<<

. 6
( 7)



>>


Team Training: Involved. Subteams will be trained in
groups, management personnel as a
separate group. Training is constant and
at a high level.

Applicable Skill Set: Principal


posal (RFP) or a Request For Quotation (RFQ), or, in international
terms, a Tender. The technical proposal consists of volumes and vol-
umes, the management proposal is large, and the cost proposal goes
on forever with costs being presented in at least four different ways.
Frequently, everything has classi¬ed appendixes.
Every company has its own methods and techniques for identifying
opportunities. Usually, large programs, such as this one, are initially
identi¬ed by a corporate marketing of¬ce colocated with a primary cus-
tomer somewhere. After identi¬cation and quali¬cation, the program
is usually assigned to a speci¬c division of the corporation.
Tracking opportunities are usually left to the assigned division with
the division marketer in the lead and the corporate marketer in atten-
dance whenever you meet with the customer. If you think the feudal
system was possessive, just wait until you see how the collocated mar-
keter operates. Sometimes they seem to be more customer than com-
pany. They are unusually possessive of their customer because they
have other divisions vying for other opportunities and because their
raises and bonuses are dependent on how well you interface with
˜˜their™™ customer. Who wouldn™t be possessive under these circum-
stances?
Most customers operate at ˜˜arm™s length.™™ That means they share
with you enough information to get the best they can out of you. You
must understand that everything the customer tells you, he has proba-
bly told someone else. The federal government, through the FARs, re-
quires this posture. You or a member of your capture team may be able
to pick up some critical piece of information that gives you an edge, but
the customer won™t usually give you an edge willingly. Tracking is a
sophisticated process, and unless you have in-depth knowledge of the



TLFeBOOK
156 APPLYING YOUR SKILLS TO PROJECTS AND PROGRAMS


process, it is best to leave the strategizing up to the marketer in charge
of the program.
Tracking begins once the program has been quali¬ed and continues
on through the proposal until award. Truthfully, tracking continues on
even after award, because it allows the marketers a different level of
access and perhaps more opportunity to ¬nd other programs. That™s
what they get paid for.
Bidding an opportunity begins with a top-down strategy. What is
the strategy to be: best technical or lowest cost (usually it is both), and
most frequently, the strategy must be ˜˜best value to the customer.™™
Can we create a winning strategy using our technical and programmatic
expertise that other competitors do not have? Do we have leverage
through a unique alliance or team? This is serious business. This is the
point where a program is won or lost because the proposal will follow
the strategy set here. If you™ve got it all together, this is the point to
create the Executive Summary for your proposal. A summary before
the document is written? The short answer is yes! The tactics of the
proposal must follow some direction. That direction is set in the Execu-
tive Summary. If you can™t de¬ne the winning strategy at this point, try
again or no-bid. Proposals are expensive endeavors. Guard the secrecy
of this Executive Summary with your life”it™s that important. Limit
the availability to just a few people. Chances are, you learned all this
and then some when attending seminars that supported Proposals
(39).
After the proposal is written, you will update the Executive Sum-
mary, and this time, it will be a true summary. However, the strategy
you devised at the outset will have been worked into a ˜˜Features and
Bene¬ts™™ section, and the rest will be a real summary of the proposal.
˜˜It was the best of times, it was the worst of times . . .™™3 Not only
does this opening establish the literary nature of a proposal, it estab-
lishes the trying nature of proposals as well. Proposals open with ex-
citement, sink to despair, and end in trauma. During my ¬rst proposal,
a friend of mine, Harry Gull, said: ˜˜You never get through writing a
proposal”you just run out of time and print.™™ How right he was. Dur-
ing my career, I have written hundreds of proposals, and it seems, no
matter how well organized the proposal, there™s always just one more
change to be made. You know that the proposal is the lifeblood of the
organization, and if you make just one more change it will be the differ-
ence between winning and not winning. In the proposal cycle, you
never lose, you just don™t win.



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157
Matching the Skill Sets to Projects and Programs


The most dif¬cult part of any proposal is costing. You must start
your costing early and from the top down, or you will end up with such
a mess you™ll never recover. Allocate cost to the various elements and
then start arguing. Believe me, you will argue. Keep some dollars in
your pocket for reserve and allocate them only at the last minute when
you can™t make everything add up. When you get to this point, I suggest
you read paragraph 8.2.4 in my book Blueprint for Project Recovery. It
offers some insight into how to maintain a risk reserve. Start costing as
early as you can and then on a rigorous schedule. You™ll still probably
end up short on time. With the use of computers nowadays, costing
should be a lot easier, but it really isn™t. The emphasis now is in re-
¬nement rather than development.
After the proposal has been submitted, the customer™s team will
evaluate it. There will be questions and answers and maybe even oral
presentations. Your job is to keep up the momentum, keep the people
happy and creative and ready for the next round of questions. They will
likely return to their operating positions at this point, so your job of
keeping them happy will be a tough one.
The customer will go into what seems like hibernation (actually
they are working just as hard as you did on the proposal) and for what
seems like a long time. Other business will occupy the team members
in the meantime. Your job is to pull the required members of the pro-
posal team back together, brief them on the current situation, and re-
spond to current needs. Most likely, you will need the team members
more than once to answer questions that arise during proposal evalua-
tion and then during negotiation. These questions must be answered
immediately.
As stated earlier in this chapter, there is a balancing act between
the marketing representative and the program person. Cost is the issue,
particularly if you are still competing. You™ve got to win, but you™ve got
to run the program too. Good luck! That™s the subject for several more
books.
It is your job to ensure that good minutes are kept of the negotia-
tion so that a ˜˜data trail™™ exists between the proposal and the ¬nal
contract. When negotiations are over, everything should be docu-
mented and made ready for handover.
If there has been execution team representation during the pursuit
and the proposal, handover should be relatively easy. If there is a gap,
it will be dif¬cult. The execution team must know exactly what it™s up
against when running the program. You may be asking yourself right



TLFeBOOK
158 APPLYING YOUR SKILLS TO PROJECTS AND PROGRAMS


now, ˜˜Why doesn™t the execution team just read the contract?™™ Al-
though this sounds easy, it may not be. There are likely nuances that
were uncovered during negotiation that contribute to the changes made
from the proposal to the contract. The execution team needs to know
these nuances. Unfortunately, there may have been off-line agreements
made and not documented. This happens all the time. Remember when
I talked about how the colocated marketer operates? The execution
team needs to know about these agreements.
If handover has been properly conducted, the capture team should
be able to fade away, and the execution team begins its ˜˜ramp-up™™ by
starting the Planning Stage.

