Working in the shadows

Exposing our inner demons

 

Advances in Project Management

SERIES ARTICLE

By Prof Darren Dalcher

Director, National Centre for Project Management

United Kingdom

 



Last month’s column focused on the complexity of the terrain and the difficulty in mapping and making sense of the full scale of reality. An earlier article focused on creation of a culture of cooperation between different disciplines. This article shifts attention to the complexity of individuals, and the cultures and organisations within which they operate. In particular, it highlights the role of light and shadows in determining what we can see and do.

Shadows may conjure up childhood images of playful finger and hand shapes of animals and magical creatures projected onto a wall in front of a torch, flashlight or fire, or perhaps invoke memories of elongated shapes manipulated at dusk, which lengthen as the twilight descends, until they are subsumed by the surrounding darkness when the sun is no longer visible.

The Oxford Dictionary offers two pertinent definitions: ‘a dark area or shape produced by a body coming between rays of light and a surface’, or, a term ‘used in reference to proximity, ominous oppressiveness, or sadness and gloom’. Upon reflection it thus becomes possible to focus on two main types of shadows:

  • The darkness that forms: the former description offered by the Oxford Dictionary refers to the shadow created when an opaque, or translucent, object casts a shadow, as it does not allow the light project projected from a source to pass straight through it.
  • The darkness that lurks: The latter definition acknowledges a more profound phenomena that could refer to a shadow of war impacting a country; a shadow of performance-enhancing drugs that blights a particular sport; a shadow cast by pests, vermin or disease, or some other threat; or even a more ominous shadow in the mind that encases the soul in darkness. Certain cultures, religions and mythologies also associate shadows with ghosts, demons or the underworld.

The common feature across both types of shadow is the absence of light, which manifests itself as a certain kind of emerging darkness.

Searching under the lamppost

Light seems to play an important part in driving local inquiry and emboldening the search for knowledge, while shadows and darkness, stifle the local search.

There is an old parable and joke about a police officer who observes a drunken man furiously searching under a streetlight. After a few minutes the police officer approaches to discover that the man had lost his house keys. The officer joins the search, as they both thoroughly and systematically comb the area underneath the streetlight. After repeating the search three or four times, the police officer asks the man if he is absolutely certain he lost the keys there, to which the man replies, ‘no, I lost them over there in the park’.

The officer proceeds to ask why he is searching in that particular spot, and the man replies that ‘this is where the light is

Searching under the lamppost is also known as ‘the streetlight effect’ or the drunkard’s search. It was popularised by Abraham Kaplan (1964), and has become an increasingly acknowledged and recognised observational bias where people search by looking in the easiest places. Farris (1969) observes that no matter where behavioural scientists have dropped their keys, they prefer to continue to search for them where it appears lighter, while Freedman maintains that ‘researchers tend to look for answers where the looking is good, rather than where the answers are likely to be hiding’ (2010).

The temptation to look under the light, where it is easier to organise a search, continues to appeal to many disciplines (see for example, Shanto & William, 1993; McKenna et al., 2008). Indeed, Noam Chomsky dryly reasons in a 1993 letter that ‘Science is a bit like the joke about the drunk who is looking under a lamppost for a key that he has lost on the other side of the street, because that’s where the light is. It has no other choice.’ (reported in, Barsky, 1998; p. 95)

More…

To read entire article, click here

 

Editor’s note: The PMWJ Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books published by Gower and other publishers in the Routledge family.  Each month an introduction to the current article is provided by series editor Prof Darren Dalcher, who is also the editor of the Gower/Routledge Advances in Project Management series of books on new and emerging concepts in PM.  Prof Dalcher’s article is an introduction to the invited paper this month in the PMWJ. 


 
About the Author


Darren Dalcher, PhD

Author, Professor, Series Editor
Director, National Centre for Project Management
United Kingdom

 


Darren Dalcher
, Ph.D. HonFAPM, FRSA, FBCS, CITP, FCMI SMIEEE SFHEA is Professor of Project Management, and founder and Director of the National Centre for Project Management (NCPM) in the UK.  He has been named by the Association for Project Management (APM) as one of the top 10 “movers and shapers” in project management and was voted Project Magazine’s “Academic of the Year” for his contribution in “integrating and weaving academic work with practice”. Following industrial and consultancy experience in managing IT projects, Professor Dalcher gained his PhD in Software Engineering from King’s College, University of London.

Professor Dalcher has written over 200 papers and book chapters on project management and software engineering. He is Editor-in-Chief of Journal of Software: Evolution and Process, a leading international software engineering journal. He is the editor of the book series, Advances in Project Management, published by Routledge and of the companion series Fundamentals of Project Management.  Heavily involved in a variety of research projects and subjects, Professor Dalcher has built a reputation as leader and innovator in the areas of practice-based education and reflection in project management. He works with many major industrial and commercial organisations and government bodies.

Darren is an Honorary Fellow of the APM, a Chartered Fellow of the British Computer Society, a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, and the Royal Society of Arts, A Senior Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a Member of the Project Management Institute (PMI) and the British Academy of Management. He is a Chartered IT Practitioner. He sits on numerous senior research and professional boards, including The PMI Academic Member Advisory Group, the APM Research Advisory Group, the CMI Academic Council and the APM Group Ethics and Standards Governance Board.  He is the Academic Advisor and Consulting Editor for the next APM Body of Knowledge. Prof Dalcher is an academic advisor for the PM World Journal.  He can be contacted at [email protected]

To view other works by Prof Darren Dalcher, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/darren-dalcher/.

 

 

Shadow Working in Project Management

Towards new levels of consciousness in groups

 

Advances in Project Management Series

SERIES ARTICLE

By Joana Bértholo, PhD

Portugal

 


                                                        

 ‘I have yet to meet the famous Rational Economic Man theorists describe. Real people have always done inexplicable things from time to time, and they show no sign of stopping.

— Charles Sanford Jr., US business executive, quoted in Ket De Vries, M. (2003; p. 1)

The book Shadow Working in Project Management (Bértholo, 2017) is the result of a research project undertaken from 2009 to 2014. It tells the story of an experiential autoethnography, the Learning Journey, which sought methods to address unconscious and subconscious traits as they manifest in groups/projects. After this Journey, the author was equipped to return to the literature in project management and explore the implications of the Shadow, to try to answer the main research question – What are the most prevailing Shadows in project management culture? For that, some auxiliary questions had to be addressed, namely

  • What is the Shadow and how does it play out in the life of projects?
  • To what extent and in what way is project management influenced by unconscious factors in its practice and culture?
  • To what extent is the manager’s role the fulfilment of a psychological projection or an archetype?
  • In what ways is the Shadow related to personal development and organizational change?

The varied answers draw a map of the dominant Shadow-issues in project management practice and culture.  In the forward to the book Resonant Leadership, Goleman (2005; p. x) writes that: ‘The first task in management has nothing to do with leading others; step one poses the challenge of knowing and managing oneself’.

Management is not limited to outer circumstances and resources. Fundamental processes are happening within. Through internal management, the experience of the manager is less an outcome and more a process. Any situation becomes: ‘an encounter with the grander, more complex system described by the new sciences and the organizational systems literature. It also demystifies the relationship to this vast unknown, depotentiates the need for willful control over the environment and over other people in other roles.’ (Jones, 2004). These quotes illustrate some guidelines to the research. In addition, important premises were:

–        The existence of an unconscious realm;

–        The project manager as someone who participates in a shared psychological structure wherein unconscious factors play a significant role;

–        Individuals deny traits that belong to them, but which stand as a threat to their sense of self or ego identity;

–        These denied traits appear projected in the external environment and create conflict and tension;

–        The collective in itself as a source of tension between individual and collective needs;

The consequences are manifold. The way a project manager handles a situation cannot be solely attributed to personality, nor is it merely a result of acquired competencies and learned conduct. These rational aspects, although they are ever present, are in fact in relation to a larger totality. The Shadow is a permanent part of that larger totality, and it comes up generally through conflict or emotionally charged situations; in lack of drive or motivation; addictive and compulsive behaviour occurs, sensations of strong instability; somatic bodily symptoms, diseases, nervous ticks, allergies, and all sorts of bodily manifestations, among other forms the Shadow has to show itself.

What is outside of awareness plays out in our everyday lives (see Freud, Jung, Wilber, Zweig). Projection and transference mechanisms are the central mechanisms by which the Shadow manifests. These terms have been retrieved from the somewhat obscure jargon of the analyst or the psychologist and are being integrated in popular discourse, as well as in PM theory. Bowles defined the Organization Shadow as the ‘facts which organizations wish to deny about themselves, due to the threat posed to self-image and self-understanding and, more generally, the need to be viewed in a favourable light by others.’ (Bowles, 1991; p. 387). It is a useful extrapolation of the definition of the individual Shadow. When we speak about the Shadow of a project we are speaking about the Shadow of that project’s active culture at play, in the sense of its values, norms, etc. Different projects carry different Shadows, and the quest for a Shadow-free project is fruitless, as is the quest for a Shadow-free human being.

We all carry Shadows, they change through time, but they are not something we can get rid off, they are something we can be aware of and that can lead us to a more mindful life. According to Jung (1966; pp. 284-5) ‘[The Shadow is] the thing a person has no wish to be. It is everything that the subject refuses to acknowledge about himself and yet is always thrusting itself upon him – for instance inferior traits of character and other incompatible tendencies.’ The Shadow is that about ourselves we find unpleasant or unbearable. It contains aspects that appear contrary to the ego ideal or to the ego identity. Therefore, it becomes a reservoir of untapped potential, rich in raw emotions and primal drives, the disavowed, poorly developed and undervalued contents of the individual psyche – but also our highest morality, creativity, and power (the Light Shadow). When the disliked qualities are removed from view (positive or negative traits) they are also removed from supervision. They do not stop existing. Instead, they play out in unpredictable ways, usually erupting unexpectedly, potentially in hurtful forms to self or others. Afterwards, a deep sense of humiliation, shame, or guilt can be experienced. These are clear Shadow-pointers. “Confrontation with the shadow produces at first a dead balance, a standstill that hampers moral decisions and makes convictions ineffective or even impossible. Everything becomes doubtful.” (Jung, 1963; para 708).

More…

To read entire article, click here

 

Editor’s note: The Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books previously published by Gower in UK and now by Routledge worldwide. Information about Routledge project management books can be found here.



About the Author


Joana Bértholo, PhD

Portugal

 

 

 

Joana Bértholo is a researcher, novelist and playwright. She first attended the Fine-Arts in Portugal, with a focus on Communication Design, and later obtained a PhD in Cultural Studies in Germany. Art processes are her preferred mode of research, using writing as a platform to investigate a wide scope of interests, such as technology, ecology, sustainability and the darker aspects of groups and communities.

Joana Bértholo is the author of Shadow Working in Project Management: Understanding and Addressing the Irrational and Unconscious in Groups, published by Routledge, ©2018

 

 

Choosing to Change

 

Advances in Project Management

SERIES ARTICLE

By David Bentley

United Kingdom

 



The profession of project management is in its widest sense that of facilitating change. Whatever the context, it is essentially a process of creating something new from an existing situation. How we should best manage the process of change and create the best possible outcome has exercised management thinking for many decades.

It is one of the eternal paradoxes of life, that through the ages we constantly seek the security of continuity, sticking to the status quo, whilst life, and the world that we live in, inevitably changes. Politicians and financiers call for stability in the economy, markets and international relations knowing full well that it can’t and does not happen. Harold MacMillan, UK Prime Minister 1957-63, is reputed to have answered the question put to him by a journalist ‘What is most likely to blow governments off course?’ saying ‘Events, dear boy, events’. The exact words spoken and indeed the attribution is questioned, but the observation is clear. The best formulated policies and detailed planning will always be victim to the unpredictable. The events that continually emerge creating unexpected change.

Over the course of the past half century I have witnessed a rapid and accelerating pace of change. In technology, the advent of the computer and the revolution in access to information through the internet. In transport, from the post war spread of the motor car replacing horse drawn transport to the prospect of driverless cars and in health, evidenced by the extension of life expectancy. In all areas of modern life, we are constantly experiencing change but still we tend to be taken by surprise when it happens and resist it happening.

