3 CORNERSTONES FOR SUCCESSFUL PROJECT MANAGEMENT

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PROJECT MANAGEMENT IS DEAD!

Whatever your industry, transformation is going faster than ever before. More stakeholders, more organizations are involved. Not to talk about the digital transformation that is raising the bar even higher. In order to keep up with the pace, companies have to initiate many parallel initiatives that involve cross-functional teams with both technical and non-technical background. 

All these elements are increasing the need for a solid, yet flexible, change control management. However, due to the changing business environment, the project and change management paradigms that we have been using for decades are now under high pressure and change practitioners are now in need of new concepts and frameworks to tackle today’s growth challenges.

Traditional project and change management methodologies like PRINCE2 (PRojects IN Controlled Environments) and PMBOK assume a stable and controlled environment. They do not take into account the disruptive dynamics we face these days. Their main focus is on cost control, rather than impact and value creation. And last but not least, everything is driven by operation processes, procedures and reporting. The extremely critical factor of stakeholder engagement, is heavily underestimated in traditional methodologies and frameworks.

Due to new shifts in our business environment, project and change practitioners are in need of new paradigms. According to Wendy Hirsch, the statistic that says 70-90% of changes fail is false. However, we cannot and should not shy away from improving change success rates.

3 CORNERSTONES FOR SUCCESSFUL TRANSFORMATION AND PROJECT MANAGEMENT

In order to navigate projects and change requests in a chaotic reality, many elements from the traditional project methodologies can be recycled but must be complemented. Best-in-class initiatives are characterized by a strong for focus on 3 cornerstones. 

01 IMPACT AND VALUE

This one sounds simple and straightforward. However, many requests for change start with a description of WHAT has change, rather WHY something has to change.

Successful changes 

  1. start with a very clear description of the intended impact the team wants to achieve
  2. are designed to deliver work incrementally with a focus on realizing – and testing – impact as soon as possible
  3. are being followed up with few critical leading impact KPI’s

02 STAKEHOLDER ENGAGEMENT

Successful change involves people with different professional expertise and background. In many occasions, stakeholders may even be located in different parts of the world.

The success of a change depends on the people working it, not on the procedures and methodologies they use to guide the changes. The ability to inspire and engage stakeholders is a project leader’s best competence. This does not imply that execution models are no good. A change initiative should typically have elements from both the traditional and the “new” approach. 

The skills and tools to bring all cross-functional stakeholders together around the same purpose, will eventually determine the value delivered by the change initiative. Hence, organizations should heavily focus on an invest in

  1. human capital, with the ability to bring stakeholders together and align them towards the same purpose
  2. a state-of-the-art project management and collaboration tool

03 TRANSPARENT FLOW

Having the right people with the right skills on the project does not guarantee any success. They need to collaborate. 

Use the following guidelines to instal a transparent flow of information, that is required to ensure continuous progression and delivery of the expected impact. 

  1. Avoid resource fragmentation and minimize the number of core team members per initiative
  2. Define fixed work delivery sprints (2 to 4 weeks) or milestones to improve flow and progress towards impact
  3. Build in sufficient opportunities for core member co-location so they can continuously realign and have sufficient opportunities to solve complex problems
  4. Use collaborative project management tools to keep all stakeholders – including non-core team members – in the loop and aware of the expectations (what, when, who and how) towards them and other stakeholders
  5. Use visuals to support the change and progress wherever possible

HOW TO GET STARTED WITH PROJECT AND CHANGE MANAGEMENT IN 9TEAMS?

9TEAMS is a ‘state-of-the-art’ project management and collaboration solution that has been developed by and for transformation practitioners. The cloud solution is being used in a context of ERP implementations, digital transformation and business realignment initiatives.  This highly scalable platform makes alignment and follow-up a breeze. It brings together all stakeholders, information, tasks, issues, requests and scenarios. Tech savvy or not, internal or external; save time, demonstrate compliance and get things done! 

Start a 30-day free trial now, import the templates you need and you’ll be up and running in a couple of minutes!

Contact our project management experts to schedule an online session to get you up and running in no time.