Planning Stage
The core team will already be identi¬ed, as will the critical program
managers. The directors will be in place. The remainder of the staff,
however, must be phased in as required. Training will be complex and
ongoing for this program. The kickoff meeting will be formal and last
for several days.
The Program Plan for this program will be signi¬cant. The Program
Plan is developed ¬rst as an executive-level plan, and then a separate
plan for each Subsystem Program Of¬ce (SPO) is developed. The core
team for each subsystem develops an SPO program plan for their re-
spective subsystems. The volumes of the Program Plan however are
ordered by the way the organization is structured”that is, each pro-
gram manager has their own program plan, and each of these plans will
˜˜roll up™™ into the overall program plan. Sort of a giant WBS.
This is an important point. The schedules presented in each of the
program plans must contribute to the overall plan. An enterprise-
oriented scheduling application must be used to accommodate all the
various parts of the overall Master Program Plan. Even though individ-
ual inputs are allowed by the application, all inputs in this case are
made by a central scheduling of¬ce to ensure consistency.
Now it is time to assemble the team. The overall team is de¬ned in
the proposal for the purposes of costing. It is likely that only the critical
positions are named and resumes provided for them. The others appear
simply as proposed levels and numbers. The levels indicate the cost of
each position. It is not unusual to change the team composition after
award as you gain insight into what must be done and reality is upon
you. It has been months and months since the proposal was submitted,



TLFeBOOK
159
Matching the Skill Sets to Projects and Programs


and some of the people have left the company and some have been
consumed by other duties. If this is a cost plus program, you may need
to report the new organization to the customer. The core team and the
management team should remain constant, however, unless something
dramatic happens during negotiation.
The complexity of this task will keep the personnel director and
staff working overtime. Personnel will be taken from other divisions
and from the outside. It is not unusual for a program of this magnitude
to ˜˜draft™™ people from other divisions. Of course, this creates problems
in the other divisions because the new program drafts the best from
the divisions. Sometimes this process involves you negotiating releases
with other vice presidents or general managers in the company. Some-
times this will stall and must be elevated to the next level for resolu-
tion. You must be prepared with the Scarlet O™Hara speech. You know:
˜˜Rhett, if I don™t get the dress, it™s curtains!™™ Only this time it™s ˜˜If we
don™t get so-and-so, the program will fail, and you (the authority) won™t
make your numbers!™™
Training in this program is different from training for smaller pro-
grams and projects. Not just because it is larger, but because programs
of this size develop the leadership for subsequent programs.
For training, ¬rst bring the core team and the staff together. This
includes the directors and all the SPO program managers. Again, I rec-
ommend you use the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) program (see
Chapter 8) as an opener. Follow this up with the training necessary for
the program. This training includes the Mission Statement, the cus-
tomer, the organization, and the requirements.
The several SPOs also have their training that will follow the same
general outline as the staff.
This is the recommended, up-front training package for all the par-
ticipants. Later in the program, you will want to expand the training,
especially for the staff, remembering that these are the people the com-
pany will promote to higher levels in the near future. The Ned Hermann
Brain Mapping Program, Situational Leadership, Targeted Selection, Managing
Winning Proposals, and a host of other training programs are desirable
for selected people on the program.
Each level of kickoff for this program lasts all day. There are three
levels of kickoff”SPO members to SPO leaders, staff to management,
and staff to the customer. Before each of these meetings, have practices
and dry runs. For a program of this size, this is not ˜˜gilding the lily,™™ it
is a necessity. The program is long and complex, and everyone must



TLFeBOOK
160 APPLYING YOUR SKILLS TO PROJECTS AND PROGRAMS


know their individual roles and the objectives of the team. Remember,
the kickoff covers the Execution Stage and Closure. Everyone must
agree on what constitutes closure, or you may as well not start.
The kickoff meeting should include a requirement for each pre-
senter. The core team should indicate the contents of the presentation,
the contributors (responsibilities), and the target audience for each
presenter.

Execution Stage
The Execution Stage for a large-scale program is essentially the same
as for a program, but the large-scale program is considerably larger and
more complex. This is a good time to ¬ne-tune your program plan.
The design period follows the same outline as did the program be-
fore. Because this is most likely a federal government contract, you will
be confronted with a myriad of Mil Standards, Mil Speci¬cations, and
other required and speci¬c documents, processes, and procedures.
Each design review is conducted in strict accordance with MIL-STD-
1521.4 The chief engineer manages the reviews, but you must attend
them all and be aware of all the details. Customer sign-off at all levels
is essential for a program of this size.
The procurement period follows the same outline as the program
did.
Each subsystem is developed on its own schedule. Indeed, some of
the simpler subsystems can be completed far ahead of the others. It™s
your decision whether to proceed with all subsystems at once and put
them into storage until the Final Integration Test (FIT) or to delay the
start of each so that they all ¬nish at the same time. Of course, there
are advantages and disadvantages to each approach”that™s why you get
the big bucks!
Each subsystem program manager here is involved in a constant
state of ˜˜work arounds.™™ Whatever plan was established yesterday
needs to be modi¬ed today because something ˜˜doesn™t ¬t right.™™ This
period will try your SPO PM™s problem-solving skills.
You and your chief engineer must stay on top of all these subsystem
issues and project any impacts on FIT.
The testing period follows the same outline as all the previous proj-
ects and programs. It is very complex and very demanding.

Closure Stage
Other than the normal elements of closure, the closure of a program of
this magnitude may well be different. If you have been able to create



TLFeBOOK
161
Matching the Skill Sets to Projects and Programs


other programs as spin-offs, you will handle the people in one way. If
not, you must handle them as if this is a normal, phased-down pro-
gram. At this point, I hope you have learned all there is to learn about
project and program management. From here you will either go on to
another large-scale program or take over an operation or a division.
Whatever it is, you need to get ready for the next one.

Notes
1. Benjamin Franklin, Poor Richard™s Almanack (Mount Vernon, N.Y.: Pauper
Press, 1983): 55.
2. A line from the Jabberwocky Bird”a mythical bird that ¬‚ew backward just
to see where he had been. Introduced in a song by Phil Harris on the
˜˜Phyllis™ Boyfriend™™ show, October 17, 1948.
3. Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities, opening line of Book 1, Chapter 1.
4. MIL-STD-1521 is just one of many hundreds of U.S. federal government
standards that provide the strict guidelines for controlling activities on
federal government contracts. MIL-STD-1521 controls design reviews.




TLFeBOOK
CHAPTER 10




Are You Ready for the
Next One?
Occasionally, you will be asked or directed to go to the next project or
program before ¬nishing the one you are currently working on. Don™t
lose the opportunity, but ¬rst, audit the program you are leaving and
have someone of authority agree with the audit. If your replacement
does not conduct the program as well as you did, you have a recognized
condition of the program as you left it. It can save your reputation or
your job. Conversely, if you are assigned to an ongoing project or pro-
gram, it is a good idea to audit that project or program as soon as you
arrive. Here we have the opposite case in terms of performance but the
same case in terms of establishing a baseline. In the case of the ongoing
project, it will be dif¬cult to conduct the audit, but you should insist
that it be performed anyway.
Legally, corporations are perpetual. And so it is with project and
program managers. Each must be preparing for the next project or pro-
gram and looking for the next promotion. In the case of a corporation,
it will be preparing itself through proposals. In the case of a project
manager, he will be preparing himself through knowledge, experience,
and performance. Indeed, these factors will determine what your next
project will be.