My professional career has been spent managing many facets of change. As a construction project manager I was involved in the planning and creating of change. Whilst it was, on the face of it, the physical change of building roads, utility plants and buildings, it was in fact that, most of my time in that role, was spent dealing with the unexpected. However detailed the planning and scheduling of the works a three-dimensional structure is being created from a two-dimensional plan or nowadays perhaps a virtual image. The interpretation of the detail required will always mean that the building created is emergent from those plans and change will be an integral part of the process. The time spent on crafting contracts and resolving disputes arising from the changes that happen are testament to that. Working now in organisational change the same applies. We can plan the change in great detail and strive to make the communication of the change as clear and widespread as possible. We can follow the latest model for change management but the unexpected will always happen. People will react in unpredictable ways. Sometimes resisting change that would appear, on the face of it, to be of clear benefit to them. Other times changing in ways that they did not expect themselves and being highly successful.

Whilst pursuing my career in change management I have been challenged to radically change my views on the nature of organisations. To re-evaluate what I was doing when planning a construction project and how I understood the reactions of the people that I was working with and the cultural changes. By chance I happened to choose to do an MBA course at the University of Hertfordshire that included taking a view of management theory that was developing out of complexity theory. A view that accepts unpredictability, takes human interaction as the basis of organisation and pays attention to what is actually happening rather than creating a model of what we think should be happening. It is in taking this complexity-based view that provides us with an understanding of what motivates people to accept or reject change. Providing an approach to managing change that works with individuals to make the choice to change and determines the way that change happens.

The mainstream approach to contemporary management and organisational theory that has been developed over the course of the twentieth century is founded on the application of scientific research principles. That is, by conducting experiments, taking measurements and analysing data we can come to a theory of how something works and then use that knowledge to predict and influence what may happen in the future. The ultimate assumption of this way of thinking being that, given sufficient time and research effort we will eventually discover the ‘theory of everything’ that will enable us to control our destiny.

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Editor’s note: The Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books previously published by Gower in UK and now by Routledge worldwide. Information about Routledge project management books can be found here.



About the Author


David Bentley

Author, Business Consultant
United Kingdom

 


David Bentley has many years of experience working in business planning and improvement through change management at the corporate level both in the private sector and embedded with public sector organisations, with a multi-national engineering consulting company and more recently in delivering organisational and cultural change programmes as an independent consultant.

As a Chartered Civil Engineer, his background is in construction planning and managing projects in the highways, water and power sectors. Working on the introduction of IT systems and quality management led to a career in business and change management and a Director level position with a major international engineering consultant, working on highways network management, in the UK and Australia.

Supported by an MBA and a PhD in Business David has strong leadership experience with teams of change agents and working to deliver significant benefits in business development and cultural improvement. Working in SHEQ management and business improvement for DownerMouchel in Perth, Western Australia, embedded in the state roads authority, Mainroads WA, involved bringing together a team from multiple ethnic backgrounds and melding the public and private sector ethos into an effective working team. David’s particular skills in training and coaching in management, systems development, process mapping and improvement, procedure development, audit and systems accreditation inform David’s approach to successful change delivery.

David’s work as an independent business consultant has involved a diverse range of organisations from providing business planning and support to local charity groups through small not-for-profit organisations to transformation projects for global companies and the provision of management training in the nuclear reclamation sector.

Recent project work brought together David’s range of skills. Providing management training, process improvement and procedure development and performance management was combined with his experience in culture change and mentoring to help in the delivery of significant financial returns, team working and individual performance. Most recent work has included advising on strategic direction, business development and implementing performance improvement strategies for a global support services business.

David is also the author of ‘Choosing to Change – an alternative understanding of Change Management’, published by Routledge, ISBN-10 1138237892 in 2018.

 

 

The map is not the territory

Musings on complexity, people and models

 

Advances in Project Management

SERIES ARTICLE

By Prof Darren Dalcher

Director, National Centre for Project Management

United Kingdom

 



In a recent article, we explored the potential use of a map in enabling decisions and facilitating forward movement and progress, even in a foggy or highly challenging contexts. The point made was that the process of mapping, as opposed to blindly following a map, enables reasoning and adjustments to emerge so that corrections can facilitate improved performance and a more purposeful journey.

Indeed, mapping and navigation provide the basis for a journey into less certain and less recognisable terrains, with a general goal or overarching purpose’ (Dalcher, 2018; p. 6).

This article explores the issues related to both maps and mapping in complex and unpredictable terrains.

So what is the problem with maps?

Maps have been in use for centuries. The Oxford Dictionary defines a map as a ‘diagrammatic representation of an area of land or sea showing physical features, cities, roads, etc.’, implying that they offer a depiction or a picture of the earth.

Maps are known to represent key facts, often extending beyond location information to feature temperature, rainfall, prosperity, education or any other pertinent facet or feature. Maps are thus utilised to emphasise particular relationships that the cartographers consider to be of interest. Consequently, it is important that the users recognise the intended purpose of a given map and select an appropriate type (e.g. physical, political, geological, climatic, relief, thematic, topographical, economic, resource, road, navigational chart), projection (cylindrical, pseudo-cylindrical, conic, azimuthal, gnomonic, etc.), and scale. In other words, the choice of a map needs to be fit for the observational or navigational purpose and the expected goal.

People utilise maps for many varied reasons, including (Hessler, 2015):

  • To find their way
  • To assert ownership
  • To record human activity
  • To establish control
  • To encourage settlement
  • To plan military campaigns
  • To demonstrate political power

While maps have enabled humans to comprehend their surrounding environment, they have also played a critical part in labelling, establishing and claiming power across neighbours, regions and resources. Hessler’s list of reasons seems to comprise only a single item focused on guiding the journey. Indeed, Rankin (2016) reasons that maps provide the means for governments to understand, manage and defend their territory, pointing out that during the two world wars maps were produced by the hundreds of millions. Barber and Harper (2010) note that maps use size and beauty to convey messages of status and power, while Monmonier (2010) observes that some maps control behaviour by providing the basis for regulating some activities and prohibiting others (for example, by designating residential zones and locating chemical plants outside cities).

Maps hold immense value, and are often taken to be a rational, unbiased and objective representation of reality. However, Wood (1992) asserts that maps, like photographs, represent a subjective point of view. King (1996) concludes that there can be no such thing as an objective map reproducing a pre-existing reality, as powerful choices will always have to be made about what to represent and how, and what to exclude. Black (2000) affirms that maps are coloured by the political purposes of their makers, therefore arguing that map-making and map-using cannot be divorced from aspects of the politics of representation. Monmonier (2014) maintains that maps lie, and the choices that mapmakers make – either consciously or unconsciously – mean that a map, far from being objective, can present only one version out of the range of possible stories about the places it depicts.

Why is Europe at the top half of maps and Africa at the bottom? Although we are accustomed to that convention, it is, in fact, a politically motivated, almost entirely subjective way of depicting a ball spinning in space. As The Power of Projections teaches us, maps do not portray reality, only interpretations of it. To begin with, they are two-dimensional projections of a three-dimensional, spherical Earth. Add to that the fact that every map is made for a purpose and its design tends to reflect that purpose. Finally, a map is often a psychological projection of the historical, political, and cultural values of the cartographer-or of the nation, person or organization for which the map was created.’ (Klinghoffer, 2006, back cover)

More…

To read entire article, click here


Editor’s note: The PMWJ Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books published by Routledge. Each month an introduction to the current article is provided by series editor Prof Darren Dalcher, who is also the editor of the Gower/Routledge Advances in Project Management series of books on new and emerging concepts in PM. Prof Dalcher’s article is an introduction to the invited paper this month in the PMWJ.



About the Author


Darren Dalcher, PhD

Author, Professor, Series Editor
Director, National Centre for Project Management
United Kingdom

 


Darren Dalcher
, Ph.D. HonFAPM, FRSA, FBCS, CITP, FCMI SMIEEE SFHEA is Professor of Project Management, and founder and Director of the National Centre for Project Management (NCPM) in the UK. He has been named by the Association for Project Management (APM) as one of the top 10 “movers and shapers” in project management and was voted Project Magazine’s “Academic of the Year” for his contribution in “integrating and weaving academic work with practice”. Following industrial and consultancy experience in managing IT projects, Professor Dalcher gained his PhD in Software Engineering from King’s College, University of London.

Professor Dalcher has written over 200 papers and book chapters on project management and software engineering. He is Editor-in-Chief of Journal of Software: Evolution and Process, a leading international software engineering journal. He is the editor of the book series, Advances in Project Management, published by Routledge and of the companion series Fundamentals of Project Management. Heavily involved in a variety of research projects and subjects, Professor Dalcher has built a reputation as leader and innovator in the areas of practice-based education and reflection in project management. He works with many major industrial and commercial organisations and government bodies.

Darren is an Honorary Fellow of the APM, a Chartered Fellow of the British Computer Society, a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, and the Royal Society of Arts, A Senior Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a Member of the Project Management Institute (PMI) and the British Academy of Management. He is a Chartered IT Practitioner. He sits on numerous senior research and professional boards, including The PMI Academic Member Advisory Group, the APM Research Advisory Group, the CMI Academic Council and the APM Group Ethics and Standards Governance Board. He is the Academic Advisor and Consulting Editor for the next APM Body of Knowledge. Prof Dalcher is an academic advisor for the PM World Journal. He can be contacted at [email protected].

To view other works by Prof Darren Dalcher, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/darren-dalcher/.

 

 

Strategy as learning to discover the way forward

Advances in Project Management

SERIES ARTICLE

By Prof Darren Dalcher, PhD

Director, National Centre for Project Management
University of Hertfordshire

United Kingdom

 



The term strategy appears to be amongst the 1,000 most commonly used words in the English language (EF, 2017), particularly in a business context; yet it can still have a multitude of alterative meanings. The Oxford English Dictionary defines strategy as: ‘a plan of action designed to achieve a long-term or overall aim’; whilst also offering an alternative definition as ‘the art of planning and directing overall military operations and movements in a war or battle’. The Cambridge English Dictionary meanwhile offers a single, more all-encompassing definition in the form of  ‘a detailed plan for achieving success in situations such as war, politics, business, industry, or sport, or the skill of planning for such situations.

The most common definitions of strategy found in the literature include the following:

The determination of the basic long-term goals and objectives of an enterprise, and the adoption of courses of action and the allocation of resources necessary for those goals.’ (Chandler, 1962; p. 13)

Essentially, developing a competitive strategy is developing a broad formula for how a business is going to compete, what its goals should be, and what policies will be needed to carry out those goals.’ (Porter, 1980; p. xvi)

The definitions above, while emerging almost two decades apart, point to a few essential themes:

  • Strategies focus on the (long term) future and the goals that can be reached as part of that future
  • Strategies determine the goals and objectives that will be pursued
  • The key concern is around the achievement of these goals
  • Resources are therefore allocated, and actions carried out, specifically in order to enable the actions required to facilitate the goals
  • Business environments are competitive, implying that some organisations will fare better while others may not succeed
  • Consequently, given the focus, long term impact and competitiveness, determining the strategies is a critically important and defining function of top management

The term strategy has been in use for centuries. Bracker (1980; p. 219) identifies the etymological origin of the word, from the Greek Strategos, “a general”, which in turn, comes from roots meaning “army” and “lead”, as befitting the second definition offered by the Oxford Dictionary.

The Greek verb stratego means to “plan the destruction of one’s enemies through effective use of resources”. The concept of strategy in a military or political context has remained prominent throughout history, and has been discussed by such major writers as Shakespeare, Montesquieu, Kant, Mill, Hegel, Calusewitz, Liddell Hart and Tolstoy.’ (ibid.)

Carter, Clegg and Kornberger (2010; p. 2) observe that the idea of strategy can be traced back to the early writings on military strategy by Sun Tzu, whose work, The art of war, is often said to mark the birth of the discipline. Other military tacticians expanded on the idea of the strategy of war.

Strategy is the employment of the battle to gain the end of the War; it must therefore give an aim to the whole military action; in other words, Strategy forms the plan of the War, and to this end it links together the series of acts which are to lead to the final decision, that, is to say, it makes the plans for the separate campaigns and regulates the combats to be fought in each.’ (Von Clausewitz, 1940; p. 79)

Given the competitive nature of the business environment and the need to succeed in the long term, business schools appear to have extended the war analogy and adopted the notion of competitive strategy, replacing the adversarial enemy, with the seemingly less sinister, yet equally cunning, cold and calculating entity known as business competition.

