

For Project Business Management in the 4th Industrial Revolution

 

SECOND EDITION

By Darrel G. Hubbard, PE, 
President & CEO, D.G.Hubbard Enterprises, LLC
California, USA

and

Peter W. Rogers, CEO, P17 Group LLC
Senior Consultant, The Experience Praxis Group, Inc.
Georgia, USA

 


 

INTRODUCTION

The new norm is a business environment where the challenges caused by Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity, and Ambiguity (VUCA) are accelerating. The 4th Industrial Revolution is entering its exponential-change phase which is accelerating the disruptive VUCA forces that business, portfolio, program, and project leadership must address. This has created the VUCA-Accelerated (VUCAA) business conditions within today’s marketplace. This Fourth Industrial Revolution, the era of Digital Transformation commonly called “Industry 4.0,” arrived with the advent of the 21st century. Klaus Schwab, in his 2016 book, The Fourth Industrial Revolution [36], has opined that digitalization, emerging technologies, and broad-based-innovation will revolutionize everything. He noted that “major technological changes are on the brink of fueling momentous change throughout the world.”

Industry 4.0 refers to the current trend of extensive automation and data exchange in communications, manufacturing, production, and services, and the increasing miniaturization of technology. It is driving the integration of digital and physical technologies across all areas of business, society, production, mobility, and communications. This technological revolution is blurring the lines between the human, physical, digital, robotic, and biological spheres. It includes a wide range of current and coming changes, such as: cyber-physical systems; Internet of Things; Internet of Robotic Things; Internet of Systems; cloud computing; cognitive computing; predictive analytics; device interoperability; information transparency; decentralized decision-making; artificial intelligence; cognitive technologies; consumer software applications; smart manufacturing; ubiquitous mobile supercomputing; intelligent robots; self-driving cars; neuro-technological brain enhancements; genetic editing; technological convergence; integration of operational technology with information technology; combining big data and materials science; and bi-directional assistance between humans and machines [21].

Leaders in most industries are finally becoming aware of the emerging technologies that will drive disruptions within their marketplace. Those businesses are working on being able to function in the new digital economy that is driven by knowledge, powered by technology, and fueled by information. Fred Rogers, in his 2013 book Ride the Wave: How 12 Technologies Will Change the World and Make You Rich, and subsequent presentations at the Harvard Business School, has given his view on how information technologies will transform every aspect of people’s lives, and business and project management operations. Four of his points are:

  • Moore’s Law will “keep rolling along” improving price-performance by at least 6400% before jumping on a totally new and steeper [exponential] performance curve;
  • Over a trillion devices will be accessible on the world-wide-web by 2030 transforming virtually everything in our lives;
  • By 2030, Artificial Intelligence (AI) combined with the Internet of Things (IoT) and robotics will grow the real American economy by roughly 80% – while the workforce will grow only 5%; and
  • Information technology will provide transformative solutions to the mega-challenges of our age: health care, potable water, elder care, national security, transportation, global poverty, etc.

The speed of current breakthroughs has no historical precedent. When compared with the relatively linear changes brought by the three previous industrial revolutions, Industry 4.0 is evolving at an exponential rather than a linear pace – change and its related disruptions are accelerating as indicated below in Figure 1.

Figure 1:  INDUSTRY 4.0    Disruptive Transformative Forces

The breadth and depth of these changes foreshadow the transformation of entire systems of production, management, governance, line-organizations, and whole enterprises. Moreover, major disruptions are happening in almost every industry in every country, and no enterprise is too big to fail. It used to be about the big eating the small; now the fast and agile annihilate the slow and ponderous. An International Data Corporation (IDC) report “FutureScape: Worldwide CIO Agenda 2016 Predictions [22]” emphasized that, “One-third of the top 20 firms in industry segments will be disrupted by new competitors within five years,” and that it is a matter of “transform or perish.”

By creating, applying, and embedding smart and connected technology, Industry 4.0 is transforming enterprises, economies, jobs, and even society and countries. Changes and innovation within the multilateral worldwide marketplace are now accelerating and this acceleration will be sustained. The related impacts can be seen in the multiple interrelated demographic, entrepreneurial, sociological, geo-political, structural, operational, economic, and technological disruptions that are continually occurring within the global marketplace.