What Will the Next One Be?
The next project or program you will lead depends entirely on where
you are now. Let™s assume you™re leading a small project. Look at Figure
10-1. It pulls together the path of progress through the project levels
as a graphical representation of what we have talked about throughout
the book. The boxes with the heavy lines indicate project or program
162

TLFeBOOK
163
Are You Ready for the Next One?


Figure 10-1. What is your next move?

Basic Certificate
See Figure 7-1
Skills


.5-1


Small
Project




Advanced Certification
Skills See Figure 7-2

1-3 1-3


Intermediate Large
Project Project




Expert
Skills


3-5



Program




Specialists
Skills


5-10 5-10


International
Specialized
P/P
P/P



Principal
Skills


>10



Large Scale
P/P




TLFeBOOK
164 APPLYING YOUR SKILLS TO PROJECTS AND PROGRAMS


levels. The boxes with the normal lines indicate the skill levels. In be-
tween the boxes are circles containing numbers. These circles portray
the experience, in years, required to move from one project or program
level to another.
As you can see, an appropriate certi¬cate can replace the Basic Skill
Set requirements so long as the seminar offerings compare, at least,
requirement to requirement.
Additionally, an appropriate certi¬cation can replace the Advanced
Skill Set requirements so long as the certi¬cation courses compare, at
least, requirement to requirement, and the candidate has the appro-
priate experience.

How Will You Get There?
Let™s say you have entered the world of project management and have
collected the skills necessary to lead a small project. In order to move
up to an intermediate or large project, you must collect all the advanced
skills necessary and have one to three years™ experience at that level.
You can continue your progress through the project management
ranks by gaining expert skills and three to ¬ve years™ experience. Of
course, a project or program must be available for you to lead when you
are available. It is not unusual for a company to use a quali¬ed project
manager to lead or participate in a new business proposal whenever
there is no immediate project to lead. This, of course, is a matter of
chance and company practice. The bottom line is that you will either
¬nd project activity in your own company or move to another company.
Follow the same rationale to get you where you want to be. In fact,
this scene will play over and over again throughout your project man-
agement career.
Depending on your education and training, you may have entered
the ˜˜stream™™ somewhere other than at the small project level. In this
case, only the entry point will be different. The rationale is the same
from that point on.




TLFeBOOK
PA R T

V

MAKING YOUR
CAREER MOVES




There are some jobs where you spend your entire career in the same
position. For the most part, these positions are in mining and manufac-
turing. In most other industries, people move about from position to
position and from company to company. This is certainly true in project
management. The very nature of project management is that you must
move from project to project because projects have a speci¬c beginning
and ending, they are ¬nite.
The question in project management is not whether will you move,
but how you will move. There are essentially four conditions to move
through in the world of project management.

1. Move from project to project in the same company at the same
level.
2. Move from project to project in the same company at different
(higher) levels.
3. Move from project to project and from company to company at
the same level.
165

TLFeBOOK
166 MAKING YOUR CAREER MOVES


4. Move from project to project and from company to company at
different levels.

It is reasonable and normal to spend some amount of time in condi-
tion 1 above, but you want to move as quickly as you can from condi-
tion 1 to 2 or 4. You may have to move through condition 3 to get to
condition 4.
First, you must look at your company™s usual inventory of projects.
Are they all at the same level or do the levels change? If they are all at
the same level, that pretty much seals it. For all practical purposes, you
will be working at that level at that company for the rest of your career.
You will have traded your hardhat for a tie, but you are not much better
off than the mine worker. If the projects change in size and nature, it™s
a different story. In this case, you must vie for a better position.
We spent much of the ¬rst four parts of this book suggesting that
you improve yourself so that you could improve your position in project
management and in the company. If someone doesn™t move you, you
need to move yourself. You do this by vying for higher positions in the
company or by changing companies.
If other, higher positions are available in your company and you
have increased your knowledge and performed well, you should be in
position to be selected to lead other, higher projects. If you are not
selected to lead other, higher projects, you need to know why. The
amount of time you spend changing projects at the same level depends
on three things. First, what is the duration of the project type you are
working on? Some projects last for only a few months, while others last
for several years. Second, what ˜˜mix™™ of project types does your com-
pany usually have”that is, how many short-duration projects does it
have compared to how many long-duration projects? Third, how does
your company reward the performance of project managers?
If other higher positions are not available and you have increased
your knowledge and performed well, you need to seriously consider
changing companies or at least divisions within your present company
if jobs are available there. In any case, you need to make a move. The
question is: Where and how do I move? Read on.




TLFeBOOK
CHAPTER 11




Meeting Market Needs
Unfortunately we cannot individually create a market need for a posi-
tion we would like to have. Instead, we must follow what the markets
have to offer. We start the process by assessing the market. What are
companies and other organizations looking for to ¬ll their project man-
agement needs? We need to know if we are looking in the right places.
What direction is the market taking? Who are the companies involved?
What are the opportunities we might see in the market? What are the
speci¬c jobs being offered? Having digested all this, we need to address
the market. That means we need to address the market with what it
wants and needs. In other words, how we individually ¬t the needs of
the market. We can set some strategies for ourselves in the process too.
We can determine if we want to make the offered position a stopover
or a destination, and most certainly we can take advantage of the differ-
ent vista the new position provides.
Let™s press on and capture that new job we want . . .

Assessing the Market
In part of the research I did for this book, I evaluated 182 current job
postings for project managers. The results of the data showed that the
most important requirement for all the project management jobs is a
bachelor™s degree. In some cases, the degree requirement was speci¬c
(engineering, ¬nance, and so on). In other cases, it was general. At ¬rst
I created a table to present the data, but the problem was that it was
necessary to average the data. Why is this important? Because when
you average data, you lose the individual characteristics of the elements
of data. For instance, if a speci¬c job posting is for a junior project
manager, most likely the bachelor™s degree and one to four years™ expe-
rience will be most important. Conversely, if the job posting is for a
167

TLFeBOOK
168 MAKING YOUR CAREER MOVES


senior-level program manager, the master™s degree and ten to twenty
years™ experience will be most important. When the data is averaged,
all this is lost. So, I decided I couldn™t average the data. However, what
came through loud and clear in all the postings was the requirement
for a bachelor™s degree. Experience was very important, but as you
might expect, it was directly proportional to the expected compensa-
tion level of the job. In other words, the lower-level jobs required less
experience than the higher-level jobs. Usually, the job experience re-
quirement cut off at twenty years. Certi¬cation, per se, was rarely men-
tioned. Usually, if certi¬cation was required, the position was to be
resold”that is, it was a headhunter posting the advertisement for the
position, not the company. Performance was to be evaluated by the
contents of the resume.

