Part 7 Mastering the Delivery Phase in Project Management

Welcome back to our series exploring the Air Traffic Control approach to project management. After navigating through the planning, approval, and procurement stages, we now turn our focus to a pivotal phase: Delivery. This is where all the components and services procured are brought together to create the project’s intended outcome. Much like ensuring that all parts of an aircraft are correctly assembled and functioning before takeoff, this phase is critical for the successful realization of the project.

Step 07: Delivery Ensuring Everything is Ready for Arrival

The Delivery phase is where the project’s plans and preparations are translated into physical reality. This is the stage where the project’s products or services are created, tested, and prepared for launch or implementation.

Implementing the Delivery Plan

The delivery process involves several key activities:
Integration of Procured Elements: Assembling all the components and services procured during the previous phase. This might involve coordinating multiple suppliers and integrating various parts of a system or service.
Quality Assurance and Testing: Rigorously testing each component and the entire system to ensure they meet the project specifications and quality standards. This could include both in-house testing and user acceptance testing to validate functionality and performance.
Adjustments and Optimizations: Making necessary adjustments based on testing outcomes and feedback to ensure optimal performance of the project deliverables.

The Role of the PMO: Quality Control and Coordination

In the Air Traffic Control metaphor, the PMO oversees the delivery phase much like air traffic controllers monitor the safe landing of aircraft. This oversight ensures that all parts of the project are correctly aligned and functioning together as expected. The PMO’s role involves:
Monitoring Progress: Keeping track of delivery milestones and ensuring that the project remains on schedule.
Quality Oversight: Ensuring that all delivery activities meet the set quality standards and project requirements.
Facilitating Communication: Ensuring clear and open communication channels between all stakeholders, suppliers, and team members involved in the delivery phase.

Challenges in the Delivery Phase

Delivering a project can present numerous challenges that need to be managed effectively:
Integration Issues: Difficulties in integrating components from different suppliers or departments, which may not always fit together seamlessly.
Scope Creep: The project’s scope may start to drift as additional features or functionality are requested, threatening the project timeline and budget.
Supplier and Logistics Problems: Delays or quality issues with suppliers can significantly impact the project’s progress and outcomes.

Best Practices for Effective Delivery

To ensure a smooth delivery phase, project managers should employ several best practices:
Detailed Planning and Scheduling: Break down the delivery phase into manageable parts with clear timelines and responsibilities.
Stakeholder Engagement: Keep all stakeholders engaged and informed throughout the delivery phase to ensure their continued support and to manage their expectations.
Regular Reviews and Adjustments: Conduct regular review meetings to assess progress, discuss challenges, and make necessary adjustments to the plan.

Ensuring a Smooth Transition to the Next Phase

The ultimate goal of the delivery phase is to prepare the project for the next steps, whether that involves launching a new product, implementing a new system, or transitioning to an operational state. This requires:
Comprehensive Documentation: Ensure all project documentation is complete and up-to-date, providing a valuable resource for future maintenance and support.
Training and Support: Prepare end-users and support teams with the necessary training and documentation to ensure they can effectively use and maintain the project outputs.
Final Quality Assurance: Conduct a final round of testing and quality assurance to ensure everything is functioning as expected before transitioning to the next phase.

Looking Forward

As we approach the final stages of our project’s journey, our next post will discuss the Training phase, focusing on preparing end-users and ensuring they are ready to effectively utilize the project’s deliverables.

Thank you for continuing to follow this series on the Air Traffic Control approach to project management. Through these insights, we hope to provide you with the tools and knowledge to guide your projects to successful completion.

#ProjectManagement #DeliveryPhase #QualityAssurance #PMO #ProjectDelivery #OperationalExcellence #ProjectDocumentation #StakeholderEngagement


Part 6 Navigating the Procurement Process in Project Management

Welcome back to our series on the Air Traffic Control approach to project management. Having previously discussed the transition from planning to execution, today’s focus shifts to a critical operational aspect of project execution: Procurement. This phase involves acquiring the resources and services necessary to advance the project, akin to ensuring an aircraft is fully equipped and fueled for its journey.

Step 06: Procurement Ensuring You Have Everything for the Project

Procurement in project management involves the strategic process of purchasing or acquiring the goods and services needed to fulfill the project’s objectives. This phase must be handled with precision and strategic foresight to ensure that the project remains on schedule and within budget.