These business disruptors are keeping project and business management operations in flux and demand timely, proactive, agile, and adaptive responses. This requires business analysis, systems thinking, active-listening, leveraging various forms of increased diversity, and a different mindset to move from reactive to proactive agile leadership within the operations, development, and project management disciplines.

More…

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Editor’s note: Second Editions are previously published papers that have continued relevance in today’s project management world, or which were originally published in conference proceedings or in a language other than English.  Original publication acknowledged; authors retain copyright.  This paper was originally presented at the 13th Annual UT Dallas Project Management Symposium in May 2019.  It is republished here with the permission of the author and conference organizers.

How to cite this paper: Hubbard, D.G., Rogers, P.W. (2019). A VUCAA-Mindset and VUCAA-Model for Project Business Management in the 4th Industrial Revolution; presented at the 13th Annual UT Dallas Project Management Symposium, Richardson, Texas, USA in May 2019; PM World Journal, Vol. VIII, Issue VII, August. Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/pmwj84-Aug2019-Hubbard-Rogers-VUCAA-Mindset-and-VUCAA-Model-in-4th-Industrial-Revolution.pdf

 


 

About the Authors


Darrel G. Hubbard, P.E.

California, USA

 

 

Darrel Hubbard is President of D.G.Hubbard Enterprises, LLC providing executive consulting and assessment services. He has over 50 years of experience in consulting, line management, and technical positions. He has served as a corporate executive officer; managed information technology, proposal, accounting, and project management organizations; managed the due diligence processes for numerous mergers and acquisitions; was a program manager on engineering projects; was a project manager on commercial projects; and a designated “key person” under government contracts. He has also held executive positions in, and was professionally licensed in, the securities and insurance industries.

He assists organizations, as a Subject Matter Expert (SME) consultant, to achieve their enterprise’s strategic business and tactical objectives. He provides analysis of their management structures, business processes, general business operations, and project and business management capabilities, while supplying specific recommendations on business, methodology, toolset, and process improvements. Mr. Hubbard also assists companies, as an out-side third party, with the intricacies of the due diligence process in their merger and acquisition activities. He also supports companies in the managerial development and establishment of Organizational Project Management (OPM) and their Project/Program/Portfolio Organizations (PMOs) and provides work­shops and seminars focusing on the business management aspects of the project management discipline.

Mr. Hubbard holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and physics with a minor in chemistry from Minnesota State University at Moorhead. He is a registered Professional Engineer in Control Systems in California. Mr. Hubbard joined the Project Management Institute (PMI) in 1978 (#3662), is a charter member of the PMI San Diego Chapter, and was deputy project manager for the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK®) Guide Third Edition ANSI Standard by PMI. He was the Exhibitor Chairperson for the 1993 PMI North American Congress/Seminar/Symposium, is a published author of many articles, a presenter at many PMI Congresses and other Project Management Symposiums, a keynote speaker, and a guest speaker at PMI and IIBA Chapter meetings. Darrel is also a Life-Member of the International Society of Automation (ISA).

He is a contributing author to The AMA Handbook of Project Management, AMACOM, 1993 and The ABCs of DPC: A Primer on Design-Procurement-Construction for the Project Manager, PMI, 1997. He is the co-author with Dennis L. Bolles of The Power of Enterprise-Wide Project Management: Introducing a Business Management Model Integrating and Harmonizing Operations Business Management and Project Management, hardcover – AMACOM, NY, 2007; revised and retitled in paperback, The Power of Enterprise PMOs and Enterprise-Wide Project Management – PBMconcepts, MI, 2014; A Compendium of PMO Case Studies – Volume I: Reflecting Project Business Management Concepts – PBMconcepts, MI, 2012; and A Compendium of PMO Case Studies – Volume II: Reflecting Project Business Management Concepts – PBMconcepts, MI, 2016.

He can be contacted at Darrel.Hubbard@dghellc.com and LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/in/DarrelGHubbard. Visit the PBMconcepts website at www.PBMconcepts.com for information about current and future book projects.