Market Direction
The direction of the project management market appears to follow gen-
eral market trends with some exceptions. First, because project man-
agement is a new concept, there has been an avalanche of advertising
for project managers in the last few years. In part, this advertisement is
not so much the creation of new jobs as it is the reclassi¬cation of jobs
to require the project management process be used in the performance
of tasks that have been around for a long time. Second, because the
project management process is so powerful, new jobs have been created
requiring the use of the project management process. What all this
means, though, is that you must have project management training in
order to qualify for these jobs”existing or newly created.
Clearly, if the direction of the market is such that job descriptions
now require project management abilities, you must have project man-
agement abilities. That™s the basic point of this book.

The Companies Involved
The number and types of companies that advertise for project managers
have increased dramatically in the last few years. This increase, how-
ever, follows the same rationale as addressed in direction, above.
Once this trend started, we began to see companies and industries
advertising for project managers that have never advertised for project
managers before. Examples are ¬nance and banking, and believe it or
not, construction. Before a few years ago, construction advertised for
their traditional positions such as foreman and superintendent. Now,



TLFeBOOK
169
Meeting Market Needs


many companies advertise these positions as construction project man-
agers. Depending on your view, you could say that this is subterfuge or
that they should have been doing this all the time.

The Opportunities
The opportunities for project management positions appear both inter-
nally, meaning inside your current company (if your company does
business using projects), and externally, meaning outside your current
company. The process you use to achieve these positions is essentially
the same.
Now, let me throw something at you. Outsourcing has had a severe
impact on America™s workforce. Jobs, at all levels, are being sent over-
seas. Manufacturing jobs, software coding jobs, analyst jobs, white-
collar jobs of all types. White-collar jobs, EXCEPT project management
jobs. Why is that? Because the project management process provides
leverage in getting the job done, and that™s what™s needed here.
What does this mean to you? It means you need to get your start
in project management before your competition does. Secure your posi-
tion by becoming quali¬ed in project management.

Job Descriptions
In Chapter 7, I talked about the value of certi¬cation. Here is where
you need to make an individual assessment based on the market you
are working in. Let™s look at the issue from two positions:
Position 1. Look at a number of job descriptions (meaning as many
as you can ¬nd) for positions you would like to have. Has the market
segment you are looking into started requiring certi¬cations? How
many of them are requiring certi¬cations? If the number is 10 percent
or more that are requiring certi¬cations, perhaps this is a portent of
things to come. You need to think about a year or two ahead. That™s
the length of time it will take you to become certi¬ed. Can you visualize
how many companies in your area of interest will be requiring certi¬-
cations at that time?
If your market segment approaches that 10 percent threshold at the
present time, you need to seriously think about getting a certi¬cation.
Position 2. Remember when I discussed the two project managers
with exactly the same quali¬cations, except that one has a certi¬cation
and the other does not? Remember the obvious conclusion we came
to? Apply that logic and increase your competitive position by getting



TLFeBOOK
170 MAKING YOUR CAREER MOVES


a certi¬cation. Which certi¬cation you choose is a matter of the de-
mands of the market you are working in.

Addressing the Market
Where to go from here is a question you must ask yourself. In previous
chapters, I provided some information that hopefully has stimulated
your imagination, and you now have a better idea of where you want to
go or what you want to do in the ¬eld of project management. At this
point, consider three options: First, evaluate this position in light of
your overall strategy, then ask yourself: Is this a stopover or a destina-
tion? Second, evaluate the visibility that this position affords you with
regard to your overall strategy, then ask yourself: Do I have a different
view from here? Finally, if you have decided that your present position
is not your ¬nal destination and your visibility tells you there are bigger
and better things out there, then ask yourself: Where do I look?

Is This a Stopover or a Destination?
Maybe you are now in a position to determine whether the next posi-
tion you take will be a stopover or a destination. In either case, it is
your choice. Hopefully you will make the choice before you take the
next position, but that™s not entirely necessary. On the one hand, what
started out as a stopover could end up being a destination. If you are
satis¬ed with the position you are going into, that™s wonderful. On the
other hand, if a position starts out as a destination and then you ¬nd
other opportunities available, that™s terri¬c.
All this may sound kind of wishy-washy, but it™s really not. At the
outset, you should develop a strategy built on the view you now have.
At this point you say: ˜˜I want to be a project vice president, and any
job is just a stopover on my way to getting there.™™ At the next vantage
point you have a different view. You see that staying close to your tech-
nical roots is more promising in the long run. If that™s the case, shift
your strategy a little and take a slightly different vector. When you get
to the next vantage point, do the same thing. The point is this, have a
good idea of what you want to do and maintain the general strategy.
Don™t make sharp right or left turns on a whim. Usually, these look
real good, but don™t pan out too well. Maintain the general course, but
don™t be afraid to take advantage of a new offering.

Do You Have a Different View from Here?
Each position you get will likely give you a different view. You are ex-
posed to different people who have different views. These people may



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171
Meeting Market Needs


have other contacts and friends in places and positions you had not
thought of before. Every day, indeed every cocktail party, every golf
match, or every little league game, can offer new opportunities. Just
keep your career and your career strategy in mind at all times and keep
your eyes and your mind open.

Where Do You Look?
Before we tackle the ˜˜where™™ question, let™s tackle the ˜˜how™™ question.
The answer to ˜˜how™™ is networking. Networking takes two forms:
Face-to-face networking and remote networking.
Face-to-face networking is the kind of networking you can accom-
plish by going to the social activities that your company offers and in-
terfacing with section heads, managers, and directors of other parts of
the company that might be interested in what you have to offer. The
point is to use this forum to break the ice and set up a follow-on meet-
ing so you can get down to business. I don™t suggest you bring your
resume with you to the party, but cards are OK.
Remote networking is accomplished by letter, fax, e-mail, and tele-
phone with companies and people of common interest. You can start
remote networking by joining a technical organization, an administra-
tive organization, a management organization, or a project manage-
ment organization. Almost all of these organizations have bulletin
boards, potential employers lists, and numerous other kinds of contacts
to get you started. Because the lists are so dynamic, many organizations
have Web sites where these lists are posted. The thing you have in
common with these kinds of interchanges is that you both have a com-
mon interest in the organization that brought you together in the ¬rst
place. You will need to provide your credentials, your resume, and the
other standard documents you usually provide, but you should be able
to break the ice with your contacts by referring to the organization that
provided the contact in the ¬rst place.
Now that we understand the ˜˜how,™™ let™s look at the ˜˜where.™™