More…

To read entire article, click here

 

Editor’s note: The PMWJ Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books published by Gower and other publishers in the Routledge family.  Each month an introduction to the current article is provided by series editor Prof Darren Dalcher, who is also the editor of the Gower/Routledge Advances in Project Management series of books on new and emerging concepts in PM.  Prof Dalcher’s article is an introduction to the invited paper this month in the PMWJ. 



About the Author


Darren Dalcher, PhD

Series Editor
Director, National Centre for Project Management
University of Hertfordshire, UK

 

 

Darren Dalcher, Ph.D. HonFAPM, FRSA, FBCS, CITP, FCMI, SMIEEE, SFHEA is Professor of Project Management at the University of Hertfordshire, and founder and Director of the National Centre for Project Management (NCPM) in the UK.  He has been named by the Association for Project Management (APM) as one of the top 10 “movers and shapers” in project management in 2008 and was voted Project Magazine’s “Academic of the Year” for his contribution in “integrating and weaving academic work with practice”. In October 2011 he was awarded a prestigious lifetime Honorary Fellowship from the Association for Project Management for outstanding contribution to the discipline of project management. Following industrial and consultancy experience in managing IT projects, Professor Dalcher gained his PhD in Software Engineering from King’s College, University of London.

Professor Dalcher has delivered lectures and courses in many leading institutions worldwide, and has won multiple awards and prizes. He has written over 200 papers and book chapters on project management and software engineering and published over 30 books. He is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Software: Evolution and Process published by John Wiley. He is the editor of the book series, Advances in Project Management, published by Routledge and of the companion series, Fundamentals of Project Management. Heavily involved in a variety of research projects and subjects, Professor Dalcher has built a reputation as leader and innovator in the areas of practice-based education and reflection in project management. He works with many major industrial and commercial organisations and government bodies in the UK and beyond.

Darren is an Honorary Fellow of the APM, a Chartered Fellow of the British Computer Society, a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, and the Royal Society of Arts, a Senior Member of the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers, a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a Member of the Project Management Institute (PMI), the Academy of Management, and the British Academy of Management. He is a Chartered IT Practitioner. He is a Member of the PMI Advisory Board responsible for the prestigious David I. Cleland project management award and of the APM Professional Development Board.  Prof Dalcher is an academic advisor for the PM World Journal.  He can be contacted at [email protected].

To see other works by Prof Darren Dalcher, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/darren-dalcher/.

 

 

How strategy happens

Advances in Project Management Series

SERIES ARTICLE

David Booth

United Kingdom

 



An introductory tale

The pressure was on. A major new Division of a large international company had just been set up with great expectations, and as the new executive team got to work, the cry went up ‘we need a strategic plan!’.

External help was sought, and a parade of management consultancies presented their recommendations for how the new organisation should go about developing this within the tight timescale set out in the brief: there were detailed project plans specifying what had to be achieved by when, with week by week deliverables, critical deadlines, templates and outline document formats – all very logical and thorough, and appropriately ambitious, and a stack of impressively prepared proposal documents built up in the file.

But one consultant walked into the Boardroom with just a blank sheet of paper, sat down and asked ‘So what precisely do you want to achieve?’ Out of the ensuing discussion came the realisation that – despite the agreed formal brief – those in the room had widely differing views about the new organisation. More talking, and some listening.  Another blank piece of paper – this time flipchart-sized – and a marker pen. Discussion, clarification, different views. The 30 minutes ‘credentials and presentation’ slot became two hours of intense communication, at the end of which there was a simple sketched flipchart diagram mapping out how we were going to begin to address some of the issues. The organisation’s strategy journey had started, not as a result of some detailed project plan, but from people talking and – importantly – listening, to achieve a common understanding of the challenges and how they were going to work together to address them.

The traditional ‘textbook’ approach to strategic planning is a structured process of working methodically through stages of analysis, consideration of strategy options and consequent decisions, and then the equally crucial challenge of implementation, setting up a programme of strategic projects ranging in nature from IT to organisational change – a linear, logical sequence by which an organisation determines its direction and intended destination and marshals its resources to achieve this. Such formal strategic planning processes were adopted widely in the 1970s, with organisations following a series of neatly defined steps to produce a detailed ‘5 Year Plan’ which was then implemented through a structured project programme. But the world – industries, markets, businesses – has moved on since those days when relative stability meant that ambitions could be realised through sustained implementation projects delivered over extended periods; the increasing pace of change (a cliché perhaps, but its perceived veracity is sufficient to drive organisational attitudes) means that such a planned approach to developing and implementing strategies seems outmoded, a resource-intensive process whose determined outcomes are seldom delivered successfully before being overtaken by events.

The emphasis on rapid change has led to the adoption of a more dynamic approach to the development and implementation of strategy, with an emphasis on adaptability and organisational agility to react rapidly to changing circumstances or emerging opportunitiesi.

Starting points and journeys

What prompts an organisation to develop a strategic plan? Every organisation’s circumstances and rationale will be different. However, it might be helpful to consider two questions: a) what has prompted the decision to embark on that particular strategy journey, and b) what is determining the principal approach that is driving this?

To illustrate this, consider four scenarios:

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Editor’s note: The Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books previously published by Gower in UK and now by Routledge worldwide. Information about Routledge project management books can be found here.



About the Author


David Booth

United Kingdom

 

 

 

David Booth has over 20 years of business management experience working for companies such as United Biscuits, Grand Metropolitan and Smith & Nephew, in marketing and then HR and strategic development at the senior management level, followed by working for the past 16 years as an independent management consultant helping organisations with their ‘strategy journeys’: clients include a range of large and medium-sized organisations from international financial services companies to specialist NHS Foundation Trusts. These projects have involved working intensively with client organisations, guiding and complementing their internal knowledge and resources to help steer their strategic planning processes and develop effective strategic plans: there has been a strong emphasis on organisational learning, and clients have remarked on the continuing value and relevance of the work.

He is author of Strategy Journeys – a guide to effective strategic planning (Routledge, ©2017) which aims to demystify the concept of strategic planning by propounding a ‘first principles’ approach to help those leading organisations work out where to start and what approach to take to steer their own organisation’s ‘strategy journey’.

 

 

Why culture really matters

The hidden perils of acculturation

 

Advances in Project Management

SERIES ARTICLE

By Prof Darren Dalcher

Director, National Centre for Project Management

University of Hertfordshire

United Kingdom

 



According to the Merriam Webster Dictionary, acculturation is defined as the cultural modification of an individual, group, or people by adapting to or borrowing traits from another culture. The phenomenon refers to the cultural change that stems from intentional blending between cultures, which aims to alter a pre-existing perspective, approach or way of thinking and replace it with a preferred, and more highly valued alternative response pattern.

A ‘giant’ new kid on the block

The 1984 breakup of AT&T in the US, resulted in the creation of seven independent telecoms companies that were formed from the original twenty-two AT&T controlled members of the Bell system. Pacific Bell, controlled by the holding group, Pacific Telesis Group, was considered by many to be the weakest of the emerging new organisations.

“Of all the Bell regional holding companies, Pacific Telephone holds the most risk for investors. The company’s record of poor earnings and its long-running feud with the California Public Utilities Commission make it a risky investment at best.” New York Times, 1985

Finding itself within the new and fiercely competitive Californian telecommunications marketplace, Bell Pacific had to reform itself into a savvy and successful organisation, much removed from its Bell origins. Bell Pacific launched aggressive marketing campaigns to capture a significant share of the burgeoning market. However, the company quickly found itself enmeshed in controversy for selling unneeded telephone services to non-English speaking customers who did not understand what they were buying. As tales of the dubious sales tactics of the company became public knowledge, morale within the organisation plummeted and its reputation, increasingly on par with that of a dubious used car dealership, also took a hit (Kirp, 1989).

Bell Pacific decided to turn its attention to transforming the organisation into a modern and efficient conglomerate. Modernising the company would require the shaking up of its massive workforce of 62,000 workers and drastically reshuffling the rigidly hierarchical structure, described as a steep pyramid with 14 very precisely delineated levels.

In search of a new culture

More crucially, management also targeted the total transformation of the culture within the organisation. They were worried that Pacific Bell did not have the right culture and competitive attitude and concerned that employees were not sufficiently entrepreneurial for the corporation to be able to succeed in its new environment.

Looking for direction, they turned to a well-known, local Californian recluse and organisational development consultant, Charles Krone. Years earlier, Krone made his fame as an internal specialist within the Proctor & Gamble soap division, for which he set up a liquid detergent plant in Lima, Ohio, that outperformed every other soap plant in the company (Rose, 1990). His counterpart, Herb Stokes, who had since become a corporate consultant and rancher in Abilene, Texas — led a similarly successful effort at a P&G paper products plant he organised in Albany, Georgia. Krone’s methodology was based on a mélange of systems theory, socio-tech thinking, sufi mysticism and the writing of 20th Century Armenian Mystic George I. Gurdieff who believed that most humans spent their days in ‘waking sleep’ and that is only by shedding ingrained habits of thinking that individuals could liberate their inner potential.

Krone’s work was supposed to teach people to think more precisely, but it was jargon-laden and off-putting (Rose, 1990). Pacific Bell contracted with two associates of Charles Krone for $40 million worth of leadership development and personal-growth training (Kirp, 1989), to acculturate the workforce and embed the new culture. Some reports suggest that the full figure was closer to $147 million…

More…

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Editor’s note: The PMWJ Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books published by Gower and other publishers in the Routledge family.  Each month an introduction to the current article is provided by series editor Prof Darren Dalcher, who is also the editor of the Gower/Routledge Advances in Project Management series of books on new and emerging concepts in PM.  Prof Dalcher’s article is an introduction to the invited paper this month in the PMWJ. 



About the Author


Darren Dalcher, PhD

Series Editor
Director, National Centre for Project Management
University of Hertfordshire, UK

 

 

Darren Dalcher, Ph.D. HonFAPM, FRSA, FBCS, CITP, FCMI, SMIEEE, SFHEA is Professor of Project Management at the University of Hertfordshire, and founder and Director of the National Centre for Project Management (NCPM) in the UK.  He has been named by the Association for Project Management (APM) as one of the top 10 “movers and shapers” in project management in 2008 and was voted Project Magazine’s “Academic of the Year” for his contribution in “integrating and weaving academic work with practice”. In October 2011 he was awarded a prestigious lifetime Honorary Fellowship from the Association for Project Management for outstanding contribution to the discipline of project management. Following industrial and consultancy experience in managing IT projects, Professor Dalcher gained his PhD in Software Engineering from King’s College, University of London.

Professor Dalcher has delivered lectures and courses in many leading institutions worldwide, and has won multiple awards and prizes. He has written over 200 papers and book chapters on project management and software engineering and published over 30 books. He is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Software: Evolution and Process published by John Wiley. He is the editor of the book series, Advances in Project Management, published by Routledge and of the companion series, Fundamentals of Project Management. Heavily involved in a variety of research projects and subjects, Professor Dalcher has built a reputation as leader and innovator in the areas of practice-based education and reflection in project management. He works with many major industrial and commercial organisations and government bodies in the UK and beyond.

Darren is an Honorary Fellow of the APM, a Chartered Fellow of the British Computer Society, a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, and the Royal Society of Arts, a Senior Member of the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers, a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a Member of the Project Management Institute (PMI), the Academy of Management, and the British Academy of Management. He is a Chartered IT Practitioner. He is a Member of the PMI Advisory Board responsible for the prestigious David I. Cleland project management award and of the APM Professional Development Board.  Prof Dalcher is an academic advisor for the PM World Journal.  He can be contacted at [email protected].

To see other works by Prof Darren Dalcher, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/darren-dalcher/.

 

 

Creating a culture of partnership

between Project Management and Change Management

 

Advances in Project Management Series

SERIES ARTICLE

By Gabrielle O’Donovan

Dublin, Ireland

 



The dismal results achieved by organizational change initiatives over the past decades drive home the need for a step change in how we deliver projects. We can no longer be satisfied to hop along with a ‘one-legged approach’, where only Project Management methodologies are used or, alternatively, limp along with Project Management in the driving seat and Change Management playing second fiddle. Rather, a firm-footed ‘two-legged approach’ to project delivery, that employs both Project Management and Change Management methodologies and expertise, will enable projects to stride forward in confidence and derive business benefits. Achieving this requires the thoughtful integration of Project Management and Change Management methodologies throughout the end-to-end project lifecycle, and the cultivation of a culture of partnership between Project Managers and Change Managers – a twenty-first century solution to a twenty-first century problem.