 


Peter W. Rogers

Georgia, USA

 

 

Peter Rogers is CEO of P17 Group LLC, and Senior Innovation Consultant at The Experience Praxis Group, Inc. He has over 40 years of experience in consulting, training, and executive management. He has served on boards of directors; and as head of an enterprise PMO; master facilitator; master trainer; master scheduler; lead consultant; portfolio, program, and project manager; adjunct professor and guest lecturer at Florida International University and several other colleges and universities; and speaker. Peter has founded and launched four of his own successful companies, and contributed to the startup and success of several other companies, including one that went public on NASDAQ.

Peter works with CEOs, top teams, other leaders, and managers in the space between strategy development and implementation to assure that organizations have the optimal structure, culture, and project/work delivery systems to achieve their goals and strategies. He assists with organizational restructuring and shifting culture to include a ‘culture of innovation’, and innovative and growth mindsets. He has provided these services to many Fortune 500 companies, including Microsoft, Starbucks, Chevron, Hewlett Packard, Boeing, PACCAR, Weyerhaeuser, Abbott, and others.

Peter holds a bachelor’s degree in biological oceanography, and masters’ degrees in economics and marine policy, all from the University of Washington, Seattle, Washington. He joined the Project Management Institute (PMI) in 1985 and was a work stream lead as a member of the core team of PMI’s Organizational Project Management Maturity Model (OPM3) project. He is a published author of several articles, a presenter at various project management symposiums, a keynote speaker, and a guest speaker at various functions. He has recently spoken at conferences in Dallas, Singapore, Shanghai, Prague, Noosa, and other locations on topics ranging from business agility and Agile, managing culture, managing innovation, to influencing, presenting, and emotional intelligence.

He is co-author of Project Management Made Simple and Effective, Dog Ear Publishing, IN, 2016, and contributing author to Business Innovation Results: How to Avoid 5 Innovation Traps the Doom Bottom-Line Results, Dog Ear Publishing, IN, 2017; Turn Great Ideas into Reality: Develop and Present a Winning Business Case, Dog Ear Publishing, IN, 2011; and Passing the PMI Scheduling Professional (PMI-SP) (c) Certification Exam the First Time, Dog Ear Publishing, IN, 2017.

He can be contacted at Peter@p17group.com and Peter.Rogers@experiencepraxis.com , and LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/peter-rogers-982a7214/

 

 

Can complex adaptive systems help

the wicked problem that is project management?

 

SECOND EDITION

By Dr Michael Pace

Mays Business School
Texas A&M University

College Station, TX, USA

 


 

ABSTRACT

Wicked problems are among the most challenging and complex issues faced. They are often defined by the complexity, by the presence of contradictory information or knowledge, the network of opinions and stakeholders involved, and the interconnected, often interdisciplinary, nature of the problem.  Project management (PM) is the set of practices, procedures, and tools used to organize work and deliver unique results through group activities, within a specific time frame. The benefits of project management have been well documented over the past several decades; yet, the reality of project management maturity and adoption is that not every organization deploys PM practices and those that do so in an immature way. In fact, organizations continue to question the relevance and need for project management despite the empirical evidence of its effectiveness. In the context of a wicked problem, no two projects (or project environments) are the same, and the solution (often a project management methodology) deployed in one setting rarely is successful unilaterally. The resulting occurrence is what is currently seen – consistent project success remains just out of reach.  Using the perspective of complex adaptive systems (CAS) may provide a useful lens to bridge the dichotomy between project management benefit and project management methodology. At the base layer, CAS consist of agents who interact and learn from each and from the environment. These interactions are nonlinear. The interactions and evolutions, however, can generate emerging behaviors that are less non-linear (though still unpredictable). To illustrate this concept within project management, a case study of two project organizations within a decentralized setting is presented. The findings of inconsistent success within each organization, despite consistent methods deployed, support the assertion that project management as a complex adaptive system should be treated as a wicked problem

Keywords:  Complex Adaptive Systems; PM Methodology; Project Management; VUCA

INTRODUCTION

A continuing conundrum persists regarding project management success.  Longitudinal analysis of projects that succeed, fail, or are considering challenged reveals decades of stagnation in spite of repeated attempts at improvement.  Even the tag of “challenged” carries a weight, as those involved in projects prefer not to admit failure but recognize the lack of success.  A new perspective on project management approaches is therefore warranted.