Understanding the Scope of Procurement

The procurement process begins with a clear understanding of the project’s requirements. This includes:
Specification Development: Clearly defining what needs to be procured, including the quality standards and timelines for delivery.
Supplier Selection: Identifying and selecting vendors who can deliver the required goods and services. This often involves soliciting bids and evaluating suppliers based on cost, quality, reliability, and service.
Contract Negotiation: Finalizing terms with selected suppliers to ensure favorable conditions. This includes negotiating prices, terms of delivery, warranties, and after-sales service.

The Role of the PMO: Strategic Oversight

In our ATC metaphor, the PMO plays a crucial role in ensuring that the procurement process aligns with the overall project objectives and compliance standards. This includes:
Reviewing and Approving Procurement Plans: Ensuring that the procurement strategy is robust and aligns with the project goals.
Monitoring Procurement Activities: Overseeing the procurement process to ensure it adheres to organizational policies and project specifications.
Risk Management: Identifying and mitigating risks associated with procurement, such as delays, cost overruns, and quality issues.

Engaging Stakeholders in the Procurement Process

Effective stakeholder engagement is crucial during the procurement phase. Stakeholders can provide insights into potential suppliers, help define essential criteria for selection, and assist in evaluating bids. This collaborative approach ensures that the procurement decisions are well-informed and broadly supported.

Navigating Procurement Challenges

Procurement can present several challenges that require strategic management:
Supplier Issues: Delays, quality problems, or financial issues with suppliers can jeopardize project timelines.
Cost Escalation: Unexpected increases in prices for materials or services can strain the project budget.
Compliance and Legal Issues: Navigating the legal aspects of contracts and ensuring compliance with procurement regulations can be complex and time-consuming.

Best Practices in Procurement

To effectively manage the procurement phase, project managers should adopt several best practices:
Conduct Thorough Market Research: Understanding the market and the capabilities of potential suppliers to ensure the best selection.
Implement Robust Vendor Management Processes: Establishing strong relationships with suppliers through regular communication and performance reviews.
Utilize Technology: Leveraging procurement software to streamline processes, from vendor selection to contract management.

Maintaining Quality and Integrity

Ensuring that all procured items meet the project’s quality standards is critical. Quality control processes should be integrated into every step of the procurement phase, from initial vendor selection through to the final delivery of goods and services.

Looking Ahead

As we continue our journey through the project lifecycle, our next post will explore the delivery phase. This crucial stage involves integrating the procured resources into the project, ensuring that everything works harmoniously to move the project towards its successful completion.

Thank you for following along in this series on the Air Traffic Control approach to project management. Through these posts, we aim to provide actionable insights and strategies that can help you manage your projects more effectively, ensuring they reach their destinations safely and efficiently.

#ProjectManagement #Procurement #SupplyChain #ATCApproach #VendorManagement #RiskManagement #ProjectExecution #StrategicSourcing #ContractNegotiation


Part 5 Take-Off and Direction: Transitioning from Planning to Execution in Project Management

Welcome back to our ongoing series where we explore the Air Traffic Control approach to project management. Having covered the preparation and approval stages in previous posts, today we focus on a critical transition phase in any project: from detailed planning to active execution. This stage, akin to the actual take-off of an aircraft, marks the point where plans are put into motion and the project begins to materialize.

Step 05: Take-Off and Direction Project Execution

This phase is where the rubber meets the road, or more aptly, where the aircraft leaves the runway. It’s about setting the project into motion and ensuring that the direction set during the planning phase is followed, adjusting as necessary to navigate the realities encountered during execution.

Initiating the Project

The initiation of the project is the first critical task post-approval. This involves:
Mobilizing the Team: Assembling the project team and ensuring that all members understand their roles and responsibilities as outlined in the Project Initiation Document.
Allocating Resources: Distributing the resources that were secured during the planning phase, ensuring that each aspect of the project is adequately supported.
Establishing Communication Channels: Setting up effective, clear lines of communication among all stakeholders and team members to facilitate smooth operations and timely updates.

Setting the Direction

Once the project is initiated, setting and maintaining the correct direction is crucial. This involves:
Implementing the Project Plan: Following the steps laid out in the detailed project plan, beginning with the most immediate and critical tasks.
Monitoring and Controlling: Regularly checking the project’s progress against the plan, ensuring that the project remains on track and making adjustments as necessary.
Engaging Stakeholders: Keeping all stakeholders informed and involved through regular updates, meetings, and reports to maintain their support and address any concerns promptly.

