Closely related to the disciplines of system engineering, industrial/production engineering, change management and business transformation
Managing several related projects in order to improve an organisation’s performance or alternatively to create outcomes
KNOWLEDGE (THEORIES, IDEAS & CONCEPTS)
Through Professional/Personal Study Gained Through Experience
·Integration Management – Governance (Oversight of a series of projects), Assurance & Audits, Consistent Management Reviews (with a common set of standards and processes).
Project Management Office (PMO) and Joint Project Office (JPO) Leverage – Reporting, Finance, Commercial, Infrastructure, Resources, Security, Safety & Environmental. Commonality of Process and Procedural Approaches.
Planning and Continuous Improvement – Project Alignment, Delivery of New Capability, Enabling and Supporting Projects, Transformation Initiatives.
SKILLS & APPLICATION OF KNOWLEDGE
IN REAL WORLD SITUATIONS
Together with Responsibilities / Accountabilities
Running the EDGE® Programme that spanned a far greater duration that any of the individual projects and culminated in the annual Joint Internal Research and Development (JIRAD) showcase event at the end of each year. The whole process required strategic planning, was governance intensive, facilitated the need to resolve disagreements between executives and meticulous detailed management.
·As a Programme Manager for multiple projects, I was responsible for delivering results tied to the organisations financial year and helped to deliver the quarterly results in terms of both revenue and costs. Budget planning, management and control is significantly more complex, especially when it involved different legal systems, currency exchange rates and offsets.
Programme change is far more difficult to manage, as they are driven by the organisations strategy, subject to market conditions and changing business goals.
A lot of the challenges running programmes can come when you have not been involved in the bid process and been appointed to an established programme grappling with the difficulties of an underestimated technical complexity, lack of firm leadership, commitment or sponsorship, and poor cross-functional communications, coupled with poor requirements management. These are strategic organisational in nature that need to be quickly identified and mitigated.
The next series of challenges related to executing the programme, in terms of no defined success metrics, lack of broad change management, lack of resources/skilled resources and lack of integration planning. These can be regarded as tactical and need to be managed on a day to day, as there is not a process or ideal solution, because they are unique in origin, can change regularly and just need to be kept on top of.
The final series of challenges related to the customer, end user and business in terms of management of the stakeholder expectations, dealing with changing personalities and needs as people come into and leave the programme event horizon, and the struggle to get final acceptance and sign-off. Each of these phases needs different approaches and methods.
SELECTED ACHIEVEMENTS & SUCCESSES
Together with Any 'So What' Statements or Insights
The most exhilarating programmes that I have been involved with have turned out to be the most rewarding. It would seem that the more you put into a programme, the more you get back. I have found that there is not a prescription method to get the right results. Each programme has to be assessed and managed independently because of the sheer number of different variables. Personalities have played a large part in determine the route taken to the final outcomes, but it is through critical thinking and structured methodologies that we have got there.
Alignment and luck are somethings that are not talked about much, but I have had the benefit of orchestrating alignments and generating much of my own luck in terms of opportunities. Things move at different paces within organisations, be it organisational structures, processes, systems and tools, and people, complicated by that fact people also work at different altitudes. Getting all these elements aligned is critical, before you even get started with the technical and commercial complexities. “I’m a great believer in luck, and I find that the harder I work, the more I have of it” (Thomas Jefferson)
Time has taught me that just like orienteering, the fastest and quickest route between two points is not necessarily a direct straight line between them. Complex systems don’t give their answers up easily in a linear fashion. “Strong men believe in cause and effect” (Ralph Waldo) but make sure you don’t deceive yourself into seeing correlations where there are none, or where they take time to mature and reveal themselves.