The intersection of complexity theory and wicked problems may provide one such avenue.  Projects exist in VUCA-environments – volatile, uncertain, complex, ambiguous.   The initiatives themselves are complex, difficult to predict, and lacking linearity.  Rationalistic attempts at resolution are met with futility (e.g. wicked problems).  Complex adaptive systems and wicked problems seem to synergistic suggest customization is required beyond contemporary project management approaches.

As illustration of this point, a case study is presented of a large, decentralized organization.  A cross-section of two organizations, each with a successful and a failed project, are discussed.  Rationalistic thinking would suggest success is repeatable within an organization charged with similar projects.  The present case study challenges this perspective, as success remains inconsistent.

More…

To read entire paper, click here

 

Editor’s note: Second Editions are previously published papers that have continued relevance in today’s project management world, or which were originally published in conference proceedings or in a language other than English.  Original publication acknowledged; authors retain copyright.  This paper was originally presented at the 13th Annual UT Dallas Project Management Symposium in May 2019.  It is republished here with the permission of the author and conference organizers.

How to cite this paper: Pace, M. (2019). Can complex adaptive systems help the wicked problem that is project management? presented at the 13th Annual UT Dallas Project Management Symposium, Richardson, Texas, USA in May 2019; published in the PM World Journal, Vol. VIII, Issue VII, August.  Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/pmwj84-Aug2019-Pace-can-complex-adaptive-systems-help-wicked-project-management.pdf

 


 

About the Author


Dr Michael Pace

Texas A&M University
College Station, TX, USA

 

 

Dr. Michael Pace currently serves Texas A&M University as Executive Professor within Mays Department of Management. As a practitioner, Dr. Pace has held various positions related to project, program and portfolio management across a broad variety of organizations and industries. Dr. Pace received his doctorate from Capella University in Business Management with a specialization in Project Management, Master’s degree from Sam Houston State in Forensic Science, and Bachelor’s degree from Baylor University in Forensic Science. In addition to his Mays appointment, he serves in adjunct roles with Texas A&M Corpus Christi, Texas A&M Energy Institute, and Texas A&M Engineering.

Dr. Pace’s research is focused on project management methodologies, especially the customization of a method to fit the project need. He teaches courses in project management, strategic management, and organizational behavior. He can be contacted at wpace@mays.tamu.edu

 

 

Managing for Meaningful Outcomes

 

SECOND EDITION

By Charles G. Chandler, PhD

Texas, USA

 


 

ABSTRACT

Management has been called the technology of human accomplishment, yet traditional management approaches often fail to produce meaningful results. Management technology needs to be reinvented because it remains primarily organization-centric and locked into a largely meaningless input-output model that values efficiency as the highest good. Historically, this approach has been the basis for a vast constellation of organizations in business, government, and nonprofits sectors, but it generally fails to produce meaningful and timely evidence for management decision support, and frequently creates negative side-effects among internal actors and within the environment. Going forward, management technology needs to adopt a more meaningful input-outcome model that values positive organizational effectiveness as the highest good and serves to sustain or improve the health of both the organization and its environment as a holistic system. This is what managing for meaningful outcomes aims to achieve.

RECOGNIZING THE PROBLEM

From 1982-1985, I was based in New Delhi India, working for the World Health Organization (WHO) in the regional office for SE Asia. It was during the UN’s International Drinking Water Supply & Sanitation Decade, 1981-1990 (better known as the UN Water Decade). At the time, I was the project manager for WHO/UNDP’s Advisory Services Project that was part of the Decade. My job entailed visiting countries in the region to see what was going right and what was going wrong with the Water Decade and helping participating government organizations improve their programs.

Government agencies in participating countries thought they knew what end users needed, since they had been providing water and sanitation services for decades. They said they just needed more funds to build more facilities. But completed facilities were frequently in disrepair, and others were not utilized by end users for the purposes intended due to a variety of reasons.

The goal of the UN Water Decade was to expand the ‘coverage’ of safe water and adequate sanitation in participating countries. The focus on coverage (i.e., access to services) turned out to be an unfortunate choice because the goal typically resulted in a numbers game in each country, where success was measured in rural areas, for instance, by how much of the population was covered with hand pumps & latrines. If rural users were within a few minutes’ walk from a hand pump, they were deemed to have access to safe water supply. The fact that some of the hand pumps were in disrepair and others were not being used for their intended purposes was not easily reflected in the system.