Project Management Organizations. You are looking at an organization to
provide you with educational opportunities, training opportunities,
book lists, listings of gatherings (seminars and such), networking op-
portunities, and most importantly, a job listing board where you can
post your resume or look at the listings for opportunities.
Figure 2-2 lists organizational contacts no matter what continent



TLFeBOOK
172 MAKING YOUR CAREER MOVES


you are standing on. Take the opportunity to contact the organization
that interests you most and see what they have to offer. I believe this
is good advice if you are a ˜˜newbie™™ or a ˜˜grizzly.™™ If you are a newbie,
the organization can provide you with mounds of information to help
you in many ways. If you are a grizzly, take a moment to stick your head
above the trenches and see what is happening in the outside world. I
guarantee you will be amazed. In either case, you will have the opportu-
nities to see jobs posted or to post your resume.
Most organizations have Special Interest Groups (they may call
them something else that is similar) that allow you to channel your
interests into a speci¬c discipline, industry, or area. The main body
provides the standards and the body of knowledge for general project
management positions, but the Special Interest Group (SIG) provides
a speci¬c interest ¬‚air. Most of these organizations have local chapters.
You may need to drive a few miles every few months to reach the meet-
ing place, but believe me, it™s worth the effort. These organizations
usually have a guest speaker who presents a topic of interest during the
meeting. Usually, there is a ˜˜networking™™ period prior to the meeting,
so you can move around and meet others. My experience with these
local chapters has been excellent. The groups are populated by project
managers and potential project managers from all the local industries.
They usually run the gamut in age and the industry in which they are
employed. The local dues are usually low, and the return on investment
in time and money are more than worth it.

Civic Organizations. Next, you can join organizations that stimulate in-
terchange between members. The Chamber of Commerce is a good
place to look for organizations of this type. Most of these organizations
will have a social hour or period for interfacing that will be of immense
value to you. Once again, this is an initial contact situation. Business
cards or personal cards are a good way to suggest maintaining contact.
Don™t give out a card to everyone you see, but have some in your pocket
just in case. Then, just handle the situation as if it™s no big deal.

Job Fairs. In addition to these types of face-to-face interchanges, there
are job fairs and expos. Even though job fairs and expos offer face-to-
face contact, they are a little different. The usual setup for these events
is to have the company representatives at tables around the room. The
representatives will be standing at some kind of ˜˜parade rest™™ behind
their table wearing a big smile. There must be only one training school



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173
Meeting Market Needs


in the world for these folks, because this is the way it always happens.
You circulate until something or someone catches your eye, then you
swoop (no, you™d better be cool and saunter) over to that table. After
about ¬ve seconds of pleasantries, you get down to business. The pur-
pose of this interchange is simple”what can you offer me, and what
can I offer you? Does this sound like a marriage made in heaven? Oh
well, probably not, but it may be a good contact. Answer the represen-
tative™s questions and ask your own. Be sure to have a good supply of
up-to-date resumes and personal or business cards. If you don™t know
how to write a resume, get help. Read a book or contact a professional
service. There™s a myriad of books and hundreds if not thousands of
resume services to help you, all for a fee, of course. Why? Because just
after you turn and leave the smiling representative at the table, your
resume goes into a pile, maybe with a few notes but nevertheless into
a pile. The next time it is read, you won™t be there to defend it, and it
may end up in the trash. At this point, the face-to-face networking has
turned into remote networking.

Classi¬ed Ads. The most dif¬cult way to get a job is through ˜˜cold call-
ing.™™ Sometimes this is the only way open to you, but it™s tough. By
cold calling, I mean looking in the newspaper or the like and trying to
respond to a job posting. They don™t know you from Adam™s house cat,
and you are just another piece of paper. Unless you have some unique
quali¬cation they happen to be looking for at that moment in time, you
will spend a lot of unproductive, frustrating time pursuing this avenue.
The only time this method is really useful is when it is a seller™s market
and employers are hiring everyone they can get.
So, choose your method. I think the priority of choice should be
clear from the foregoing. Always have an updated resume available, and
always carry business or personal cards, along with a smile!




TLFeBOOK
CHAPTER 12




Getting Settled
Assume you made the decision to change, meaning you were hired into
a new company or were transferred from one group to another within
the company you are in. For whatever reason, your situation today is
not what it was yesterday. This means you have to make a change in
yourself. You must be in charge and must show your leadership style
from the very outset.
To start, get a sense of the big picture, the lay of the land. First,
you should fully understand the organization”this means the company
organization and the project organization. The best way I know to get
an overview of the formal organization is to ask for an organization
chart. Then, you need to understand your bosses. Do your homework
and ¬nd out just what kind of people they are. What are their likes and
dislikes? What are their other personal traits? Only when you know all
these things can you approach your boss with an issue and get some-
thing done. Next comes the power structure. Who drives the organiza-
tion? Sometimes the answer to this question is surprising. Next make
friends and alliances”you need them in order to get your job done.
Finally, you are ready to take over the project you will lead. How do
you do that to ensure you are leading the project to success from the
very ¬rst moment? This chapter tells you how and makes some real
suggestions to get the job done.

Getting the Lay of the Land
Getting the lay of the land means understanding the company, the unit,
the products, the project, and the people. What about the attitude of
the people in the company? Are they all working together or are there
self-serving cliques? Were you immediately treated as one of the family
or have you had to earn your way? Will you be accepted or will you
forever be the guy from somewhere else? Every company is different,
174

TLFeBOOK
175
Getting Settled


and each has its own character and its own idiosyncrasies. You must
understand the character or you will forever play ˜˜What happened?™™ I
remember when I moved from New Hampshire to Houston, I immedi-
ately became one of the family. This mainly had to do with my technical
expertise, but it also had to do with the people. The people were, by
nature, open and friendly, but the most important factor was that the
program was brand-new, and everybody had come from somewhere
else. There was no organizational inertia to overcome. However, when
I moved from Houston to Philadelphia, it was another story. Philadel-
phia was the headquarters for the company I worked for, and most of
the people there had always been there. ˜˜Always™™ is not an exaggera-
tion. Some had been there for thirty-¬ve years and more. I was treated
as an outsider, but then again, so was everyone else who had moved in
from the ¬eld. Over time I made peace with the technical and manage-
ment staff, but I was never fully accepted by most of the clerical staff.
They were as polite as they had to be, but there was always an under-
tone of having the lowest priority for my clerical work. You can ¬ght
this kind of situation if you want to, but have you ever heard the expres-
sion ˜˜pushing a wet rope uphill?™™ That™s about the size of it. If you
can™t convert the entire workforce, get enough people on your side to
get the work done. Understand who has the ability to expedite work,
and, conversely, who can hold it up. Griping about the situation won™t
help. Frequently, a lunch or two with the right people will help. It is
amazing how people take on a different mantle when they are in a
group of ˜˜their own™™ but become affable when you meet with them on
an individual basis. If you handle these one-on-one situations diplo-
matically, these folks will frequently take your message back to ˜˜their
own,™™ and you will become more and more accepted.
These are the kinds of things you may be exposed to whenever you
move to a new location. I can only suggest that you start with diplomacy.
It™s easiest to start as a diplomat and then lapse into your street-¬ghting
mode if necessary. But, once you expose your street-¬ghting side, that™s
where you™ll stay. The higher the level you are hired or transferred to in
an organization, the fewer of these kinds of problems you can expect to
have. But, even then, there™s no guarantee. Some of it relates to the
environment, and some of it relates to you. In addition to learning about
the general organization, do your homework, and discover everything
you can about your new bosses, not to be nosy, but to be more effective.
If you take a problem to your boss, how should you present it? Should
you ever take a problem to your boss? As silly as this may sound, you