The current disconnect between Project Management and Change Management feeds the well-documented projects failure rate (40–70 per cent), and the laying of many a dud egg.  While much work has been done in recent times to try to address this issue, cross-discipline integration efforts thus far have only touched the tip of the iceberg (policies, practices, and processes), ignoring that below-the-surface subterranean cultural component that can divide or unite project teams. An effective joint value proposition between Project Management and Change Management must incorporate both perspectives.  By way of an example, on any given project team shared assumptions drive the expression of shared attitudes and behaviours.  These in turn impact what gets done and what doesn’t, and cultural assumptions at play are reflected in project outcomes and results. For instance, if the project team holds a shared assumption that successful measurement of project delivery is simply ‘on time, on scope and on budget’, they will not appreciate the need to secure end-user adoption of new ways of working, and are likely to see the work of Change Managers early on in the project cycle as little more than interference and a distraction. They may rationalize this mind-set by saying, ‘If we don’t have a system, we won’t need users to be on board.’ Where this assumption is in action below the surface, strategies and plans that involve Project Managers’ cooperation with Change Managers early in the project cycle (e.g. to agree how the end user will be impacted) may prove very difficult to implement, and undermine business benefits realization.

Making Culture Explicit and Measureable

Because mapping any given culture could be a never-ending task, it is essential to define the parameters of such work. Context is one such parameter and the context here is ‘the integration of Project Management and Change Management methodologies for projects’. The other parameter I am employing is a three-part framework designed by Edgar Schein, Professor Emeritus, MIT, on those universal ‘problems’ or challenges that organizations face:

  1. Deepest assumptions about universal macro issues.
  2. The second part of the framework considers those challenges that the organization faces as it adapts to its external environment. My new additions supplementing Schein’s original list include getting consensus on the ‘shared approach to problem solving’, and ‘shared approach to risks and issues resolution’ – challenges that are in the forefront for project leaders and teams.
  3. The third part of the framework considers those universal problems that the organization faces in terms of internal integration. Newly identified challenges added to Schein’s original list include getting consensus on ‘maximizing problem solving capability’ and ‘openness to feedback’.

These problems are as relevant to change projects as they are to business-as-usual. The project is, after all, an organization, albeit a temporary one. While leaders may give considered thought to some or even all of the problems above when considering the larger organizational context, they rarely give these problems due attention in the temporary projects environment – and certainly not in terms of how they can define a network of cultural assumptions that will help resolve these issues. Therefore, these challenges are an excellent reference point for doing just that, as they add a structured level of detail to that higher-level parameter of ‘Change Management/Project Management integration’.

More…

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About the Author


Gabrielle O’Donovan

Dublin, Ireland

 

 


Gabrielle O’Donovan
has clocked up more than 30,000 hours over 20+ years working on change programmes that have covered the full spectrum. Clients have included Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Unilever, the London Metropolitian Police, Lloyds Banking Group, Friends Life Insurance, the Ministry of Justice UK, Invensys Plc, Dublin Airport Authority, Cathay Pacific Airways and HSBC Hong Kong. Projects have been global, regional and country-specific in scale.

Gabrielle O’Donovan has some significant achievements under her belt: her culture transformation programme for HSBC Hong Kong plus five subsidiary companies embedded a customer-centric culture and won an ASTD Excellence in Practice Award (USA, 2005); at Dublin Airport Authority, Ireland, her work as Stakeholder Management Lead for the building of Terminal 2 was instrumental to securing capital expenditure; Gabrielle’s first book ‘The Corporate Culture Handbook’1 was rated “In the top 1% of best business books for 2005” by USA reviewer Business Book Review; in 2010, Edgar Schein, Professor Emeritus of Sloan School of Management, MIT and founding father of organisational culture, referenced Gabrielle and her HSBC culture change programme in his 4th Edition of ‘Organisational Culture and Leadership (Jossey-Bass, 2010). Schein also shared Gabrielle’s ‘Characteristics of a Healthy Culture’ typology in his book, referring to her 23 new culture dimensions as “noteable”.

Gabrielle O’Donovan is the author of Making Organizational Change Stick: How to create a culture of partnership between project and change management, published by Abingdon: Routledge in 2018.
 

 

Invisible Traps in Project Management Lead to Crisis

Advances in Project Management

SERIES ARTICLE

By Constance Dierickx, PhD

Atlanta, Georgia, USA

 



When we think of great project management, most of us imagine very smart people, tight processes and rigor to spare. Calendars, charts, metrics all skillfully employed by people with project management credentials. Yet, things go wrong. Sometimes resulting in disaster. Why? Because projects require humans to create the project, do the project and monitor it. Even smart people have cognitive limitations and emotions that influence their thinking. Even project managers of great experience, skill and intellect are subject these influences.  In my book, High-Stakes Leadership, I talk about the three aspects that make a leader great when ambiguity and risk are both high. These are the same attributes that enable leaders to move through crisis and often avoid it in the first place. They are: courage, judgment and fortitude. Even when leaders have these qualities in abundance, invisible decision traps can get in the way of even the most intelligent people.

What are the things that get in our way? The top three:

  1. Overconfidence
  2. Groupthink
  3. Anxiety avoidance

Who me? Overconfident?   

Regardless of how rational we think we are and no matter how objective we believe our assessment of our abilities, most people are overconfident. Surprisingly, more education doesn’t improve this. Fortunately, it doesn’t make it any worse either. Research by Russo and Schoemaker shows us that executives and undergraduate are equally likely to be overconfident. Neither experience nor recent advanced education creates immunity. This surprises almost everyone.

Russo and Schoemaker devised a very clever test of overconfidence and permitted me to update it for my book. I have used this test with executives for over 15 years and it never fails to yield the same result. What result is that? Surprise. Disbelief. Argument. Regardless of how smart and experienced we are, humans are overconfident. Since the research on this is clear, what should we do?

First, answer the questions in Table 1. Provide both low and high answers for each such that you are 90 percent sure the correct answer falls between the two. Then, check your answers with those that appear at the end of this article. If your answers were all correct or 9 of 10 were correct, ask yourself, “How did I do that? What method was I using?” This sort of reflection is essential to learning so don’t rush! Think about whether or not the approach you used for the test can be applied elsewhere.

If you are like most people, you missed several questions. What might you learn from this? Whether your answers were mostly right or not, thinking about your own thinking is worth doing, especially if you can keep the need to be right tucked away.

More…

To read entire article, click here

 

Editor’s note: The Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books previously published by Gower in UK and now by Routledge worldwide. Information about Routledge project management books can be found here.



About the Author


Constance Dierickx, PhD

Georgia, USA

 

 

 Constance Dierickx is a sought-after advisor to boards and senior executives in high-stakes situations such as rapid growth, mergers and acquisitions, CEO succession, and crisis. Her merger and acquisition clients succeed 400% more often than the average.

Constance has been quoted in, and asked to write for publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Chief Executive, Chief Financial Officer, Directorship, Boards and Directors, and Corporate Board Member.

Constance has consulted with dozens of boards and over 500 executives on five continents. She has worked with companies from the Fortune 50 to high-tech start-ups. Some of her clients include EWI Risk, Johnson Controls, Joy Global, Milliken Research, Porsche, Schnabel Engineering, Tennessee Valley Authority, and Vulcan Materials.

She is Vice-Chair of the board of The Partnership Against Domestic Violence and a member of the Advisory Board of Executive Women of Goizueta (Emory University). She is a member of the National Association of Corporate Directors and the Association for Psychological Science.

Constance received her undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina-Asheville, with faculty bestowed “high honors.”  Her M.A. and Ph.D. are from Georgia State University where she studied psychology and decision science.

Constance Dierickx is the author of High-Stakes Leadership: Leading through Crisis with Courage, Judgment and Fortitude published (© 2018) by Bibliomotion, part of the Routledge / Taylor and Francis Group.

 

Team dynamics and the perils of agreement

Advances in Project Management

SERIES ARTICLE

By Prof Darren Dalcher

Director, National Centre for Project Management

University of Hertfordshire

United Kingdom

 



Project managers are accustomed to avoiding, and overcoming disagreements inside the team, amongst stakeholders, with suppliers and with others senior managers, sponsors and leaders. Indeed, the abilities to remove or resolve conflict and deal with contradictions are highly prized in leaders in most domains.

Project management has followed a similar set of traditions and assumptions. The 6th edition of the APM Body of Knowledge focuses on the seven crucial interpersonal skills, which include conflict resolution, alongside communication, delegation, influencing, leadership, negotiation and teamwork. Similarly, The 6th edition of PMI’s A guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge makes multiple references to conflict management, before addressing it as a key area under the Project Resource Management knowledge area, identifying it as a key interpersonal and team skill, alongside decision making, emotional intelligence, influencing, and leadership. IPMA’s Individual Competence Baseline also makes a reference to the area of ‘conflict and crisis’ under the people section, given the need to moderate or solve conflicts and crises.

Conflict can be defined as different objectives and attitudes between two or more parties. Conflict management is the process of identifying and addressing differences that, if left unresolved, could affect objectives.’ (APM, 2012; p. 56)

The success of project managers in managing their project often depends on their ability to resolve conflict.’ (PMI, 2017; p. 348)

The potential means of resolving conflicts involve collaboration, compromise, prevention or the use of power.’ (IPMA, 2015; p. 86)

The Oxford Dictionary defines conflict as: a serious disagreement or argument, typically a protracted one; a prolonged armed struggle; or, a serious incompatibility between two or more opinions, principles or interests. Given the implication of disagreement between ideas, beliefs or perspectives, it is only natural that managers and leaders try to minimise disagreements and maintain harmony and balance.

But what if the core of our problems stems from agreement rather than conflict?

The real problem with agreement

Variation is highly cherished, especially in teams, in order to avoid homogenous thinking and problem resolution. Nature also favours variation as a mechanism for infusing diversity, resilience and flexibility. Design is often informed by the creativity that emerges from the conflict between ideas, needs and perspectives.

Project teams bring together a diversity of opinions, views and team members encouraging a wider spectrum of approaches designed to avoid the uniformity and conformity of groupthink and encourage diversity through challenge. And yet, project managers often seek to banish conflict in order to simplify decision making, reach consensus, and limit the potential for disagreements and blockages in systems, plans and the execution of initiatives.

The approaches for addressing the harmful impacts of excessive conflict are well featured in the literature, but what about the harmful impact of violent (or perhaps, silent) agreement? Can agreement, which after all seems to be the outcome of effective conflict resolution, become powerful enough to undermine a good project or destabilise a good team? Can absolute agreement derail success?

A journey to Abilene

US management scholar Jerry B. Harvey (1974) captured the risks of agreement in the following tale.

On an extremely hot July afternoon, a couple is visiting the wife’s parents in Coleman, Texas. The temperature of 104 degrees combines with a persistent wind that re-distributes the topsoil throughout the house to make being outdoors unpleasant. But as they settle on the back porch, the family has an old-fashioned fan, cold lemonade and is becoming engrossed in a game of dominoes. This has the makings of an agreeable, if slightly lazy afternoon, in Coleman, until the father-in-law suggests that they take a trip to Abilene, 53 miles North, to have dinner in the cafeteria…

More…

To read entire article, click here

 

Editor’s note: The PMWJ Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books published by Gower and other publishers in the Routledge family.  Each month an introduction to the current article is provided by series editor Prof Darren Dalcher, who is also the editor of the Gower/Routledge Advances in Project Management series of books on new and emerging concepts in PM.  Prof Dalcher’s article is an introduction to the invited paper this month in the PMWJ. 



About the Author


Darren Dalcher, PhD

Series Editor
Director, National Centre for Project Management
University of Hertfordshire, UK

 

 

Darren Dalcher, Ph.D. HonFAPM, FRSA, FBCS, CITP, FCMI, SMIEEE, SFHEA is Professor of Project Management at the University of Hertfordshire, and founder and Director of the National Centre for Project Management (NCPM) in the UK.  He has been named by the Association for Project Management (APM) as one of the top 10 “movers and shapers” in project management in 2008 and was voted Project Magazine’s “Academic of the Year” for his contribution in “integrating and weaving academic work with practice”. In October 2011 he was awarded a prestigious lifetime Honorary Fellowship from the Association for Project Management for outstanding contribution to the discipline of project management. Following industrial and consultancy experience in managing IT projects, Professor Dalcher gained his PhD in Software Engineering from King’s College, University of London.