Much of the problem was due to a conceptual gap between the planners and the end users. They didn’t understand each other. The planners were delivering engineering solutions based on their technical training, but the adoption and use of their solutions was hampered in traditional societies by the embedded patterns of thought found in the social and cultural narratives of the past. Later in the UN Water Decade, WHO urged governments to look beyond coverage, to ensure the continued functioning of the completed facilities and their utilization by end users (for the intended purposes).

This example highlights a fundamental problem at the heart of traditional management approaches, that is, what counts as meaningful accomplishment. As we will see, the overall program goal for the UN Water Decade was set at the wrong level (a largely meaningless supply-side output which focused on ‘coverage’), which then drove what was delivered during implementation, and the subsequent evaluation of completed activities. Traditional management does not distinguish between arbitrary output-level objectives and meaningful outcome-level objectives during the objective setting process, and later during program implementation and evaluation. This problem was baked into management science at the beginning and has not been corrected since. Historical examples of this fundamental problem can be found in the Scientific Management movement of Frederick Winslow Taylor (Taylor 1911), the Management by Objectives approach pioneered by Peter Drucker (Drucker 1954), as well as some more recent management remedies such as OKRs — or Objectives & Key Results (Doerr 2018).

TRADITIONAL MANAGEMENT

This paper is about managing for meaningful outcomes, a new approach to management that offers significant benefits for projects, programs, and organizations more generally, as well as the wider world. It would have made the UN Water Decade much more effective and sustainable.

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Editor’s note: Second Editions are previously published papers that have continued relevance in today’s project management world, or which were originally published in conference proceedings or in a language other than English.  Original publication acknowledged; authors retain copyright.  This paper was originally presented at the 6th Annual University of Maryland PM Symposium in May 2019.  It is republished here with the permission of the author and conference organizers.

How to cite this paper: Chandler, C.G. (2019). Managing for Meaningful Outcomes; presented at the 6th Annual University of Maryland Project Management Symposium, College Park, Maryland, USA in May 2019; PM World Journal, Vol. VIII, Issue VII, August.  Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/pmwj84-Aug2019-Chandler-managing-for-meaningful-outcomes.pdf

 


 

About the Author


Charles G. Chandler, Ph.D.

Texas, USA

 

 

Charles G. Chandler graduated from the University of Texas at Austin (B.S. and Ph.D.) and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (M.S.), where he studied engineering sciences. He served in the US Peace Corps in Nepal, and later worked at the Texas Water Development Board in Austin, where he managed the state’s program in water conservation and drought contingency planning. In 1982 he founded a management consulting firm (Assumption Analysis, Inc) and has undertaken assignments for clients related to project design, evaluation, and organizational management in 25 countries. Clients have included USAID, the World Health Organization, the UN Development Programme, the World Bank Group, the Asian Development Bank, and the African Development Bank, among others. Dr. Chandler is a member of the Academy of Management, is married, and lives in the Texas hill country.

 

 

Project Manager Transition

A new skill set for managing large and complex projects

 

SECOND EDITION

By Richard Wyatt

United Kingdom

 


 

ABSTRACT

As projects grow in size their level of complexity grows exponentially. History has shown that many project managers struggle to deliver larger and more complex projects while others transition successfully.

Project managers typically follow a similar initial career trajectory; learn key techniques and tools, deliver small projects under supervision. Over time they are trusted with larger and larger projects as they demonstrate success with the smaller ones. Progress continues until the individual starts to struggle and supervisors limit coaching to reiterating the basic tenets of project management. Why do only some project managers continue their success with large and complex projects? What do those who are successfully with large project do differently?

Successful managers of large and complex project transition to executive level management, leaving behind those colleagues who continue to focus on project administration. Specifically they; loosen their grip on project detail, there is too much in a large project. They organize autonomous but accountable work streams. They focus on where challenges are most likely to occur, recognizing that organizations are an integrated web of sub goals. They also anticipate there will be constant changes develop plans that are flexible. All these skills enable the successful project manager to reduce the time spent on tactical project administration and so they can spend their time working strategically to preempt potential issues.

