Project Management Culture: Necessity or Nuisance?

Project Management Culture: Necessity or Nuisance?

Project Management

This article was originally published on IPMA International. Written by Professor Jiwat Ram.

It is often suggested that organizations progress or perish courtesy their culture. In simple words, culture is a microcosm of unwritten norms, values, behavioural tendencies, and ways of doing things that are peculiarly characteristics of a system, such as an organization.

In a normal business organization with a more or less stable set of employees, culture will be quite well entrenched deep down in the foundation of organization and will be at the core of driving actions and behaviours of the organization; not varying great deal over extended periods of time unless something catastrophic happens. In fact, people not aligning themselves with the culture may even have to leave

the organization, hence the culture remaining intact most of the times, if not all. In hindsight, culture seems to be the only element in an organization that out-last most of the other elements, even the people and leaders who created the organization in the first place.

Project organizations are not different from non-project organizations as far as culture is concerned. Project organizations too have their own culture which can be termed as project management (PM) culture. Albeit to certain extent, PM culture varies with the changing eco-system of the project and the team composition.

In an organization that churns out a lot of projects with team members sharing work across several projects, the extent to which PM culture varies will be limited across the projects in that organization. Moreover, PM culture is often influenced by set of processes, hence if the processes are same, it is possible that the culture does not vary great deal. Continue reading “Project Management Culture: Necessity or Nuisance?”

New Perspective in Project Management

New Perspective in Project Management

Project Management

The PM4NGOs partner IPMA International collaborated to create the international workshop: “New perspective in Project Management”.

 

This article was originally published on IPMA International. Written by Sandra Mišić and Amin Saidoun.

On 9th of May 2018 Turkish Project Management Association in collaboration with IPMA and Gazi University organized an international workshop.

The topic with the title: “New perspective in Project Management” attracted over 150 attendees from private but mainly academic sector.

Both national and international speakers were invited to the event.

Dr Jesús Martínez Almela (Spain), IPMA President started the workshop with an opening speech, underlining that IPMA strongly supports the development of project management in the Turkey.

The workshop was organized in two sessions. The topic of the first session was New Standards in Project Management and the second one addressed Current Trends in Project Management. Continue reading “New Perspective in Project Management”

Risk Management – a risk itself

Risk Management – a risk itself

Development Sector, Project Management, Tools

This article was originally published by Trevor K Nelson.

We hear (and use) the terms Risk Identification and Risk Management to generally mean two distinct things. The identification of potential risks, and then after they’re identified, the management/mitigation to prevent those possibilities. But in reality they’re variations of the same process.

True. Risk Identification is the process of simply that – identifying potential risks to the project. And Risk Management is the process of mitigating against those potential risks.

But it doesn’t stop there. Risk Identification isn’t something that’s done a the beginning of the project, and then you shift to Risk Management. Risk identification is an ongoing process that should be done (at the very least) at the beginning of each new phase. Each new phase, each new work package, each new interaction with a vendor sets the stage for new potential risks. Continue reading “Risk Management – a risk itself”

Why adding budgeting skills to your project toolkit is important

Why adding budgeting skills to your project toolkit is important

Project Management, Tools

This article was originally published on Humentum by Terry Lewis.

Successful project outcomes require careful management of resources, including the significant sums of money donated to NGOs. That is why everyone involved in project planning and implementation should sharpen up their budgeting skills. In this blog I’ll share six important reasons why we should all have budgeting skills in our toolkits.

 

  1. KEEPING YOUR EYES ON THE PRIZE

As the saying goes: If you don’t know where you are going, you are sure to end up somewhere else. A budget is a monetary translation of an activity plan. It helps us to achieve project objectives. A budget is a critical part of the project planning and accountability process: it enables us to put a cost on every planned activity, and to keep track of progress to make sure we are achieving goals.

 

  1. WINNING MORE FUNDS FROM DONORS

Continue reading “Why adding budgeting skills to your project toolkit is important”

What are the project management challenges in the different business sectors?

What are the project management challenges in the different business sectors?

Project Management

This article was originally published on IPMA.

 

What are the main challenges facing different business sectors in Iceland in managing projects, as faced by representatives from different industries? This question was discussed at the annual spring conference organized jointly by the Icelandic Project Management Association and the MPM program (Master of Project Management) at Reykjavik University in 2017. Representatives of eight business sectors in Iceland came and gave brief presentations of these challenges. The seminar started with a short update on the general projectification of the Icelandic economy. Projects are a vital part of the economy and close to one third of working time in Icelandic organizations is devoted to project work. Some of the findings from this conference in Iceland are relevant for other countries. A summary of the talks is given below.