Navigating Challenges

The transition from planning to execution can often be turbulent. Project managers must be adept at navigating these challenges:
Scope Creep: Vigilantly managing changes to the project scope, ensuring any deviations are necessary, approved, and documented.
Resource Allocation: Continuously monitoring resource usage to avoid overruns or shortages that could impact project timelines or outcomes.
Stakeholder Expectations: Managing expectations realistically, especially as project realities begin to unfold, which may differ from initial plans.

Adapting to Real-Time Feedback

Just as a pilot must make real-time adjustments based on weather conditions and air traffic, project managers must adapt to the realities on the ground. This may involve:
Iterative Planning: Using agile methodologies to adjust the project plan based on the outcomes of completed tasks and new information.
Problem Solving: Addressing unforeseen issues swiftly and effectively to prevent delays or cost overruns.
Risk Management: Updating risk management strategies to handle new risks as they become apparent.

Maintaining Momentum

Keeping a project moving forward requires continuous effort and proactive leadership. Key strategies include:
Motivating the Team: Keeping the project team motivated and focused on the objectives, celebrating milestones to maintain morale.
Clear Reporting: Providing clear, concise, and regular reporting to stakeholders to illustrate progress and justify continued support.
Quality Control: Ensuring that all project deliverables meet the quality standards set during the planning phase.

Looking Forward

As we move forward in this series, the next post will focus on the procurement phase, a critical component of project execution that involves securing all necessary goods, services, and works required to deliver on the project objectives. We will explore how effective procurement strategies are crucial to maintaining project timelines and budgets.

Thank you for following this journey through the Air Traffic Control approach to project management. As we delve deeper into each phase, our aim is to provide insights that can help you elevate your project management skills and lead your projects to successful completion.

#ProjectManagement #ExecutionPhase #ProjectDirection #ATCApproach #TeamManagement #StakeholderEngagement #RiskManagement #QualityControl #Leadership


Part 4 Securing the Final Clearances: The Crucial Phase of Project Approval

Welcome back to our series on the Air Traffic Control approach to project management. Having successfully navigated the stages of pre-flight checks and detailed flight planning, we now arrive at a pivotal moment in our project’s journey: obtaining the final permission to take off. This stage, akin to a pilot receiving the final go-ahead from the control tower, involves securing all necessary approvals to transition from planning to active project execution.

Step 04: Permission to Take-Off Project Approval

In this phase, the project’s readiness is scrutinized through a series of rigorous reviews to ensure that all systems are “go” for a successful launch. Just as air traffic control must ensure that all conditions are right for a safe takeoff, the Project Management Office (PMO) and stakeholders must confirm that the project plan, resources, and risk management strategies are fully aligned and ready to be implemented.

Developing the Decision Paper

A key component of this stage is the Decision Paper, a document that encapsulates all critical aspects of the project for review by senior management or the board. This paper should effectively communicate the strategic fit of the project, operational impacts, human resources requirements, and alignment with financial and governance frameworks. Here are some essential elements to include:

Strategic Fit: Demonstrates how the project aligns with the broader strategic goals and initiatives of the organization.
Operational Impact: Assesses how the project will affect existing operations and what measures are in place to manage these impacts.
Resource Allocation: Details the human, technological, and financial resources required and ensures their availability and optimal use.
Risk Management: Updates the risk assessment to include any new risks identified during the planning phase and outlines mitigation strategies.
Governance Compliance: Confirms that the project meets all internal and external governance and compliance requirements.

The Role of the PMO: Ensuring Airspace Safety

In our air traffic control metaphor, the PMO plays a critical role similar to that of air traffic controllers during the final pre-takeoff checks. The PMO must ensure that the project has met all necessary conditions and that potential risks are managed effectively. This governance role is crucial for maintaining oversight and ensuring that the project does not proceed without meeting all required criteria.

Engaging Stakeholders for Final Approval

Stakeholder engagement is crucial at this stage. It’s important to involve all key stakeholders in the final approval process to ensure that there are no unresolved concerns or objections. This can be facilitated through presentations, meetings, and discussions where stakeholders can voice their final thoughts and give their blessings for the project to proceed.