Professor Dalcher has delivered lectures and courses in many leading institutions worldwide, and has won multiple awards and prizes. He has written over 200 papers and book chapters on project management and software engineering and published over 30 books. He is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Software: Evolution and Process published by John Wiley. He is the editor of the book series, Advances in Project Management, published by Routledge and of the companion series, Fundamentals of Project Management. Heavily involved in a variety of research projects and subjects, Professor Dalcher has built a reputation as leader and innovator in the areas of practice-based education and reflection in project management. He works with many major industrial and commercial organisations and government bodies in the UK and beyond.

Darren is an Honorary Fellow of the APM, a Chartered Fellow of the British Computer Society, a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, and the Royal Society of Arts, a Senior Member of the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers, a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a Member of the Project Management Institute (PMI), the Academy of Management, and the British Academy of Management. He is a Chartered IT Practitioner. He is a Member of the PMI Advisory Board responsible for the prestigious David I. Cleland project management award and of the APM Professional Development Board.  Prof Dalcher is an academic advisor for the PM World Journal.  He can be contacted at [email protected].

To see other works by Prof Darren Dalcher, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/darren-dalcher/.

 

 

Developing Leadership Agility

Different Projects, Different Approaches

Advances in Project Management Series

SERIES ARTICLE

By Ron Meyer
Professor of Strategic Leadership, Tilburg University
Tilburg, The Netherlands

and

Ronald Meijers
Senior Partner Leadership, Transformation & Governance, Deloitte
Amsterdam, The Netherlands

 



Every project manager knows that each project is essentially unique. The mix of different people, different objectives, different agendas, different circumstances and different unfolding events leads to a different dynamic that project managers ignore at their peril. One trick ponies never do well – only the agile flourish. To be successful, project managers need to be flexible, that is, they need to have a broad repertoire of potential behaviors and problem-solving approaches that they can tap into. But preferably they should also be adaptive, in other words, have the ability to learn new behaviors and problem-solving approaches if the current set is not sufficient. At the same time, this flexibility and adaptability should be coupled with responsiveness to the situational demands, meaning that they should quickly and accurately sense what the circumstances require and adjust their behavior accordingly. Only where project managers master flexibility, adaptability and responsiveness will they be truly agile and ready to deal with the unpredictable nature of project work.

For leaders in a project setting the need for agility is even higher. Not only is each project unique and shifting over time, but the people involved in projects have become increasingly more diverse. Not only does the workforce come from a wider variety of cultural backgrounds, but there is also a richer mix of genders, affiliations, lifestyles and career paths, each requiring leaders to adjust their behavior to be able to strike the right chord and win hearts and minds in the most effective way. With so many different situations and different people, all demanding a different approach, to be successful leaders must exhibit leadership agility – have the capacity to flexibly switch between leadership styles, and adaptively master new ones, in rapid response to the specific needs of the people and the situation they want to influence.

Yet, the fundamental question is which leadership styles exist that leaders could potentially make use of, what the advantages and disadvantages are of each, and under which conditions one would be preferable over the others. As this is a huge question, this article will limit itself to mapping twenty important leadership styles, grouped into ten pairs of opposite styles (see figure 1 for an overview). For the reader the question is whether you master all twenty and can easily switch between them depending on the needs of the circumstances. That would make you highly agile. The more likely reality is that you will be better at some than at others, leading to the question of whether there are some leadership styles that you need to improve to become more agile. Generally, people tend to exhibit a preference for one side of a pair (we call this their ‘default style’), making the other side of the pair the style requiring further development. If you would like to determine your own default styles, table 1 provides a ‘quick and dirty’ assessment tool.

These ten dimensions are not the only ways in which leadership styles can differ, but they do represent the most important balancing acts faced by leaders in their drive to effectively influence people around them. The ten can be divided into five clusters, depending on the leadership domain involved. The first two dimensions fall into the domain of interpersonal leadership, which deals with how leaders interact with other individuals to achieve certain results. The second pair is concerned with organizational leadership, focusing on the ways in which leaders can get individuals to work together as a strong team. The third set of dimensions is concerned with strategic leadership, dealing with the question of which role a leader plays in the formulation and implementation of strategy. The fourth pair falls into the category of leadership & mission, which deals with the type of purpose that leaders emphasize to mobilize people to follow. And finally the fifth pair of dimensions revolves around the way in which a person deals with being a leader and behaves towards leadership challenges  – leadership and self.

More…

To read entire article, click here

 

Editor’s note: The Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books previously published by Gower in UK and now by Routledge worldwide. Information about Routledge project management books can be found here. 



About the Authors


Ron Meyer, PhD

Canada and The Netherlands

 




Ron Meyer
is managing director of the Center for Strategy & Leadership, an international consulting and management development organization, dedicated to improving companies’ competences in the areas of strategic thinking, leadership, organizational development, business innovation and change management. Ron is also Professor of Strategic Leadership at Tias School for Business & Society, Tilburg University, where he conducts research in the areas of strategy, innovation and leadership, and teaches in a variety of post-experience educational programs.

Ron studied Political Science at the University of Alberta in his native Canada and got his MBA and PhD at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam. From 1987 to 1998 he was assistant professor of strategic management at the Rotterdam School of Management. During this period he taught strategy in 15 countries, at universities and in companies, and acted as consultant to a wide variety of firms. For two years he was also Associate Director of RSM, in charge of managing the MBA Program.

Since 1998, at the Center for Strategy & Leadership and its predecessors, Ron has combined boardroom consultancy work with in-company trainings and applied management research. As consultant he works with many top international companies on such topics as corporate strategy, business innovation, strategic alliances and strategies for growth. As trainer he has given seminars and training courses to hundreds of companies around the world and lectured at more than 30 universities.

He has (co-)authored numerous articles and books, among which the internationally leading textbook on strategic management, Strategy – Process, Content, Context: An International Perspective. Over 250.000 copies have been sold so far and the book is used at more than 200 business schools around the world. The 5th edition was recently published, together with the 4th edition of his textbook Strategy Synthesis: Resolving Strategy Paradoxes to Create Competitive Advantage.

 


Ronald Meijers

The Netherlands

 

 

 Ronald Meijers is senior partner Leadership, Transformation and Governance at Deloitte. For years, Ronald has been engaged in boardroom coaching and consulting, while fulfilling various management roles in professional services firms, such as co-chairman of the executive board of Krauthammer. He sits on various supervisory and advisory boards, e.g. at Dunamare, an education group. He gives key-notes on topics such as corporate culture, organizational collaboration, change management, creative thinking, leadership and governance. He has (co-) authored numerous articles, books and columns, among others in Management Team and Management Scope.

Ron Meyer and Ronald Meijers are the authors of the book Leadership Agility: Developing Your Repertoire of Leadership Styles, recently published by Routledge.

 

The leaders we deserve?

Advances in Project Management

SERIES ARTICLE

By Prof Darren Dalcher

Director, National Centre for Project Management
University of Hertfordshire

United Kingdom

 



Over the years, many of us have must have looked at our own bosses and wondered how they ever became leaders. We all recognise the profile; bereft of strategic thinking, enmeshed in local and personal considerations, unable to see the horizon of opportunities, antagonistic, incapable of inspiring others, lacking a vision, unable to consider consequences and options, incapable of making informed decisions, uncaring and ignorant of how to engage with and motivate followers. Poor leaders deliver a toxic long-term legacy, which affects team members and followers, and ultimately, impacts the bottom line of the organisation, team or unit. The typical traits of poor leaders (Leviticus, 2017) include:

  • Lack of communication;
  • Tendency to micromanage;
  • Unclear expectations;
  • Intimidation and bullying; and
  • Poor people skills.

Many of our appointed leaders would appear to exhibit such symptoms, causing untold damage to organisations. Management scholar Laurence J. Peter reasoned that people rise to their level of incompetence. Selection to higher office and new positions is often based on performance in previous assignments. The Peter Principle suggests that people rise, or get promoted, until they reach a job they cannot really manage, leaving many individuals to operate at their ‘level of incompetence’.

In time, every post tends to be occupied by an employee who is incompetent to carry out its duties.” (Peter & Hull, 1969, p. 36)

Inevitably, therefore:

Work is accomplished by those employees who have not yet reached their level of incompetence“. (ibid.)

The Peter Principle became an international best seller, selling well over a million copies. The original manuscript had been rejected by 30 publishers, before William Morrow & Company accepted it and printed a small run of 10,000 copies. The book made it into the New York Times best-seller list, selling over 200,000 copies in the first year. It has since been translated into 38 languages.A generalised form of the Peter Principle asserts that anything that works will continue to be utilised in the exact same format, in increasingly more demanding contexts and applications, until it ultimately fails. The temptation is to develop a habit that keeps replicating exactly what has worked previously and impose it on new situations as they are encountered.

Ironically, Peter and Hull also noted that highly competent individuals may struggle to progress through the system.

“In most hierarchies, super-competence is more objectionable than incompetence.” (ibid.)

Peter and Hull duly warned that extremely skilled and productive employees often face criticism, and are fired if they don’t start performing worse as their presence ‘disrupts and therefore violates the first commandment of hierarchical life: the hierarchy must be preserved.’

A crisis of leadership

In an increasingly uncertain world, leaders are called upon to deliver both hope and change. When there is a need for a clear direction, followers turn to their leaders for the courage to make the right decision and the inspiration and assurance that allow followers to believe.

Many of the leaders we encounter in all spheres of life place their desire to be right above the wish to achieve the right outcome. Ego boosts, quests for power and the thirst for greed are often confused with leadership.

As a result, many followers, citizens and workers remain concerned by the apparent lack of leadership skills. The World Economic Forum identified lack of leadership as one of the major global challenges facing the world in 2015, and commissioned a survey to investigate further. A staggering 86% of respondents worldwide agreed that there is currently a global leadership crisis.

The figures divided by region support the global perception of the problem, with respondents acknowledging a leadership crisis divided by continent and region as follows:

More…

To read entire article, click here

 

Editor’s note: The PMWJ Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books published by Gower and other publishers in the Routledge family.  Each month an introduction to the current article is provided by series editor Prof Darren Dalcher, who is also the editor of the Gower/Routledge Advances in Project Management series of books on new and emerging concepts in PM.  Prof Dalcher’s article is an introduction to the invited paper this month in the PMWJ. 


 
About the Author


Darren Dalcher, PhD

Series Editor
Director, National Centre for Project Management
University of Hertfordshire, UK

 

 

Darren Dalcher, Ph.D. HonFAPM, FRSA, FBCS, CITP, FCMI, SMIEEE, SFHEA is Professor of Project Management at the University of Hertfordshire, and founder and Director of the National Centre for Project Management (NCPM) in the UK.  He has been named by the Association for Project Management (APM) as one of the top 10 “movers and shapers” in project management in 2008 and was voted Project Magazine’s “Academic of the Year” for his contribution in “integrating and weaving academic work with practice”. In October 2011 he was awarded a prestigious lifetime Honorary Fellowship from the Association for Project Management for outstanding contribution to the discipline of project management. Following industrial and consultancy experience in managing IT projects, Professor Dalcher gained his PhD in Software Engineering from King’s College, University of London.

Professor Dalcher has delivered lectures and courses in many leading institutions worldwide, and has won multiple awards and prizes. He has written over 200 papers and book chapters on project management and software engineering and published over 30 books. He is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Software: Evolution and Process published by John Wiley. He is the editor of the book series, Advances in Project Management, published by Routledge and of the companion series, Fundamentals of Project Management. Heavily involved in a variety of research projects and subjects, Professor Dalcher has built a reputation as leader and innovator in the areas of practice-based education and reflection in project management. He works with many major industrial and commercial organisations and government bodies in the UK and beyond.