  • Major changes are ahead in the financial sector, driven by technological development and new EU regulations. The business models of commercial banks are changing, and they need to expand their project management capacity quickly to implement the forthcoming changes.
  • The healthcare sector is extremely complex, and all kinds of projects are carried out, IT projects, lean projects and change projects, to give a few examples. Projects in the healthcare sectors are often characterized many stakeholders, resources are limited, and staff has very limited time to participate in projects. The main challenges are to utilize time, increase value and reduce waste. Lean management has therefore become widely used in the sector.
  • A representative from higher education and research cited an international study that showed how important the effective management of projects is for the success of all companies. A student in the MPM program was cited, where he explained his decision to choose the MPM program rather than an MBA program; his reason was that there are much more projects to manage than companies.
  • It is a characteristic of the consulting sector that all revenues are created by selling the time of consultants, and the organization charts of the consultancies are very flat. The challenge here is that it is difficult to maintain overview of the use of resources, as each employee works in multiple projects simultaneously, and reports to many project managers. There is constant struggle over how to prioritize the use of employees between the different projects and clients.
  • Project selection can be a big challenge in product development companies and it is time to develop new tools, new selection models to help making better decisions and ensure better consensus in the choice of innovation projects.
  • The tourism industry has grown enormously in a short period of time. This has imposed big problems, there is lack of a holistic thinking for the industry, lack of strategy, low margin and there is lack of reliable data for policy making and decision making.
  • Power generation and distribution is an important industry with various project management challenges, some of them as basic as managing the chosen projects and steering them through the milestones. There are also problems regarding communication between the generations. Large groups of people are retiring, and younger people are talking over. The new generations work differently and think differently than the older generations, and effective communication between the generations needs to be managed.
  • There is considerable room for improvements in the governmental ministries. A major challenge here is the strong organizational hierarchy, a lack of follow-up of projects, limited effectiveness in project teams, and continuous struggle to understand the difference between urgent and important tasks. In the future, it is necessary to increase the interest in project management among managers and middle managers in the governmental ministries, as well as project management expertise.

Continue reading “What are the project management challenges in the different business sectors?”

APM FIVE Dimensions of Professionalism

APM FIVE Dimensions of Professionalism

Project Management

The Association for Project Management, the chartered body for the project profession, is committed to developing and promoting project and programme management through its FIVE Dimensions of Professionalism. In 2017, APM was awarded a Royal Charter as part of its strategy to raise awareness and standards in the profession. The receipt of a Royal Charter marks a significant achievement in the evolution of project management. There are a number of ways in which you can benefit from what we do, including: membership, qualifications, publications, events.” APM

APM FIVE Dimensions of Professionalism

This blog was originally published on APM.

The Association for Project Management, the chartered body for the project profession, supports professional values. The APM FIVE Dimensions of Professionalism provide a framework that helps you develop your career: Continue reading “APM FIVE Dimensions of Professionalism”

Global Migration’s Impact and Opportunities for Project Management

Global Migration’s Impact and Opportunities for Project Management

Development Sector

This blog was originally published on IPMA.

People are on the move! That´s one key conclusion of a report published by McKinsey Global Institute about global migration´s impacts and opportunities. Approximately 250 million people live outside their country of birth. The impact (at least in some regions) is a significant labour force growth (40-80% in top destinations between 2000 and 2014), migrants contributed 9.4% of the Global GDP, accounting to $6.7 trillion, much more than they would have produced in their own countries, migrants of all skill levels contribute to the productivity of the top destinations, and last but not least, they do not harm the long-run employment or wages of native workers.

 

More than 90 percent of the world’s 247 million cross-border migrants moved voluntarily, usually for economic reasons. The remaining 10 percent are refugees and asylum seekers who have fled to another country to escape conflict and persecution. Roughly half of these 24 million refugees and asylum seekers are in the Middle East and North Africa, reflecting the dominant pattern of flight to a neighbouring country. But the recent surge of arrivals in Europe focused the developed world’s attention on this issue. Roughly half of the world’s migrants have moved from developing to developed countries, where immigration is a key driver of population growth.

Workers moving to higher-productivity settings boosts global GDP. As already mentioned, migrants contributed roughly $6.7 trillion, or 9.4 percent, to global GDP in 2015—some $3 trillion more than they would have produced in their origin countries. North America captured up to $2.5 trillion of this output, while up to $2.3 trillion went to Western Europe. Migrants of all skill levels make a positive economic contribution, whether through innovation, entrepreneurship, or freeing up natives for higher-value work. Employment rates are slightly lower for immigrants than for native workers in top destinations, but this varies by skill level and by region of origin. Refugees typically take longer than voluntary migrants to integrate into the destination country. Immigrants generally earn higher wages by moving, but many studies have found their wages remain some 20 to 30 percent below those of comparable native-born workers. Continue reading “Global Migration’s Impact and Opportunities for Project Management”

No-Drama Project Management: Is it possible?

No-Drama Project Management: Is it possible?

Project Management

This blog was originally published on IPMA.

In hindsight, life is like an ensemble of a series of episodes of a drama with some episodes full of comedy and other full of climax. Oxford dictionary defines drama as “an exciting, emotional, or unexpected event or circumstance.”

Project management is no stranger to dramas. The often-reported ups and downs, twists and turns, excitements and dejections, good and bad, successes and failures make some people feel that perhaps project management is a full-scale drama production.

For the sake of developing an understanding, we define no-drama project management as being the state of consistency and stability in predicting events, and developing capabilities dynamically during project delivery to deal with those events as they unfold.

The question is, why project management is so eventful process, often associated with a series of unexpected circumstances, issues, problems and risks? Can there be a no-drama project management? Continue reading “No-Drama Project Management: Is it possible?”

Why PMD Pro?

Why PMD Pro?

PMD Pro

Among several project management methodologies, why PMD Pro? John Cropper is the PM4NGOs vice-chair and was one of the guide writers and talks about the PMD Pro Guide highlights.