Challenges in Securing Approval

Securing final approval can be challenging. Potential obstacles might include:

Stakeholder Resistance: Resistance from stakeholders due to differing priorities or concerns about the project’s impact on other areas of the organization.
Resource Constraints: Limitations in budget or personnel can lead to hesitancy in giving the final green light.
Changing External Factors: External changes such as economic shifts, regulatory updates, or market dynamics can affect the feasibility or desirability of proceeding with the project at this stage.

To overcome these challenges, effective leadership, clear communication, and the ability to adapt to feedback and external changes are essential. Project leaders must be adept at negotiation and persuasion, ensuring stakeholders understand the benefits and strategic importance of the project.

Preparing for Takeoff

With approval secured, the project is ready to move from the theoretical and planning phases into real-world execution. This transition is critical as it sets the tone for the operational phase of the project. It requires detailed coordination and communication to ensure that all team members are aligned and ready to move forward with a clear understanding of their roles and responsibilities.

Looking Ahead

As we prepare for our next phase, “Take-Off and Direction,” we will explore how projects transition into the execution phase, setting the stage for actual work to begin. This upcoming discussion will focus on initiating the project, mobilizing the project team, and beginning to execute the plan as laid out in the Project Initiation Document.

Thank you for following along in this series on the Air Traffic Control approach to project management. As we continue to draw parallels between managing projects and controlling air traffic, we uncover valuable insights that can help us improve our project management practices and achieve higher success rates in our initiatives.

#ProjectManagement #Leadership #ATCApproach #ProjectApproval #RiskManagement #Governance #StrategicAlignment #StakeholderEngagement #ProjectExecution


Part 3 Navigating the Project Skyway: Mastering Flight Planning in Project Management

Welcome Back to Our Series on Air Traffic Control in Project Management

In our previous posts, we introduced the innovative Air Traffic Control (ATC) approach to project management and explored how to prepare a robust business case and secure permission to taxi. Today, we dive into the third critical phase of our project management journey: Flight Planning. This step is all about transforming our initial plans into a detailed, actionable project blueprint.

Step 03: Flight Planning Project Planning

Flight planning in aviation is a detailed process involving route selection, weather considerations, fuel calculations, and contingency plans. Similarly, in project management, this step involves fleshing out the initial project idea into a comprehensive Project Initiation Document (PID). This document serves as the master plan that guides the entire project through to successful completion.

Developing the Project Initiation Document (PID)

The creation of a PID is akin to plotting a flight path. It includes defining the detailed scope, objectives, and expected outcomes of the project. Here are some of the crucial elements that should be included in a PID:

Project Brief: Clearly defines the project’s aim, scope, and objectives to ensure all stakeholders have a unified understanding.
Roles and Responsibilities: Outlines who is involved in the project and what their specific responsibilities are, ensuring accountability and clarity.
Risk Management: Identifies potential risks and outlines strategies to mitigate them, similar to how pilots plan for unexpected weather.
Deliverables Register: Lists all expected outputs of the project, providing clear milestones and checkpoints.
Stakeholder and Communications Plan: Ensures ongoing engagement and effective communication with all stakeholders throughout the project lifecycle.
Budget Details: A refined budget that aligns with the project’s goals and available resources.

The Role of the PMO: The Strategic Navigator

In our ATC metaphor, the PMO serves as the strategic navigator, providing oversight and ensuring that the flight plan adheres to the predefined route. The PMO reviews the PID to ensure comprehensiveness, feasibility, and alignment with organizational goals. This role is crucial in preventing project drift and ensuring that the project remains on its intended course.

Securing the Flight Plan Approval

Just as a flight plan must be filed and approved before takeoff, the project plan requires validation and approval from key stakeholders and decision-makers. This step reassures all parties that the project has been thoroughly vetted and is ready to move forward.

Strategic Alignment Check: Ensures the project contributes to the broader strategic goals of the organization.
Operational Feasibility Review: Confirms that the operational aspects of the business can support the project’s implementation.
Governance and Compliance Assurance: Verifies that the project meets all regulatory and internal compliance standards.

Engaging Stakeholders: Ensuring a Smooth Takeoff

Effective stakeholder engagement is crucial at this stage to maintain enthusiasm and support for the project. Regular updates, meetings, and feedback sessions help in fine-tuning the project plan and aligning it with the expectations and needs of all involved.