Darren is an Honorary Fellow of the APM, a Chartered Fellow of the British Computer Society, a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, and the Royal Society of Arts, a Senior Member of the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers, a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a Member of the Project Management Institute (PMI), the Academy of Management, and the British Academy of Management. He is a Chartered IT Practitioner. He is a Member of the PMI Advisory Board responsible for the prestigious David I. Cleland project management award and of the APM Professional Development Board.  Prof Dalcher is an academic advisor for the PM World Journal.  He can be contacted at [email protected]

To see other works by Prof Darren Dalcher, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/darren-dalcher/.

 

 

Commercial Project Management

Expands the body of knowledge into an essential domain

SERIES ARTICLE

Advances in Project Management Series

By Robin Hornby

Calgary, Alberta, Canada

 



Introduction

Most of my career in IT and software development has been spent with vendors – migrating from an emphasis on hardware, to software, then to services as the decades passed. Services were really always a part of it, usually bundled, but the reality of managing a delivery team where real dollars are being consumed against a fixed project budget only struck home when I joined a dedicated contracting outfit in the early ’80s. There I started to experience the unique problems faced by both vendor project managers (PMs), and increasingly by PMs operating under commercial terms or constraints, as encountered in larger corporations operating an internal economy.

These problems fall into two general and related categories. The first is the lack of standards and the need that arises for an extension to the body of knowledge, not supplied by current offerings, such as PMBOK®, or PRINCE2®. The second category arises from the multiple views of project management (client, prime, and subcontractors) that inevitably exist in this environment. This demands flexibility from the vendor, who must adapt to the client (more often than vice-versa) and who is also faced with the need for internal (vendor) management discipline.

This has spawned a number of potential failure causes uniquely observed in the commercial project environment – poor integration as exhibited by project ‘silos’, poor recognition of the business role of PMs, poor connection between sales commitments and delivery capability, futile generation of multiple SOWs when really only one project is operating, poor project management communication, plummeting client satisfaction, and narrow or disappearing vendor margins.

  1. Overview of the Situation

The introduction of a business relationship between a services firm, their project manager, and a sponsor who is now a customer has a salutary effect on the traditional project management role. Project managers with little experience in these situations manage less effectively, jeopardizing customer satisfaction and project profitability. At the same time, executives or owners of the firm are often unfamiliar with the disciplines of project management, especially at an early stage of their firm’s evolution, so their support for a struggling project manager is lacking and the firm may never gain the foundation for healthy growth or even survival.

My generalized observations are:

  • PMs lack experience and knowledge of business essentials, fail to run their projects as profit centers, and have difficulty understanding that their sponsor is also their customer; and
  • Business owners are unaware of the potential for project management disciplines to enhance their business operations and are missing opportunities to gain much-needed business control.

Firms who have primed their PMs with business acumen and balanced an enthusiastic and skillful sales team with delivery management disciplines are rewarded with both successful projects and repeat business, which is the secret of a firm’s profitability and longevity.

This, of course, is easier said than done. The essence of the problem is the inevitable encroachment of business management demands into the exclusive realm of project management. The PM requires training, proper exposure to legitimate vendor interests (and sometimes an attitude adjustment) to be successful.

The intersection between business and vendor project management can be expressed in three simple terms:

  1. Customer satisfaction and repeat business;
  2. Employee skill, growth and retention; and,
  3. Profit

Contemplate the advice I received from a boss at my old consulting company who had a unique way of emphasizing these three priorities of the professional services firm:

More…

To read entire article, click here


Editor’s note: The Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books previously published by Gower in UK and now by Routledge worldwide. Information about Routledge project management books can be found here.

 



About the Author


Robin Hornby

Alberta, Canada

 


After graduating from Queens University Belfast with a degree in aeronautical engineering and a Masters in applied science, Robin’s career began with IBM United Kingdom as systems engineer. Moving to Canada in 1977, he worked in the telecommunications sector as systems planner before embarking on his project management career with DMR Consulting. When DMR expanded overseas, Robin accepted a six-month assignment in Melbourne, Australia, where he assembled a team of DMR consultants to successfully implement a time-critical on-line health insurance system. Returning to Edmonton, he managed multiple government contracts and assumed responsibilities as office development manager.

In 1987 Robin returned to Australia to help establish the Canberra and Perth offices and provide training as part of the acquisition of about 100 consultant staff into DMR. Back in Canada in 1990, he joined the Calgary office of DMR as a member of the management team for DMR Western Region, with responsibility for systems delivery and project profitability. In 1995 he was offered the role of National Delivery Manager for Intergraph Canada, and in a few years returned the services business to profitability. This role continued following the establishment of Tempest Management Inc. (TMI) in 1997 which allowed the pursuit of wider interests including a ten-year affiliation with Mount Royal University to teach the PMBOKÒ curriculum and collaborate in the development and delivery of custom courses for corporate clients.

Robin is the author of three books, most recently Commercial Project Management – a Guide for Selling and Delivering Professional Services. Recent consulting assignments have included project risk reviews, contract reviews, PM coaching, and delivery and project office management roles. His current focus is on writing and conducting seminars on the aspects of project management he believes are neglected – commercial practice, methodology for collaborative procurement of services, and PM leadership to achieve project quality.

 

 

Commercial management and projects

A long overdue match?

Advances in Project Management

SERIES ARTICLE

By Prof Darren Dalcher

Director, National Centre for Project Management
University of Hertfordshire

United Kingdom

 



A quick search for the phrase ‘commercial management’ in the digital version of the 6th edition of PMI Guide released in 2017 fails to come up with a single result. The 6th edition of Body of knowledge from the UK’s Association for Project Management similarly offers no matches. The leading canons of project management knowledge would thus seem to imply that commercial management has nothing whatsoever to do with projects. The apparent disconnect is a little troubling since commercial management has a lot to offer project management practitioners and researchers.

The ignorance of commercial management is even more puzzling given that over the years, a number of decent books have endeavoured to bridge that gap, offering treatises that address the links, connections and common issues. Perhaps the first book to offer such insight and focus on the area is The commercial Project Manager edited by Professor Rodney Turner in 1995. The Foreword to the book, written by Dr. Martin Barnes, Former President of the UK’s Association for Project Management, notes that ‘many projects are not managed with proper consideration of commercial aspects. Only in the last few years have many people realized, for example, that only the most trivial projects are completed without needing well designed contracts between the contributing people and organizations.’

Dr. Barnes uses the analogy of risk management, that had previously been considered as a ‘bolt on extra’ to project management technique, to highlight the need to similarly integrate commercial management into the very core of project management. More critically, he points out that rather than simply fill a gap, Turner’s book first demonstrates an unrecognised gap before duly proceeding to fill it.

Rodney Turner and his team have not taken up space with descriptions of the traditional techniques of project management. … But, for the first time, almost everything which sets the context within which these basic project management functions have to be performed is here. Reading The Commercial Project Manager starkly demonstrates how important the surrounding commercial considerations are to successful project management. Integration of the commercial aspects of the basic technology has often not been achieved. Full integration, based on a clear understanding makes a big difference to the success of the completed project. Strangely, this applies whether the objectives of the project are themselves intensely commercial or not.’ (Barnes, 1995, p. xiii).

Despite the clear potential impact on the profession, well over twenty years following the publication of Professor Turner’s book on the subject and the plea from Dr. Barnes, commercial management remains a relatively perplexing conundrum, still completely unrecognised by the traditional project management sources of wisdom.

What is commercial management?

The Institute for Commercial Management (ICM), established in the 1970s and currently based in Ringwood, Hampshire in the United Kingdom, purports to be the leading international body for commercial and business development staff. Their definition of commercial management positions it as: “the identification and development of business opportunities and the profitable management of projects and contracts, from inception to completion.”

More…

To read entire article, click here


Editor’s note: The PMWJ Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books published by Gower and other publishers in the Routledge family.  Each month an introduction to the current article is provided by series editor Prof Darren Dalcher, who is also the editor of the Gower/Routledge Advances in Project Management series of books on new and emerging concepts in PM.  Prof Dalcher’s article is an introduction to the invited paper this month in the PMWJ. 

 


 
About the Author


Darren Dalcher, PhD

Series Editor
Director, National Centre for Project Management
University of Hertfordshire, UK

 

 

Darren Dalcher, Ph.D. HonFAPM, FRSA, FBCS, CITP, FCMI, SMIEEE, SFHEA is Professor of Project Management at the University of Hertfordshire, and founder and Director of the National Centre for Project Management (NCPM) in the UK.  He has been named by the Association for Project Management (APM) as one of the top 10 “movers and shapers” in project management in 2008 and was voted Project Magazine’s “Academic of the Year” for his contribution in “integrating and weaving academic work with practice”. In October 2011 he was awarded a prestigious lifetime Honorary Fellowship from the Association for Project Management for outstanding contribution to the discipline of project management. Following industrial and consultancy experience in managing IT projects, Professor Dalcher gained his PhD in Software Engineering from King’s College, University of London.

Professor Dalcher has delivered lectures and courses in many leading institutions worldwide, and has won multiple awards and prizes. He has written over 200 papers and book chapters on project management and software engineering and published over 30 books. He is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Software: Evolution and Process published by John Wiley. He is the editor of the book series, Advances in Project Management, published by Routledge and of the companion series, Fundamentals of Project Management. Heavily involved in a variety of research projects and subjects, Professor Dalcher has built a reputation as leader and innovator in the areas of practice-based education and reflection in project management. He works with many major industrial and commercial organisations and government bodies in the UK and beyond.

Darren is an Honorary Fellow of the APM, a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, a Chartered Fellow of the British Computer Society, a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, and the Royal Society of Arts, a Senior Member of the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers, and a Member of the Project Management Institute (PMI), the Academy of Management, and the Association for Computing Machinery. He is a Chartered IT Practitioner. He sits on numerous senior research and professional boards, including the PMI Academic Member Advisory Group, the APM Research Advisory Group, the Chartered Management Institute Academic Council, the British Library’s Management Book of the Year Panel, and the APM Group’s Ethics and Standards Governance Board. Prof Dalcher is an academic advisor for the PM World Journal.  He can be contacted at [email protected].

To see other works by Prof Darren Dalcher, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/darren-dalcher/.

 

 

The value of business change management in projects

Advances in Project Management Series

SERIES ARTICLE

By Nicola Busby

United Kingdom

 



It is an exciting time to be working in business change. Over the past few years interest in the profession has increased exponentially. Organisations who still struggle to realise the expected benefits of their changes, despite increasingly sophisticated project frameworks, are exploring its potential as the missing link to success. Job vacancies for business change managers are on the increase. The role itself is professionalising with representation from at least two global bodies, each of which has developed a change management Body of Knowledge. There are a number of accredited training and development paths for those who wish to enter and progress in the field. Alongside this are a wealth of consultancies who can support organisations going through change with bespoke approaches, methodologies, philosophies and frameworks. There is a lot of investment in business change right now.

My years of work, training and research in business change management leaves me convinced that the only way to introduce successful change into organisations is through a concentrated focus on the people involved. Therefore, I am thrilled about the increased interest in business change management. However, the rapid development of the profession is beginning to resemble a Chinese dragon – a small head at the front with a very long tail trailing along behind. The trailblazers are coming up with more and more sophisticated approaches, terminologies and frameworks for business change whilst a large percentage are struggling to keep up.

This means that many of those who should be benefitting from the increased investment in business change remain largely in ignorance about what business change management can achieve, or hold outdated assumptions about what it is and what it does. This seems to be true of both those working in organisations, which are experiencing change, and those working in the field of change itself – in the world of projects and programmes. Even business change managers don’t always seem to be fully aware of how powerful their role can be, and how they are often the key to successful organisational change.

One common situation where people struggle is how to utilise business change management within projects. Most project managers expect to undertake some stakeholder engagement and communications as part of their role. In fact, project management best practice, training qualifications and bodies of knowledge are increasingly being revised to include people aspects of change. So, how and why can a business change manager add value to a project?

The scope of business change management in a project

There are generally three things to focus on in a project, as shown by the diagram below:

 

The object of the change is the thing that is changing. This could be anything from a software upgrade to a new target operating model, or a focus on a new customer segment.

The associated activities are the things that people will need to do differently to work with the object of the change successfully.

The people involved in the change. For change to be successful, every individual required to plan, make decisions and implement the change needs to be supportive and contribute effectively. Every user affected by the change needs to make the decision to participate and make the effort to do things differently. These are the areas which are the domain of the business change manager.