THE CHALLENGE OF SUCCESSFULLY MANAGING LARGE PROJECTS

Over the last 30 years I have observed hundreds of project managers and thousands of projects. The majority of these efforts have been well organized and delivered successfully. However, an analysis of these projects has shown that the success rate declines as the projects get large and more complex. Literature that describes big project failure is widely available and makes compelling reading. Examples such as: Mars Climate Orbiter(1), Denver Airport Baggage Handling System(2). and Westpac CS90(3). To be fair, there are many large, complex projects that are delivered successfully. So, this raises a question, why do some project managers transition to large projects successfully while so many others begin to flounder as complexity increases?

Three stages to struggling with large projects

Typically, a project manager’s journey starts at a junior level. A personal choice of career direction combined with an organizational need to guide discrete bodies of work through successful delivery. The individual will receive training in core project management techniques. The training may be anywhere from in-house coaching to full certification from an organization such as the Project Management Institute.

Stage 1: Managing small simple projects

Initial assignments will encompass small projects, likely self-contained within a single part of the organization. The enthusiastic new project manager will create a detailed Work Breakdown structure often with tasks down to durations of an hour, predecessors for every task and a constantly updated percent complete field. This is all good. The supervisor of the new project manager constantly emphasizes managing the detail.

The initial projects are all a success with the new project manager on top of every detail. I equate this to juggling with two tennis balls, it needs some coordination but is not too difficult.

Stage 2: Managing more complex projects

As the project manager’ reputation for success grows so does the complexity of the projects they are asked to manage. Projects will grow in size and complexity. The projects will include resources from other organizations, may involve more complex technology and will generally have more moving parts. The project manager continues to utilize the core techniques and seeks to stay on top of the detail to ensure everything happens per the plan.

Project managers are still successful, but it is becoming much harder. The project plan needs to change frequently to account for better understood requirements and stretched due dates. There are more relationships to manage some of which become contentious. Staying on top of the detail becomes a time sink. Supervisors tend to reiterate by the book techniques focused on managing the detail.

I equate this to juggling 3 balls, with the occasional superstar managing 4 or 5. Even the skilled juggler begins to find their limit.

More…

To read entire paper, click here

 

Editor’s note: Second Editions are previously published papers that have continued relevance in today’s project management world, or which were originally published in conference proceedings or in a language other than English.  Original publication acknowledged; authors retain copyright.  This paper was originally presented at the 6th Annual University of Maryland PM Symposium in May 2019.  It is republished here with the permission of the author and conference organizers.

How to cite this paper: Wyatt, R. (2019). Project Manager Transition: A new skill set for managing large and complex projects; presented at the 6th Annual University of Maryland Project Management Symposium, College Park, Maryland, USA in May 2019; PM World Journal, Vol. VIII, Issue VII, August. Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/pmwj84-Aug2019-Wyatt-project-manager-transition.pdf

 


 

About the Author


Richard Wyatt

United Kingdom

 

 

 

Richard Wyatt is the Director of Strategic Programs at TIAA, a leading Financial Services provider. He has worked across the globe in UK, US, Australia and Indonesia delivering project of growing size and complexity. He currently manages projects with budgets in excess of $100m. During his career he has observed project managers struggle and the size of their project increase and has researched and articulated the skills set required to be successful. Richard has a BA in Computing in Business and an MBA from Durham University, UK.

 

 

Finland Project Management Roundup for August 2019

 

Updates about Project Management Association Finland; PMI Finland Chapter; Olkiluoto 3 nuclear power plant; Hanhikivi 1 nuclear power plant; Helsinki’s Länsimetro extension; Raide-Jokeri light rail project

 

REPORT

By Dr Jouko Vaskimo

International Correspondent & Senior Contributing Editor

Espoo, Finland

 

 


 

INTRODUCTION

This roundup continues the coverage of Project Management Association Finland, PMI Finland Chapter and some of the key projects currently going on in Finland.

PROJECT MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION FINLAND

Project Management Association Finland (PMAF), Projektiyhdistys ry in Finnish, is a not-for-profit organization, and the International Project Management Association (IPMA) Member Association (MA) in Finland. Founded in 1978, PMAF promotes the interaction, project-oriented thinking, and exchange and development of practical and theoretical knowledge among project management professionals with 4000 individual and over 200 organizational members.