Overcoming Planning Challenges

Flight planning isn’t without its turbulence. Challenges such as scope creep, resource constraints, and changing regulatory environments can necessitate frequent adjustments to the project plan. To navigate these challenges, project managers must:
Remain Flexible: Adapt the project plan in response to new insights and changes without straying from the overall project goals.
Communicate Proactively: Keep all stakeholders informed about changes and the reasons behind them to maintain trust and support.
Prioritize Risk Management: Continuously update and refine risk management strategies to address emerging threats and opportunities.

Setting the Stage for Successful Execution

With a detailed and approved project plan in place, our project is now poised for the next phase: gaining the final permissions to execute. This meticulous preparation sets the stage for successful project execution, ensuring that each team member knows their role and the resources are aligned to support the project’s objectives.

Stay tuned for our next post, where we will explore “Permission to Take-Off Project Approval,” focusing on securing the final go-ahead to launch our project into action. By understanding and applying these detailed planning strategies, we can enhance our project management practices and steer our projects toward success.

Thank you for joining me on this insightful exploration into the detailed planning phase of project management using the ATC metaphor. As we continue our series, I look forward to sharing more about how these strategic elements can be effectively applied to your projects.

#ProjectManagement #StrategicPlanning #ATCApproach #ProjectPlanning #RiskManagement #StakeholderEngagement #PMO #Leadership #ExecutionReady


Part 2 Fueling Your Project’s Journey: The Art of Securing Permission to Taxi

Welcome Back to Our Series on Air Traffic Control in Project Management

In our inaugural post, we embarked on a transformative journey, adopting the Air Traffic Control (ATC) approach to project management. We explored the initial phase of pre-flight planning and checks, akin to laying the groundwork for a successful flight. Today, we dive into the second crucial step of this journey: Fueling your project and obtaining permission to taxi, where we prepare to turn our strategic plans into actionable steps.

Step 02: Fuel & Permission to Taxi Project Mandate

Just as a plane cannot move without fuel, a project cannot proceed without the necessary resources and mandates. This stage is about securing the energy (budgets and resources) and the clearances (approvals) required to move the project from theory into practice. It involves a deeper engagement with stakeholders and a rigorous validation of the project’s feasibility and alignment with organizational priorities.

Building a Compelling Business Case

Before a project can taxi towards the runway, it must be equipped with a robust business case that justifies the investment. This involves:
Cost-Benefit Analysis: Is the anticipated value of the project worth the investment? This includes a thorough assessment of potential returns and risks.
Strategic Alignment: How does the project align with the broader strategic objectives of the organization?
Resource Allocation: Do we have the right resources, and how are they allocated to ensure project success?
Stakeholder Agreement: Gaining consensus and approval from all relevant stakeholders, confirming that the project serves a shared organizational vision.

The Role of the PMO: Gatekeeper of Project Traffic

In our metaphor, the PMO acts as the air traffic control tower, ensuring that only well-prepared projects proceed to the runway. This oversight role is critical to prevent project collisions and ensure that each project has the space and resources to succeed without interference or overlap with other initiatives. The PMO evaluates the project’s readiness by scrutinizing the business case, much like air traffic controllers who must approve each plane before it taxis.

Securing the Permission to Taxi

Once the project has been fueled by a solid business case, the next challenge is obtaining the permission to taxi. This permission comes in the form of project mandates and approvals from senior management. It’s akin to getting the green light from the control tower, signifying that all preconditions have been met and the project is clear to move to its next phase.

Governance and Compliance: Ensuring all regulatory and governance frameworks are adhered to, thereby safeguarding the project against future compliance issues.
Operational Readiness: Confirming that the operational aspects of the organization are prepared to support the project’s implementation.
Financial Approval: Securing the necessary financial endorsements to allocate budgets and resources effectively.

Engaging Stakeholders: The Key to Successful Taxiing

Effective stakeholder engagement is akin to having a proficient ground crew. They ensure that the plane taxis smoothly without disruptions. For a project, this means keeping all stakeholders informed, engaged, and supportive throughout this phase. It involves transparent communication about the project’s progress, challenges, and changes to ensure alignment and buy-in.