Organisational change is tough. It can be contentious, emotive, unpopular and sheer hard work. By its very nature, change often disturbs deep rooted values and cultures. It rarely benefits everyone it touches and often raises the tensions and insecurities which bubble just below the surface of many organisations. It is in these situations that business change managers really add value. They can build desire for change, overcome resistance, increase involvement and ownership and make people feel more positive about the change.

More…

To read entire article, click here

 

Editor’s note: The Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books previously published by Gower in UK and now by Routledge worldwide. Information about Routledge project management books can be found here.



About the Author


Nicola Busby

United Kingdom

 


Nicola Busby
is an experienced business change professional who is passionate about the benefits that business change management can bring to organisations and staff going through change. She has supported many organisations in the private, public and non-profit sectors through a wide variety of change, including:

  • organisational transformations, restructures and mergers
  • IT-enabled change
  • cultural and behavioural change
  • building organisational capacity to deliver change

Nicola’s clients have included Penguin Random House, Houses of Parliament, Financial Ombudsman Service, National Childbirth Trust, BBC, ITV, Network Rail, and Kent County Council.

Nicola is an accredited trainer for the APMG Change Management qualification, and authored a chapter on Change Readiness, Planning and Measurement for the set text for the course, ‘The Effective Change Manager’s Handbook’.

Nicola’s latest book, ‘The Shape of Change: a guide to planning, implementing and embedding organisational change’, is published by Routledge and available now.

Nicola blogs at Business Change Enthusiasts.

 

 

Who killed change?

Reconsidering the relationship between projects and change

Advances in Project Management

SERIES ARTICLE

By Prof Darren Dalcher

Director, National Centre for Project Management
University of Hertfordshire

United Kingdom

 



Society is full of potential change agents agitating for improvement, enhancement and further development. Aspirant initiatives range from improving public services, reforming government and available services, and engaging younger voters in politics, to the transformation of organisations, the successful implementation of mergers and acquisitions, and the development of digital presence, experiences and perspectives to corporate life, social communities and consumer behaviours. Yet, while change is ubiquitous to thriving societal and organisational life, change initiatives continue to flounder at an alarming rate. The poor success rate of change initiatives has intrigued change management and organisational psychology researchers and practitioners for over half a century. The remainder of this article focuses on some of the leading insights into change management and its successful adoption.

Leading change

In 1995, Harvard Business School Professor, John Kotter, published the results of a 10-year study of more than 100 companies that attempted major organisational transformations and turnaround projects (Kotter, 1995). His research highlighted the eight most significant errors made by organisations seeking to implement change programmes that can doom any change effort (and are slightly enhanced and expanded below):

Error 1: Not establishing a great enough sense of urgency: Often augmented by underestimating the difficulty of driving people from their comfort zone, or becoming paralysed by risks.

Error 2: Not creating a powerful enough guiding coalition: Potentially relegating change leadership to a functional manager, instead of seeking a senior line manager or sponsor with the ability to connect across silos and functional units.

Error 3: Lacking a vision: Presenting a vision that is too complicated or vague to be communicated briefly and effectively.

Error 4: Under-communicating the vision: May include missing opportunities to sell and present the change, settling on a single communication channel (e.g. a single meeting or one leaflet), or not getting executives to behave in ways that support the proposals.

Error 5: Not removing obstacles to the new vision: Obstacles may include organisational structures, culture, processes, systems or individuals, and may thus require changes to risk taking approaches, and the acceptance of radical or revamped approaches and ways of thinking.

Error 6: Not systematically planning for, and creating, short terms wins: Transformation takes time, so potential pitfalls to success may hinge on not including visible short-terms goals that can demonstrate achievement, failing to provide compelling evidence of success, and failing to identify and score success early enough in the process.

Error 7: Declaring victory too soon: Not recognising that early performance improvements are only early wins and thereby leading to failure to consolidate improvements and deliver more of the agreed upon change.

Error 8: Not anchoring changes in the corporation’s culture: Potential failure to create new social norms and shared values consistent with the required change, or failure to promote and create a succession plan that is consistent with the new transformation.

Kotter maintained that many managers failed to recognise that transformation is a process rather than an event:

More…

To read entire article, click here

 

Editor’s note: The PMWJ Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books published by Gower and other publishers in the Routledge family. Each month an introduction to the current article is provided by series editor Prof Darren Dalcher, who is also the editor of the Gower/Routledge Advances in Project Management series of books on new and emerging concepts in PM. Prof Dalcher’s article is an introduction to the invited paper this month in the PMWJ.



About the Author


Darren Dalcher, PhD

Series Editor
Director, National Centre for Project Management
University of Hertfordshire, UK

 

 

Darren Dalcher, Ph.D. HonFAPM, FRSA, FBCS, CITP, FCMI, SMIEEE, SFHEA is Professor of Project Management at the University of Hertfordshire, and founder and Director of the National Centre for Project Management (NCPM) in the UK. He has been named by the Association for Project Management (APM) as one of the top 10 “movers and shapers” in project management in 2008 and was voted Project Magazine’s “Academic of the Year” for his contribution in “integrating and weaving academic work with practice”. In October 2011 he was awarded a prestigious lifetime Honorary Fellowship from the Association for Project Management for outstanding contribution to the discipline of project management. Following industrial and consultancy experience in managing IT projects, Professor Dalcher gained his PhD in Software Engineering from King’s College, University of London.

Professor Dalcher has delivered lectures and courses in many leading institutions worldwide, and has won multiple awards and prizes. He has written over 200 papers and book chapters on project management and software engineering and published over 30 books. He is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Software: Evolution and Process published by John Wiley. He is the editor of the book series, Advances in Project Management, published by Routledge and of the companion series, Fundamentals of Project Management. Heavily involved in a variety of research projects and subjects, Professor Dalcher has built a reputation as leader and innovator in the areas of practice-based education and reflection in project management. He works with many major industrial and commercial organisations and government bodies in the UK and beyond.

Darren is an Honorary Fellow of the APM, a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, a Chartered Fellow of the British Computer Society, a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, and the Royal Society of Arts, a Senior Member of the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers, and a Member of the Project Management Institute (PMI), the Academy of Management, and the Association for Computing Machinery. He is a Chartered IT Practitioner. He sits on numerous senior research and professional boards, including the PMI Academic Member Advisory Group, the APM Research Advisory Group, the Chartered Management Institute Academic Council, the British Library’s Management Book of the Year Panel, and the APM Group’s Ethics and Standards Governance Board. Prof Dalcher is an academic advisor for the PM World Journal. He can be contacted at [email protected]

To see other works by Prof Darren Dalcher, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/darren-dalcher/.

 

 

Project Governance

SERIES ARTICLE

Advances in Project Management Series

By Martin Samphire

United Kingdom

 



There is a strong correlation between good governance and more successful projects. Good Governance is taking on a more prominent role in senior executives’ minds as greater scrutiny is exercised and accountability for performance is expected. So what does good governance of project management look like and how can it be achieved? This article sets out some of the core principles, identifies the key players and enablers, and provides ten golden rules of good governance.

  1. Introduction

Project failure rates and the reasons for failure are little different now from 30 years ago. The UK Cabinet Office and National Audit Office (NAO) list common causes of failures that have been well publicised over the last ten years – which strongly resemble those identified by the Harvard Business School some 30 years previously:

  • Lack of clear link between the project and the organisation’s key strategic priorities, including agreed measures of success.
  • Lack of clear senior management and Ministerial ownership and leadership.
  • Lack of effective engagement with stakeholders.
  • Lack of skills and proven approach to project management and risk management.
  • Too little attention to breaking development and implementation into manageable steps.
  • Evaluation of proposals driven by initial price rather than long-term value for money (especially securing delivery of business benefits).
  • Lack of understanding of and contact with the supply industry at senior levels in the organisation.

All of the above are mainly poor governance issues. A recent survey by the UK’s Association for Project Management (APM, 2015) confirmed that governance elements are key factors in project success. The PMI (2014) Pulse of the Profession Survey and the PwC (2012) Global Survey have indicated that there is a competitive advantage for businesses in developing good governance practice.

One cause of governance failure is that organisations become ‘comatose’ and do not always enforce learning from past mistakes and successes. Moreover, the project environment is becoming increasingly more dynamic so organisations need to be more agile and flexible in their governance response. “I’ve started so I’ll finish” is no longer an appropriate strategy.

More…

To read entire article, click here

Editor’s note: The Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books previously published by Gower in UK and now by Routledge worldwide. Information about Routledge project management books can be found here.



About the Author


Martin Samphire

United Kingdom

 




Martin Samphere
is the owner and Managing Director of 3pmxl Ltd, a consultancy that is based in the UK and specialises in implementing major transformation and helping clients to transform their business using structured PPPM approaches.   He has over 30 years management consulting, change, project, programme and portfolio implementation experience in both the private and public sectors – in the UK and internationally. He has directed and contributed to a number of complex business and organisational change programmes to fundamentally reshape and improve client business performance, often enabled by technology. He has also led a number of assignments to improve an organisation’s capability to better manage portfolios, projects and programmes

Martin is a mechanical engineer by training and started his career in major capital project contracting in the petrochemical sector with Foster Wheeler. He moved into consulting with The Nichols Group and thence to Impact Plus and Hitachi Consulting, helping organisations to implement organisational change in a more structured project and programme oriented way. He started 3pmxl in 2011.

Martin is Chairman of the UK based Association for Project Management (APM) Specific Interest Group (SIG) on Governance. This Governance SIG has developed guidelines for Governance of Project Management, including ‘Directing Change’, ‘Governance of Multi-owned Projects’, ‘Sponsoring Change’ and ‘Directing Agile Change’. He was also formerly a committee member for the APM SIG on Portfolio Management. He authored chapter 19 on Governance in the 2nd Edition of the Gower Programme Management Handbook (2016).

Client organisations he has worked with have included: Atkins, Arcus Partnership, Capita, Devon and Cornwall Constabulary, DNV-GL, eni, Metropolitan Police Service, Northumbrian Water, Practicus, Proger S.p.a., Saipem, Thales, Thames Valley Police, Thames Water, Turner and Townsend, Valldata.

 

 

Is it time for good enough governance?

Advances in Project Management

SERIES ARTICLE

By Prof Darren Dalcher

Director, National Centre for Project Management
University of Hertfordshire

United Kingdom

 



Last month’s column featured strategic initiatives and their ability to connect strategy and execution. This month’s topic moves on to address the governance systems, structures and mechanisms required to implement projects and support organisational achievement.

The term governance has been in wide use since the 1980s. It is often invoked in discussions around epidemics, risks, hazards, climate change, coastal erosion, environmental challenges, communities, globalisation, and developing countries, but is neither clearly defined nor universally understood. The surge of interest in governance stems from the perceived limitations of traditional institutions and conventional structures, enabling a new social discourse focused around a fast changing world, where greater attention must be paid to people, practices, behaviours and activities.

Governance refers, therefore, to all processes of governing, whether undertaken by government, market or network, whether over a family, tribe, formal or informal organization, or territory, and whether through laws, norms, power or language’. (Bevir, 2012, p. 1)

The Oxford Dictionary defines governance as ‘the action or manner of governing a state, organization, etc.’. Accordingly, the verb to govern is defined as: to ‘conduct the policy, actions, and affairs of (a state, organization or people) with authority’. An additional explanation expands the focus, highlighting the need to ‘control, influence or regulate (a person, action or course of events).’ The term governance, which first appears in Middle English is said to derive from Old French governer, from Latin gubernare ‘to steer, rule’ and from Greek kubernan ‘to steer’. The Cambridge Dictionary offers a more contemporary definition of governance, as ‘the way that organizations or countries are managed at the highest level, and the systems for doing this’. The verb to govern is correspondingly explained as ‘to control and direct the public business of a country, city, group of people, etc.’. Finally, the US Merriam Webster Dictionary offers a more pragmatic definition of governance as ‘the way that a city, company, etc., is controlled by the people who run it.’ The underpinning verb to govern thus relies on the need ‘to officially control and lead: to make decisions: or guide the actions’.