PMAF promotes the development and dissemination of project and project management knowledge. PMAF members are able to enjoy information sharing, workgroups, development projects, project management forums, conferences and certification services PMAF provides. PMAF organizes two annual conferences: Project Days (Projektipäivät in Finnish) in early November, and 3PMO in early June. This year 3PMO took place on June 6th in Tampere with the theme Capabilities that determine success. Please navigate to www.pry.fi/en , https://www.oppia.fi/events/3pmo/?lang=en and www.projektipaivat.fi for general information on PMAF and its annual events.

PMI FINLAND CHAPTER

PMI Finland Chapter is a not-for-profit organization providing project practitioners in Finland continuous learning, networking and community support. The Chapter was founded in 2005. Today, with more than 400 members, the chapter is increasingly recognized as a community where its members can enhance their project management and leadership skills, as well as network with other project management professionals.

PMI Finland Chapter hosts a number of events such as Breakfast Round Tables, regular meetings taking place once a month in Helsinki and occasionally also in other locations. The chapter members have the opportunity to attend events for free or with a discount and the chapter sends its members a regular newsletter with localized content on project management. Additionally, the Chapter supports its members in their professional development and training.

PMI Chapter Finland organizes an annual conference in the spring. This year the conference took place on May 23rd with an overarching theme Inspire. Please navigate to www.pmifinland.org and www.conference.pmifinland.org for general information on the PMI Finland Chapter and its annual events.

OLKILUOTO 3

The 1 600 MW Olkiluoto 3 nuclear power plant, originally contracted to be built by consortium comprising Areva and Siemens for Teollisuuden Voima (TVO) at Olkiluoto, Finland, has run into yet further delay, and is estimated to start commercial power generation in July 2020. This means the power plant supplier Areva will need to pay TVO additional delay penalties as per the agreement reached in March 2018. The latest delay – moving the start of commercial power generation from January 2020 to July 2020 – came up when Areva delivered an updated commissioning schedule in mid-July. Areva had promised to provide the updated schedule in June, however, missed this deadline by a month.

More…

To read entire report, click here

 

How to cite this report: Vaskimo, J. (2019). Finland Project Management Roundup for August 2019, PM World Journal, Vol. VIII, Issue VII, August.  Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/pmwj84-Aug2019-Vaskimo-Finland-Project-Management-Roundup-report.pdf

 


 

About the Author


Dr Jouko Vaskimo

Espoo, Finland

 

 

 Jouko Vaskimo is an International Correspondent and Senior Contributing Editor for PM World in Finland. Jouko graduated M.Sc. (Tech.) from Helsinki University of Technology in 1992, and D.Sc. (Tech.) from Aalto University in 2016. He has held several project management related positions with increasing levels for responsibility. Jouko holds a number of professional certificates in the field of project management, such as the IPMA Level C (Project Manager), IPMA Level B (Senior Project Manager), PMP, PRINCE2 Foundation, and PRINCE2 Practitioner. Jouko is also a Certified Scrum Master and SAFe Agilist.

Jouko is a member of the Project Management Association Finland, a founding member of PMI Finland Chapter, and the immediate past chairman of the Finnish IPMA Certification Body operating IPMA certification in Finland. Since October 2007, he has been heading the Finnish delegation to ISO/TC 258.

Jouko resides in Espoo, Finland and can be best contacted at jouko.vaskimo@aalto.fi. For more information please navigate to www.linkedin.com/in/jouko-vaskimo-6285b51.

To view other works by Jouko Vaskimo, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/jouko-vaskimo/

 

August 2019 UK Project Management Round Up

 

Prime Ministerial Impact, BREXIT, APM News, IPMA Research Awards, A Conflict Over Project Success and Buckingham Palace needs a Project Manager

 

REPORT

By Miles Shepherd

Executive Advisor & International Correspondent

Salisbury, England, UK

 


 

INTRODUCTION

Well, it’s all happening here in UK.  We have a new Prime Minister, APM has a new President, England won the World Cup Cricket and we are at the start of the Ashes (for non-cricketing readers – this is the series of international 5 day matches between England and Australia).  To cap it all, we have basked in scorching hot sunshine in some parts of the country but shivered and soaked under violent thunderstorms in other parts.