Navigating Challenges

Securing permission to taxi is not always straightforward. Challenges such as competing priorities, limited resources, or stakeholder disagreements can delay or even halt progress. Overcoming these requires:
Strong Leadership: Project leaders must navigate through organizational complexities and advocate effectively for the project.
Adaptive Strategies: Being prepared to pivot or adjust the project approach in response to new information or organizational changes.
Continuous Communication: Keeping channels open to address concerns, manage expectations, and maintain stakeholder support.

Preparing for the Next Phase

With the project now fueled and permission granted, we are nearly ready to enter the runway. However, the journey from planning to execution involves meticulous attention to detail and readiness to adapt to changing conditions.

Stay tuned for our next installment where we will delve into “Flight Planning Project Planning.” This phase is about detailing the blueprint of our project’s journey, ensuring every aspect is mapped out clearly, from roles and responsibilities to timelines and milestones.

Thank you for joining me on this insightful exploration of the ATC approach to project management. As we continue to draw parallels between the disciplined world of air traffic control and the strategic realm of project management, I invite you to reflect on how these principles can be applied to enhance your projects and drive them towards successful outcomes.

#ProjectManagement #Leadership #ATCApproach #BusinessCase #StrategicAlignment #ResourceManagement #StakeholderEngagement #ProjectSuccess


The Air Traffic Control Approach to Project Management: A New Perspective

Welcome to the Series on Air Traffic Control in Project Management

As we navigate the complex world of project management, it’s essential to find models that resonate and simplify our approach, ensuring clarity and effectiveness in execution. Today, I’m excited to introduce a compelling metaphor that redefines traditional project management methodologies: the Air Traffic Control (ATC) approach. This series will guide you through this innovative model, explaining how it parallels the operations of air traffic control to streamline and secure project management processes.

The Concept: Project Management as Air Traffic Control

Imagine the Project Management Office (PMO) as the air traffic control tower at a bustling airport. The PMO, like air traffic control, oversees the orderly flow of projects (airplanes) without directly managing every detail. This analogy extends to various roles within a project: the project itself is the airplane, the sponsor is the plane owner, the project manager is the pilot, and the project delivery team represents the crew. Each stakeholder and participant embodies the passengers, while the budget serves as the essential fuel that keeps the project airborne.

This metaphor is not just a simplistic analogy; it is a strategic framework that helps in visualizing project management as a dynamic, controlled, and phased journey—akin to a plane’s take-off, flight, and landing. It emphasizes the PMO’s role in ensuring safe and efficient operations, guiding projects through their lifecycle while avoiding the micromanagement that often hampers creativity and agility.

Why Use This Metaphor?

The air traffic control metaphor is particularly powerful for several reasons:
Clarity: It simplifies complex project management scenarios, making it easier for everyone involved to understand their roles and responsibilities.
Risk Management: Just as air traffic controllers prevent collisions and manage unforeseen events, the PMO mitigates risks, ensuring that projects do not “collide” by overlapping or conflicting with each other.
Governance: It reinforces the idea of oversight and strategic governance without direct interference, promoting a balance between autonomy and control.
Communication: Ensures continuous and clear communication, crucial for the successful navigation and management of any project.

Step 01: Pre-Flight Planning and Checks Business Case

The first step in our journey using the ATC approach is Pre-Flight Planning and Checks, focusing on developing a robust business case. This stage is akin to the meticulous checks a flight undergoes before clearance for take-off. It’s about ensuring that the project’s goals are viable, aligned with strategic objectives, and have the necessary approvals and resources to move forward successfully.

Initial Idea & Objective Clarification: Here, we clarify the project’s purpose. How does it align with the broader strategic goals of the organization? Is it operationally feasible?
Summary Plan & Budget: A high-level plan and preliminary budget are established to assess resource allocation and financial feasibility.
Stakeholder Alignment: Ensuring all potential project stakeholders understand and support the project’s aims and implications.

This phase is crucial as it sets the trajectory for the project. A well-defined business case helps in securing the necessary buy-in from senior management and stakeholders, similar to how a pilot would not be cleared for taxiing without the go-ahead from the control tower.

PMO’s Role: Ensuring Safety and Readiness

Just as air traffic control would not let a plane taxi without confirming its readiness, the PMO must ensure that all pre-flight checks are completed satisfactorily. They provide the governance needed to move to the next phase but do not micromanage the specifics—these are for the project manager (pilot) to handle.