Governance can thus be reframed as a way of steering, organising, amplifying and constraining both power and actions. In other words, it is the way that the rules, guidelines, norms, practices and actions that underpin an area, are developed, justified, sustained and regulated. Stoker further condenses governance to ‘creating the conditions for ordered rule and collective action’. (Stoker, 1998; p. 17)

Governance in projects and beyond

The sixth edition of the APM Body of Knowledge (APM, 2012) has been significantly re-organised around the concept of governance, which is the first key area introduced in the document. The discussion makes it clear that ‘the governance of portfolios, programmes and projects is a necessary part of organisational governance’ (p. 8), as it gives the organisation the required internal controls, whilst reassuring stakeholders that the money being spent is justified.

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Editor’s note: The PMWJ Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books published by Gower and other publishers in the Routledge family. Each month an introduction to the current article is provided by series editor Prof Darren Dalcher, who is also the editor of the Gower/Routledge Advances in Project Management series of books on new and emerging concepts in PM. Prof Dalcher’s article is an introduction to the invited paper this month in the PMWJ.



About the Author


Darren Dalcher, PhD

Series Editor
Director, National Centre for Project Management
University of Hertfordshire, UK

 

 

Darren Dalcher, Ph.D. HonFAPM, FRSA, FBCS, CITP, FCMI, SMIEEE, SFHEA is Professor of Project Management at the University of Hertfordshire, and founder and Director of the National Centre for Project Management (NCPM) in the UK. He has been named by the Association for Project Management (APM) as one of the top 10 “movers and shapers” in project management in 2008 and was voted Project Magazine’s “Academic of the Year” for his contribution in “integrating and weaving academic work with practice”. In October 2011 he was awarded a prestigious lifetime Honorary Fellowship from the Association for Project Management for outstanding contribution to the discipline of project management. Following industrial and consultancy experience in managing IT projects, Professor Dalcher gained his PhD in Software Engineering from King’s College, University of London.

Professor Dalcher has delivered lectures and courses in many leading institutions worldwide, and has won multiple awards and prizes. He has written over 200 papers and book chapters on project management and software engineering and published over 30 books. He is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Software: Evolution and Process published by John Wiley. He is the editor of the book series, Advances in Project Management, published by Routledge and of the companion series, Fundamentals of Project Management. Heavily involved in a variety of research projects and subjects, Professor Dalcher has built a reputation as leader and innovator in the areas of practice-based education and reflection in project management. He works with many major industrial and commercial organisations and government bodies in the UK and beyond.

Darren is an Honorary Fellow of the APM, a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, a Chartered Fellow of the British Computer Society, a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, and the Royal Society of Arts, a Senior Member of the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers, and a Member of the Project Management Institute (PMI), the Academy of Management, and the Association for Computing Machinery. He is a Chartered IT Practitioner. He sits on numerous senior research and professional boards, including the PMI Academic Member Advisory Group, the APM Research Advisory Group, the Chartered Management Institute Academic Council, the British Library’s Management Book of the Year Panel, and the APM Group’s Ethics and Standards Governance Board. Prof Dalcher is an academic advisor for the PM World Journal. He can be contacted at [email protected].

To see other works by Prof Darren Dalcher, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/darren-dalcher/.

 

 

We need to talk about strategy

Advances in Project Management

SERIES ARTICLE

By Prof Darren Dalcher
Director, National Centre for Project Management
University of Hertfordshire

United Kingdom

 



Is there a link between project management excellence and long-term business or organisational success?

The traditional bodies of knowledge in project management have little to say about organisational strategy. This is somewhat surprising given that the organisational appetite for projects is on the increase. Indeed, projects seem to consume an ever-expanding proportion of organisational resources, whilst anecdotal evidence points to a persistent, yet, unbridgeable gap between intention and execution.

The gap implies that while senior executives may be asking themselves if they are ever likely to see the value, or the benefits, implicitly promised through the organisation’s project portfolio, project practitioners may be left adrift with little, or no knowledge of the strategic preferences. Meanwhile, in agile implementations, local team autonomy may lead to execution drifting further and further apart from strategic intention.

The importance of strategic initiatives

Robert Kaplan and David Norton followed their pioneering work on balanced scorecards, strategy maps and strategy-focused organisations by zooming in on the need to link strategy to operations in order to develop and maintain a competitive advantage. Their book The execution Premium focuses on the implementation of formal systems for the successful implementation of strategy. In the book, Kaplan and Norton describe the need to translate a strategy into strategic themes, objectives, measures and targets that represent what the organisation wants to accomplish. However, execution requires bridging the execution gap, and therefore strategic initiatives are utilised to represent the how.

Strategic initiatives are the collections of finite durations discretionary projects and programs, outside the organization’s day-to-day operational activities, that are designed to help the organisation achieve its targeted performance’ (Kaplan & Norton, 2008; p. 103)

While the need for an explicit link between long term strategy and immediate actions may appear obvious, they point out that their own survey reveals that 50 per cent of organisations fail to link strategy to short-term plans and budgets (ibid.; p. 4).

‘A senior executive summarized many executives’ frustration with the lack of alignment between strategy and action plans when he said, ‘half my initiatives achieve strategic goals. I just don’t know which half.’ ’ (ibid. ; p. 103)

Reading between the lines: So why do strategic initiatives fail?

Kaplan and Norton propose an initiative management process model encompassing three distinct core activities required to align action with priorities:

  1. Choose strategic initiatives – Identify what action programmes are needed for executing the strategy
  2. Fund the strategy – Identify a source of funding that is separated from the operational budget
  3. Establish accountability – Determine who will lead the execution

However, in reading the discourse related to the specific steps, it would appear that the true insights into the nature of the execution gap reside in the limitations and barriers associated with each of the steps.

Strategic plans require coordinated action that often extends beyond organisational boundaries, functions and business units. Kaplan and Norton reflect that in their original conception of scorecards, they encouraged companies to select initiatives independently for each strategic objective. However, they subsequently concede that selecting initiatives independently ignores the integrated and cumulative impact of multiple related strategic initiatives (p. 104). Those following only the earlier writing of the authors may thus miss on the opportunity for integrating—choosing instead to optimise around individual activities and initiatives.

The new advice is that initiatives should not be selected in isolation as the achievement of a strategic objective ‘generally requires multiple and complementary initiatives from various parts of the organization. … We continue to recommend that each nonfinancial objective have at least one initiative to drive its achievement but also that the initiatives be bundled for each strategic theme and considered as an integrated portfolio.’ (ibid. p. 104-5)

In other words, in order to achieve the associated performance objectives of a strategic theme, it will often be required that the entire collection of initiatives, or the full portfolio of actions is implemented. Successful execution with regard to organisational strategy thus requires a synergistic perspective rather than localised optimisation at an initiative or unit level.

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Editor’s note: The PMWJ Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books published by Gower and other publishers in the Routledge family. Each month an introduction to the current article is provided by series editor Prof Darren Dalcher, who is also the editor of the Gower/Routledge Advances in Project Management series of books on new and emerging concepts in PM. Prof Dalcher’s article is an introduction to the invited paper this month in the PMWJ.



About the Author


Darren Dalcher, PhD

Series Editor
Director, National Centre for Project Management
University of Hertfordshire, UK

 


Darren Dalcher
, Ph.D. HonFAPM, FRSA, FBCS, CITP, FCMI, SFHEA is Professor of Project Management at the University of Hertfordshire, and founder and Director of the National Centre for Project Management (NCPM) in the UK. He has been named by the Association for Project Management (APM) as one of the top 10 “movers and shapers” in project management in 2008 and was voted Project Magazine’s “Academic of the Year” for his contribution in “integrating and weaving academic work with practice”. Following industrial and consultancy experience in managing IT projects, Professor Dalcher gained his PhD in Software Engineering from King’s College, University of London.

Professor Dalcher has written over 150 papers and book chapters on project management and software engineering. He is Editor-in-Chief of Software Process Improvement and Practice, an international journal focusing on capability, maturity, growth and improvement. He is the editor of the book series, Advances in Project Management, published by Gower Publishing of a new companion series Fundamentals of Project Management. Heavily involved in a variety of research projects and subjects, Professor Dalcher has built a reputation as leader and innovator in the areas of practice-based education and reflection in project management. He works with many major industrial and commercial organisations and government bodies in the UK and beyond.

Darren is an Honorary Fellow of the APM, a Chartered Fellow of the British Computer Society, a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, and the Royal Society of Arts, and a Member of the Project Management Institute (PMI), the Academy of Management, the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers, and the Association for Computing Machinery. He is a Chartered IT Practitioner. He is a Member of the PMI Advisory Board responsible for the prestigious David I. Cleland project management award and of the APM Professional Development Board. Prof Dalcher is an academic advisor for the PM World Journal. He can be contacted at [email protected]

To see other works by Prof Darren Dalcher, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/darren-dalcher/.

 

 

Managing Strategic Initiatives

 

SERIES ARTICLE

Advances in Project Management Series

By Terry Cooke-Davies, PhD

United Kingdom

 



Introduction

It is commonplace to hear the word “Strategy” used in conversations between executives, managers and staff when the topic of an organizations’ intentions, aims and objectives are being discussed. Similarly, organizations’ leaders are prone to launch “initiatives” that are designed to change something about the business, to help implement its “strategy”. Such “strategic initiatives”, therefore, are highly likely to consist of work that can best be viewed as projects, programmes or collections of projects and programmes.

An important study sponsored by the Project Management Institute as a part of its 2013 Thought Leadership series (Economist Intelligence Unit, 2013) reported that during the three years prior to publication, an average of just 56% of strategic initiatives had been successful. The report defined a strategic initiative as, “a project, portfolio of projects, other discrete programme or series of actions undertaken to implement or continue the execution of a strategy, or that is otherwise essential for the successful implementation or execution of a strategy. This includes some—usually high priority—projects, but does not entail the entire project portfolio”.

Given how prominent a role projects and programmes play in such strategic initiatives, and the newspaper headlines that so frequently report on the failure of this or that major programme (especially if paid for out of taxpayers’ funds), then this should come as a surprise to no-one. There is considerable evidence from the field of projects and programmes to suggest that the low success rate is not particularly abnormal. Whether the data comes from the field of information technology projects e.g. (El Emam, 2008), from major infrastructure projects e.g. (Flyvbjerg, 2014) or from major organizational initiatives e.g. (Lovallo & Kahnemann, 2003) all the results point to a higher rate of failure than might be expected, given the importance of projects and programmes.

It isn’t as if the critical success factors for projects and programmes are not well documented – they have been extensively researched since the 1970s and are not controversial. Summaries can be found in many papers such as (Fortune & White, 2006) or (Cooke-Davies, 2004).

The trouble is that, like losing weight or giving up smoking, the principles are easy to grasp, but the behaviour (in this case organizational behaviour) is very hard to change. The more so because transformational change involves large numbers of people needing to do things differently.

Since the 1960s, however, management research and management “gurus” have wrestled with the problem of bringing about transformational change and, in the course of this journey, have learned a lot about why it is so challenging. You could categorize the most important of these lessons into four key areas or “strands of thinking”

  1. The first strand concerns what you could call the “nuts and bolts” of good programme and project management. Being clear about what you need to accomplish, knowing how well you are progressing towards those goals, and having the right means to make course corrections along the way.
  2. The second concerns the people who are impacted in some way by the change…

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Editor’s note: The Advances in Project Management series includes articles by authors of program and project management books published by Gower in UK and by Routledge worldwide. Information about Routledge project management books can be found here.



About the Author


Terry Cooke-Davies, PhD

United Kingdom

 




Terry Cooke-Davies
has been a practitioner of both general and project management since the end of the 1960s and a consultant to blue-chip organisations for over twenty years. He was the founder and Executive Chairman of Human Systems International, a global consulting firm which assesses the excellence of organizations’ project, program and portfolio management capability, and operates a leading-edge knowledge management network. With a PhD in Project Management, a bachelor’s degree in Theology, and qualifications in electrical engineering, management accounting and counselling, Terry has worked alongside senior leaders and managers in both the public and the private sectors, to ensure the delivery of business critical change programmes and enhance the quality of leadership. He is co-author with Paul C Dinsmore of ‘The Right Projects, Done Right’, published by Jossey-Bass in October 2005. Terry’s research interests include project success, project management maturity and capability, and the application to project management of insights from the study of complex systems. In October 2006, the Association for Project Management awarded Terry its premier Award, the Sir Monty Finneston Award, for his outstanding contributions to the development of project management as a vehicle for effective change.