TLFeBOOK
176 MAKING YOUR CAREER MOVES


may get a response you didn™t expect. Perhaps the response is ˜˜Don™t
bring me problems, bring me results.™™ This may be because your boss
wants to train you to solve your own problems; it may be because he or
she is too lazy to be bothered. You need to know. Perhaps the response
is something you did not expect”a total whirlwind. You™ve turned the
machine on, and now you can™t turn it off. It™s out of control”most
certainly it™s out of your control. Don™t get caught in this kind of situa-
tion. Your boss may hand you a solution you can™t live with! Further-
more, your boss will then expect you to implement his or her solution,
and be in your stuff at every turn until you do. It is best to go in with
your own solution and give your boss the opportunity to say: ˜˜Yes.™™
That™s the easiest solution, and the one they normally take.
Before you make your next move, get a copy of Games People Play,1
and understand that different people have different games they play. To
understand that you are in the middle of a game”and that it has a
name”is halfway to ¬xing the problem.

The Organization
What is the company organization, and what is its character? What is the
source of project personnel? Will your people be provided through a ma-
trix organization, or is your project ˜˜projectized?™™ To whom do you report
functionally? Is there a ˜˜dotted line™™ reporting scheme? Is there a central-
ized Project Management Of¬ce (PMO), or are the projects on their own?
Phew! That™s a bunch of questions, and the answer to each is im-
portant. Let™s take a look at each one.
What is the company organization and character? Is the company
a Research and Development (R&D) organization? Is the company a
manufacturing organization? Is the company a services organization?
Is the company a hardware-oriented organization? Is the company a
software organization? I don™t mean to answer a question with other
questions, but these distinctions are important. Each organization type
has its own character, and you must understand what that character is.
If all your experience has been in manufacturing and you are going
into an R&D organization, you will ¬nd the character of the two quite
different. I™ve only presented two company types for purposes of expla-
nation. There are, of course, many other types, and you need to be
aware of what you are getting into. Sometimes, the purpose of the orga-
nization is not consistent with the usual character of the organization
type. For instance, early in my career, I hired into an R&D organization.
It seemed reasonable to expect an R&D atmosphere, right? Well, it may

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177
Getting Settled


have been reasonable to expect that atmosphere, but that™s not what
it was. This organization was a spin-off of an old-time manufacturing
organization, and they carried their manufacturing rules and policies
with them when they founded this new R&D arm. There was dif¬culty
in the organization from day one, and it continued for as long as I was
there. It™s one of the main reasons I left. Some time later, the organiza-
tion changed, but only after there was a change in upper management
resulting in a change in management philosophy. Look at the organiza-
tion you are going into and understand its expectations. For instance,
if your new organization is an old-line manufacturing organization, ex-
pect the procedures to be solid. You will need to conform to the mold.
The emphasis is on production, even for the projects. If your new orga-
nization is a new software house, expect a lot of serendipity and few
procedures. The emphasis will be on creativity. Over time, this attitude
will change . . . if the company survives.
How does your new organization provide the personnel to the proj-
ects? Will your project be a matrix, or is it ˜˜projectized?™™ To recap the
operating characteristics of a matrix organization, let me say that a
project operating under the matrix concept gets its personnel from
functional organizations. These personnel get their raises from their
functional managers and thus owe their allegiance to the functional
manager. What does this mean to you? Simply stated, you are required
to provide more leadership and fewer orders to get the project person-
nel to do what you need them to do. Some ˜˜enlightened™™ organizations
(where the higher management has been a project manager) institute a
process that allows the project manager to have a heavy input to the
individual™s performance evaluations. This action gives the project
manager a lot more leverage in the individual™s performance appraisal,
meaning his raises!
On the other hand, if your project is projectized, you have consider-
ably direct control because you are the one who passes out the raises
and promotions. You can expect responsiveness to be a lot more crisp.
To whom do you report functionally? This means purely and sim-
ply, who signs your paycheck, your promotions, and your raises? Is
there a ˜˜dotted line™™ reporting relationship? A dotted line simply
means this is the of¬ce that coordinates and may temporarily control
your operating activities. Is there a straight line and a dotted line to
your function? If this is the case, you report functionally to one of¬ce
and are technically directed by another of¬ce. This is usual for quality
assurance people and is used with project managers whenever the cen-
tralized PMO staff concept is used (see below).
Is the Project Management Of¬ce (PMO) a LINE function or a

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178 MAKING YOUR CAREER MOVES


STAFF function? The PMO usually has one of two functions. If it is a
LINE organization, it is the organization element from which all project
management activities emanate. In this case, the PMO is the directing
agency for all project activities in the company. It is the creator of all
project management policies, plans, processes, and procedures. It is the
˜˜home™™ or functional organization of all project managers. It makes
assignments and controls the activities of project managers to each
project. The line PMO controls the raises of the project managers.
Alternatively, it can be a STAFF organization from which project man-
agement activities are coordinated. In this case, it is the creator or coordi-
nator of project management policies, plans, processes, and procedures.
It ˜˜logs™™ projects and may receive reports from ongoing projects. In some
cases, the PMO will simply collect and post project performance data. But,
the project managers do not report functionally to this PMO; instead, they
are technically responsible to the PMO for employing the policies, plans,
and procedures demanded by the PMO but functionally responsible to
their line functional manager or director. The functional manager, in this
case, controls the project manager raises.
What does all this mean to you? It means you need to understand
the position and authority from which you operate whenever you go
into a new organization. You should know who signs your paycheck
and who signs the paychecks of the people on your team. You should
know the method of control you have over the personnel on your proj-
ect. You must know to whom you report and in what capacity. By know-
ing all these things, your assimilation into the new organization will be
a lot easier.