Towards a Successful Takeoff

With the business case solidified, our project is ready to taxi towards the runway, setting the stage for a successful lift-off. In upcoming posts, we will delve deeper into the next steps of this journey, exploring how to fuel the project and secure permissions to advance through each project phase effectively.

Stay tuned as we navigate this exciting approach, learning how to manage our projects more effectively and efficiently with every installment of this series. By adopting the ATC metaphor, we can transform the way we think about and execute project management, ensuring smoother, risk-managed, and successful project deliveries.

Join me next time as we discuss ‘Fuel & Permission to Taxi’—ensuring our project is not only cleared for the next stage but also adequately resourced to reach its intended destination.

#ProjectManagement #Leadership #Innovation #ATCApproach #BusinessStrategy #RiskManagement #ProjectPlanning #StrategicGovernance #PMO #AirTrafficControl #ProjectSuccess


AI, HR, and Performance Management

The recent webinar on AI, HR, and Performance Management, led by Dr. Simon D. Schafheitle, Assistant Professor at the University of Twente, was an enlightening journey through the complexities of modern performance management. His expertise illuminated the nuanced balance between utilizing artificial intelligence to advance performance management systems and the ethical considerations that emerge with increased datafication and monitoring.

Dr. Schafheitle masterfully traced the evolution of performance management from its foundational theories to the present day, marked by sophisticated electronic monitoring and advanced data analytics. This historical perspective was pivotal in appreciating the advancements in employee monitoring and the significance of the current technological landscape in performance management.

A compelling insight from Dr. Schafheitle’s talk was the critical view that technology, while offering vast potential for innovation in performance management, is not a universal solution. It introduces a host of complexities and ethical dilemmas necessitating careful and thoughtful application. The discussion around the concept of datafication—transforming every employee action into quantifiable data—brought forth important considerations regarding privacy, the risk of dehumanization, and the importance of ensuring that technological implementations align with the organization’s values and strategic objectives.

Emphasizing the need for a holistic and vertically integrated approach to performance management was another key takeaway. Dr. Schafheitle highlighted the importance of performance management practices that are not only interlinked but also in harmony with the organization’s broader goals. This approach is crucial for fostering a workplace where technology supports and enhances human endeavors, rather than detracting from them.

Furthermore, Dr. Schafheitle shed light on the pivotal role of leadership in successfully navigating the integration of technology within performance management. He stressed the importance of leaders being cognizant of the broader impacts of technological tools on organizational culture and employee well-being.

The ethical considerations Dr. Schafheitle presented served as a vital reminder of the responsibilities entailed in integrating AI and data into performance management systems. As we move forward, striking a balance between leveraging technological advancements and adhering to ethical, humane workplace practices is of utmost importance.

Reflecting on Dr. Schafheitle’s webinar, it’s evident that the journey ahead in performance management, amidst the rise of AI and datafication, is complex yet full of potential. HR professionals, are tasked with navigating this evolving landscape with diligence, ensuring that our approaches to performance management not only enhance the human experience at work but also align with the overarching goals of our organizations.

I wonder what Data Protection Professionals would make of this?

Tim HJ Rogers
Consult | CoCreate | Deliver

I support people and teams to grow, perform and succeed unlocking potential as a partner Consultant, Coach, Project and Change Manager. Together we can deliver projects and change, and improve the confidence, capacity, drive and desire of the people I work with.

ICF Trained Coach | MBA Management Consultant | PRINCE2 Project Manager, Agile Scrum Master | AMPG Change Practitioner | Mediation Practitioner | BeTheBusiness Mentor | 4 x GB Gold Medalist | First Aid for Mental Health | Certificate in Applied Therapeutic Skills

#people #process #performance #projects #programmes #pmo #change #processimprovement #projectmanagement #changemanagement #workshops #mediation #coach #icfcoach #mentor #facilitation #training #jersey #channelislands


The True Measure of Training: Outcomes, Not Entertainment

In the realm of professional development, the allure of training courses often lies in their promise of enhancing skills and know-how. Yet, the underlying truth is starkly different. Training, no matter how advanced, cannot surmount the barriers erected by an inert culture or a lack of motivation. This realization prompts a critical reevaluation of our approach to professional training and its objectives.