I don’t think I can fairly categorise news in the Project World as good, bad or indifferent so I will leave you to sort out your own views on the impact of a new Prime Minister (not PM as the press have it, we reserve that abbreviation for Project Managers) on the Project world, what is going on in BREXIT, developments at the Association for Project Management (APM) and the International Project Management Association.

PRIME MINISTERIAL IMPACT

We now have Boris Johnson as Prime Minister.  He is a divisive figure as followers of the national press will know all too well but he is also prime mover in the BREXIT movement and so we can expect considerable action on that front, as explained in the next section.  However, Mr Johnson made interventions in June on the future of High Speed 2 (HS2), hinting his opposition to the latest cost challenges.  However, He appears to have rowed back from a critical position by asking the Chairman of HS2 to review the business case.  Liz Truss, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, had earlier threatened to kill off so called “white elephant” projects, including HS2, as Ministers have been told to use this Summer’s Spending Review to decide which Whitehall departments will get more cash and which will be asked to tighten their belts.  Truss moved to International Trade Secretary in the BoJo Cabinet Reshuffle so can still keep an eye on some major projects, but latest reports claim that the Prime Minister said he was not currently intending to scrap any major infrastructure projects despite estimates suggesting the HS2 high speed rail line will cost more than £100bn,  Of course, this position is subject to expediency corrections – the latest You Gov poll  has found a distinct lack of support for HS2 in the Midlands – the one region expected to benefit most.

BREXIT

Now we have a strongly pro-BREXIT Prime Minister, we also have a new administration with similar views.  Several Departments have issued new spending priorities.  The Prime Minister is said by many to be turbo charging preparations to leave on 29 October and instructed cabinet ministers to mount a publicity blitz along the lines that UK is planning to leave with no EU deal.  In essence, he is saying that neither UK nor the EU want a no-deal exit but without some shift in the EU position, especially on the Irish border issue, UK will be forced to leave with no deal.  This pushes the “blame” back to M Barnier, the chief EU negotiator.

The situation is complicated by confusion over the rights of EU citizens to remain in UK post BREXIT.  Successive regimes in UK have stated that EU citizens of “settled status” will be welcome to remain and the new Prime Minister said the rights of EU citizens would be “guaranteed in law” as early as possible.  He also pledged a massive overhaul of the UK’s migration system following the end of free movement.  Both will take primary legislation and that will take time.

Outbound delays at Dover – supply chain problems to come.   Photo – Rohan Josh

It is quite clear that there will be considerable disruption to the supply of imported goods post Brexit.  Some of these shortages will affect projects, probably construction as steel and concrete need to come from overseas.  Other project will have problems recruiting specialist staff and will be unable to recruit overseas.  Some of these problems offer opportunities for firms as they seek other suppliers and also significant opportunities for the project profession as demand will likely rise against a static supply of trained staff and even fewer experienced practitioners will be available.  An interesting situation, I think!

More…

To read entire report, click here

 

How to cite this report: Shepherd, M. (2019).  August 2019 UK Project Management Roundup, PM World Journal, Vol. VIII, Issue VII, August.  Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/pmwj84-Aug2019-Shepherd-UK-Project-Management-RoundUp.pdf

 


 

About the Author


Miles Shepherd

Salisbury, UK

 

 

 

Miles Shepherd is an executive editorial advisor and international correspondent for PM World Journal in the United Kingdom. He is also managing director for MS Projects Ltd, a consulting company supporting various UK and overseas Government agencies, nuclear industry organisations and other businesses.  Miles has over 30 years’ experience on a variety of projects in UK, Eastern Europe and Russia.  His PM experience includes defence, major IT projects, decommissioning of nuclear reactors, nuclear security, rail and business projects for the UK Government and EU.   Past Chair and Fellow of the Association for Project Management (APM), Miles is also past president and chair and a Fellow of the International Project Management Association (IPMA).  He is currently a Director for PMI’s Global Accreditation Centre and is immediate past Chair of the ISO committee developing new international standards for Project Management and for Program/Portfolio Management.  He was involved in setting up APM’s team developing guidelines for project management oversight and governance.  Miles is based in Salisbury, England and can be contacted at miles.shepherd@msp-ltd.co.uk.

To view other works by Miles Shepherd, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/miles-shepherd/.