The Power Structure
There are frequently two elements of the power structure in any organi-
zation. These elements are the organizational structure, re¬‚ected by
the organization chart hanging on the wall and the infrastructure that
is never written down.
Ostensibly, the organization chart re¬‚ects the power structure of
the organization it represents. The closer one is to the top, the more
power he or she has. Power, usually meaning the ability to give orders,
is directed downward. However, in many organizations, the power
structure is not the same as the organizational structure. Indeed, it is
sometimes amazing to see who in the organization has the true control
of what goes on.
The infrastructure is a loosely gathered network of people involved

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179
Getting Settled


in information and activity ¬‚ow. It is always interesting to ¬nd who the
king or queen of this network is. Frequently, the person resides among
the secretaries and the clerks. But be careful. If you listen to this net-
work, you must also have a ˜˜rumor ¬lter.™™ You must be able to ¬lter
out what is rumor and what is fact. Over time, you will be able to
distinguish between those who think they know what™s going on and
those who really do.
All these things create the organizational dynamic, and you must
learn what makes the dynamic move and get things done. If you don™t
understand the dynamic, you will be treading water while others are
succeeding. Every good project manager keeps his or her ¬nger on the
pulse of both the organizational structure and the infrastructure.
These things are very subtle. As I mentioned in the story about going
to headquarters earlier in this chapter, the power structure can be among
the clerical staff. Do they give the orders? No, but they do control work
¬‚ow and who gets what and when. You are either in or out. Sometimes
you may be tolerated. Can you do anything about it? Let me tell you a
story that circulated about Lyndon Johnson when he became president
of the United States. On his way up, some functionary in the Interior
Department made a change to the application of policy that radically
affected his ranch in Texas. Johnson was furious. Some months after he
became president, one of his friends asked: ˜˜Did you ¬re that guy?™™
Johnson answered, ˜˜Fire him? I couldn™t even ¬nd the SOB.™™ That™s the
way a lot of these things are”very subtle.
In addition to the organizational dynamic, you must also under-
stand the organizational culture. In a new organization, the culture will
re¬‚ect the desires of the leader. In an old-line organization, the culture
will re¬‚ect a conglomerate of the desires of all the past leaders of the
organization and, to some extent, the people of the organization.
Even the culture of an old-line organization can be changed by a
dynamic leader, at least temporarily. When a new general manager,
CEO, or other ˜˜top dog™™ comes into an organization, it is normal for
that person to demand the organization follow his or her dictates. De-
pending on the leadership and time of tenure, the culture of an organi-
zation may be changed. On the other hand, the inherent strength of the
culture may render the new ˜˜leader™™ ineffective or it may return to its
roots as soon as this person goes away.
What does all this mean to you? Simply that you must keep your
eyes and ears open when going into a new organization. You can read
and understand the organizational policies and procedures, but you
must discover the organization™s dynamic and its culture. If you don™t,
you are in for a lot of frustration.

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180 MAKING YOUR CAREER MOVES


Making Friends and Alliances
If you are hired for or assigned to an ongoing project, the best advice I
can offer is to ¬rst conduct an audit of the project. The audit should at
least cover scope, budget, schedule, and customer opinion. Determine
if there are any speci¬c issues plaguing the project and who or what
has been involved with these issues. Document your ¬ndings. The
thing you want to do is to establish a starting point from which you are
considered responsible. Whether or not you present these ¬ndings to
your management is a political choice. You must make that judgment.
When you move into a new position, you need to do two things:
listen and exhibit con¬dence. By listening, I mean just that. Talk to
those who have been with the project for a while and understand the
dynamic of the project and its strengths and weaknesses. You are likely
to get some con¬‚icting views, so be careful in sorting out the data. By
con¬dence, I don™t mean cockiness, I mean con¬dence. You get con¬-
dence by knowledge and performance. You must understand what your
new position is all about and then apply your past knowledge and expe-
rience to that situation. Once you have a good feel for that, you should
look for alliances to establish. Hopefully, you have been there for a few
days and have had your eyes open to see who knows what and who
claims they do. They most certainly fall into two different piles, and
you must be able to separate them. Your purpose in making friends and
alliances is to get the job done. If you are at a high enough level, you
may bring some staff with you. However, unless you are at the director
level or above, you are probably on your own. Remember, whenever
you select your friends and alliances to be a part of your team or to
support your team, you are not selecting someone to drink beer with.
You are selecting people that will make or break your project and your
career by their performance. Select them carefully.
Before you start to select your people and make allies, keep your
eyes open for high performers to create a core team. Once you have
con¬dence in a core team and they in you, start selecting the next levels
of people for your team. Consider group interviewing using the Tar-
geted Selection Process. The core team members will have been there
for a while and will have more insight into who are the performers and
who are not. This strategy just makes your initial job easier. Now you
only need to select a few key people, and they will help you ¬ll out the
team.
It is usually a good idea to work with your core team and to keep



TLFeBOOK
181
Getting Settled


the project team member selection con¬dential until the time is right
to make the information public. At this time, all the kinks regarding
pro¬ciency and availability have been worked out and your selection
process appears to be smooth and complete. For your ¬rst team selec-
tion, it is not unusual to conduct interviews with the potential team
members, much as you would if you were hiring them. All this pre-
sumes you have the latitude to make these selections. Interestingly,
even though you may not have been told you have this latitude, you
can discuss it with your boss. I did this once, and the reason I had not
been given that latitude is that no one thought of it before. When I
discussed it with my new boss, he agreed, and away we went. Of course
you need to read your new boss. It™s a good idea to do your homework
and ¬nd out the nature of your new boss before taking on a position.
He or she can just as easily hand you your head as agree with you.

Taking Over a Project
The ¬rst question to be answered is: Why are you here? Were you hired
to take over and lead this project? Were you moved into a position to
take over this project? No matter which question you answered, the
¬rst thing you need to do is to get your act together. By this I mean,
when you walk into the project, walk in as the project manager, not as
someone looking for friends. In other words, walk in strong, not weak.
Have you gone through all the prior steps of this chapter? Do you
understand the organization? Have you made the alliances you need to
make? If you are coming in from the outside, make these steps care-
fully. Get answers to these questions by talking to your trusted contacts
inside the organization or to the person who hired you. If you are al-
ready in the organization, you may already have a feel for these situa-
tions. The point is, get the questions answered and the issues resolved
at the outset.
First, what are the conditions you are looking into as a project man-
ager? There are usually six combinations:

You are hired for a new project.
You are transferred for a new project.
You are hired for an ongoing project that is running well.
You are transferred to an ongoing project that is running well.
You are hired for an ongoing project that is in trouble.
You are transferred to an ongoing project that is in trouble.