The Misconception of Training Effectiveness

Traditionally, organizations have leaned heavily on training courses as a solution to improve employee performance and know-how. The assumption is that a lack of skills is the primary hurdle to better performance. However, the real issue often lies not in the “know-how” but in the “will-do.” The effectiveness of training should not be gauged by how engaging or entertaining the course was. Instead, the focus should shift to the tangible outcomes and outputs in the workplace following the training period.

Real Value in Post-Training Outcomes

The true value of any training program is revealed in the subsequent 90 days. It’s in this critical period that the fruits of training are either harvested or lost. Therefore, setting clear, measurable targets before embarking on any training is crucial. For instance, if the goal of a training program is to improve customer satisfaction scores from 4/10 to 9/10, then the success of that training should be evaluated based on achieving this specific outcome within the designated timeframe.

This approach necessitates a departure from traditional metrics such as course satisfaction (c-sat) and Net Promoter Scores (NPS). While these indicators may reflect the immediate reception of the training, they do not necessarily correlate with productive behavior or profitability post-training. The real question is not whether the participants were happy or entertained, but whether they are able to apply what they learned to make tangible progress towards their targets.

Shifting the Focus to Application

To harness the full potential of training, it’s imperative to enter these courses with a clear understanding of what needs to be learned, done, and applied afterward. This clarity can transform the way training effectiveness is measured, moving away from superficial indicators of success to more meaningful assessments of progress and application in the workplace.

Furthermore, by setting specific goals and expectations for post-training application, organizations can foster a culture of accountability and continuous improvement. This not only enhances the relevance of the training but also ensures that the investment in professional development yields real, measurable returns.


In conclusion, the paradigm shift from evaluating training based on entertainment value to focusing on real-world applications and outcomes is essential. By doing so, organizations can ensure that their training programs are not just enjoyable experiences but catalysts for significant improvement and growth. It’s time to embrace a more outcome-oriented approach to training, one that prioritizes the application of skills in the workplace and the achievement of specific, measurable goals. Only then can we unlock the true value of training and ensure that it serves its intended purpose of driving progress and enhancing performance.

Tim HJ Rogers
Consult | CoCreate | Deliver

I support people and teams to grow, perform and succeed unlocking potential as a partner Consultant, Coach, Project and Change Manager. Together we can deliver projects and change, and improve the confidence, capacity, drive and desire of the people I work with.

ICF Trained Coach | MBA Management Consultant | PRINCE2 Project Manager, Agile Scrum Master | AMPG Change Practitioner | Mediation Practitioner | BeTheBusiness Mentor | 4 x GB Gold Medalist | First Aid for Mental Health | Certificate in Applied Therapeutic Skills

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The Challenge of Making Data-Driven Decisions

In Jersey, there’s a common sentiment that we lack the data necessary for data-driven decisions. However, from my experience, the issue isn’t the scarcity of data; it’s quite the opposite. We’re inundated with data, found in various isolated pockets around us. The real challenge lies not in the quantity of data but in our ability to effectively analyze and derive meaningful insights from it. Often, we struggle to establish significant measures that could direct our focus efficiently.

Coming from a sporting background, where metrics such as boat speed, power output, and other performance indicators in rowing are meticulously measured, I’ve seen firsthand how targeted data analysis can enhance performance. These measurements allow for focused improvement efforts and clear tracking of progress. Surprisingly, this meticulous approach to data and performance measurement seems to be missing in the business world. It astounds me that many organizations lack clearly defined Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) or Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) that objectively quantify their goals and the extent of their achievements.

For instance, claims like “our website hits increased by 76%” are all too common, yet they fail to convey the real impact of such a change. Was this increase from 10 to 17 visitors, or from 10,000 to 17,600? Did these additional visits translate into sales, and if so, what was the value of those sales? Which specific products were affected? This is in stark contrast to how companies like Amazon operate, leveraging detailed data on every aspect of customer interaction—from browsing history to purchasing patterns—to optimize their marketing and sales strategies.

While not every organization aims to emulate Amazon, it’s crucial to acknowledge the importance of data in our decision-making processes. Simply collecting data without analyzing it is a wasted effort, incurring costs without yielding benefits. Moreover, focusing on convenient but irrelevant data, such as whether participants “enjoyed” a course rather than its tangible impact on their skills or the organization, can be misleading.

In conclusion, as we navigate the vast seas of data available to us, our focus should not just be on collection but on thoughtful analysis and application. It’s time for organizations to embrace data-driven strategies that genuinely enhance performance and achieve measurable outcomes.