It is important to understand which of these conditions you are facing.
Hopefully, you had an opportunity to ¬nd out the condition of the project



TLFeBOOK
182 MAKING YOUR CAREER MOVES


before taking the job, but this does not always happen. No matter what,
you must still get your arms around the situation before going any further.
In the above list, it is clear that the ¬rst four situations are the best and
the easiest to tackle. The last two situations are more dif¬cult.
You have just been hired or transferred to take over the project. Has
there been a problem? What was the problem? Listen to the people
who are already there. Likely they will have some insightful ideas of
what the problem is all about. Be very careful in your assessment of
each individual input. Audit the inputs and the project performance
¬gures and derive your own solution. What is the solution, and how
will you implement it? Will you make organization changes? Will you
make changes to the order of work? This is the time to broach all these
questions (and any others that may be appropriate) and have your an-
swers ready. Modify the project plan so that your approach is docu-
mented. Then, present the changes to the team. Nothing makes an
organization understand that you are in charge more than making orga-
nizational and procedural changes, but they must be the right ones.
When you are ready, call the team together and make your presen-
tation. It is not necessary to be gruff or unfriendly, but you do need to
let the team members understand you are in charge. You don™t ever
say that, you do that by having your act together. Don™t make your
presentation with a strong voice, make it with a strong plan. Of course
the antithesis of this is to be placed in a position where you have no
time to prepare. Don™t let that happen. Even if it™s just overnight, be
prepared to take over.
The adage ˜˜You never get a second chance to make a ¬rst impres-
sion™™ is absolutely true. Be ready to make that ¬rst impression, and
make it with positive strength.
Up until now, you have been getting ready. You looked at the ori-
gins and development of project management. You looked at your back-
ground and where you wanted to go. You put the two together, and you
were hired or moved into getting a position to lead a project. Now it™s
time to get serious in leading the project or program, but ¬rst you need
to know what each classi¬cation is all about. Are you going to be a one-
person project manager? Are you going to lead a project or a program,
or are you going to lead a large-scale project or program? These are all
valid questions and must be answered.

Note
1. Eric Berne, M.D., Games People Play (New York: Ballantine Books, 1996).



TLFeBOOK
PA R T

VI

KEEP THE MOMENTUM GOING




The traditional way to end a book is to provide a summary of what was
presented and to draw the process to an end. But here success is the
process, and success has no end. It is much more descriptive to think of
success as a continuum, and you are now at a point on that continuum.
Hopefully, you have followed the advice of the book and have raised
your career to new levels, and you are now at an advanced point on the
continuum.
At the outset of the book, I said: ˜˜Project management is a dynamic
discipline, and you really need to stay on top of it. New ideas, new
software, and new approaches are being developed every day.™™ Your
task is to keep the momentum going and to continually move all the
factors now in your possession along the continuum.
This is the place in your career where you can apply your skills not
only to your job, but also to other activities and continue your success.
Your new and well-earned reputation will be the spear point that leads
the way.
You are now at a point where you can give back more than your
labor. You can contribute to the organization of which you are a part.
183

TLFeBOOK
184 KEEP THE MOMENTUM GOING


You can contribute to the discipline in which you operate. You can con-
tribute to the community in which you live.
Continue your success by availing yourself of the latest ideas in
every discipline applicable to project management. History, psychology,
mathematics, and social studies are all applicable. Indeed, what is not
applicable?




TLFeBOOK
CHAPTER 13




Applying Your Skills to
Other Activities
As your project management career progresses, you will become more
and more valuable to yourself and to your company. It is to your advan-
tage and to the advantage of your company to share your skills with
others and to lead other tasks within the company. This readily be-
comes a positively reinforced process. By being more valuable to the
company, you are more valuable to yourself, and so on.
You are in a position now to add breadth and depth to the knowl-
edge base for project management used in your company and perhaps
the organizations to which you belong. Searching for new ideas applica-
ble to project management is high on the list of how you can apply your
knowledge and expertise. The application of your project management
skills may be in mentoring less experienced project managers. Mentor-
ing is also applicable to others who are not project managers, such as
administrative people and technical people. Many projects need admin-
istrators knowledgeable in project management techniques, while
other projects need technical people knowledgeable in project manage-
ment techniques. It will be your pleasure to apprise them of these tech-
niques.
At this level, you can be the architect for developing a project man-
agement of¬ce (PMO) within your company, you can be the catalyst
for new ideas for managing projects using the standards now available
through your participation in project management organizations, and
you can chair project activities within your company.
Now is the time to share what you have gained”to give back some
of what you have learned.
185

TLFeBOOK
186 KEEP THE MOMENTUM GOING


Gathering Leading-Edge Ideas
As you progressed through the skill sets, I™m sure you saw that the
subjects were not only getting deeper, they were getting broader as
well. At this point, breadth and depth are in¬nite.
There are many experts in project management who are advancing
the ¬eld. But there are also experts in other ¬elds, such as mathematics,
psychology, and sociology, who have ideas that are applicable to our
¬eld. There are good ideas in places we never dreamed that could con-
tribute to our discipline. Now, you have the visibility that can make far-
reaching contributions to project management in your company and
perhaps in other places as well.
At this point, it is imperative that you keep up with what™s going
on around you. Your attention should be drawn to reading such books
as Rethinking the Future by Rowan Gibson, Alvin Tof¬‚er, and Heidi Tof-
¬‚er and The Strategy-Focused Organization by Robert S. Kaplan and David
P. Norton. You should attend such seminars as Developing and Executing
a Customer-Centric Strategy and question the application of Knowledge
Management to what™s going on in your organization. By all means
these are not the only areas you should investigate; these are presented
here just to give some idea of the kinds of directions your interests may
take at this point.
At the outset of this book and many times later, I said that project
management is an evolving discipline. It is not today what it was yester-
day, and it will not be tomorrow what it is today. The evolution comes
from leading-edge ideas. At ¬rst, these ideas are ˜˜soft™™; that is, they
are conceptual. As they grow and evolve, however, they become more
˜˜¬rm.™™

Mentoring and Training
To be called upon, either by management or by another project man-
ager, to be a mentor means that you are considered expert enough to
train others. It means that your abilities are well-respected and valu-
able.
Mentoring, believe it or not, is a two-way street”that is, you get as
much from mentoring as your students do. You get to formalize and
solidify your knowledge and experience. You will discover things you
didn™t even know you knew. You will ¬nd things you knew but had
forgotten the details of and needed to research to bring yourself back
up to speed.



TLFeBOOK
187
Applying Your Skills to Other Activities


You will gain knowledge from your students. They will be thinking
from another frame of reference and bringing experiences and knowl-
edge to the meetings that are new to you. Likely they will be younger
than you. By being younger, they will have a different view of things. If
you listen, as well as talk, you will learn something.

Policies, Processes, Plans, and Procedures
Now it is your turn to change and update the policies, processes, plans,
and procedures you™ve been griping about for the last number of years.
Two things will come to the fore here. First, you will probably ¬nd that
many of the policies, processes, and so on were not so bad after all,
now that you understand them from a senior management viewpoint.
Second, you will have an opportunity to ¬ne-tune them with the knowl-
edge and the experience base you have created for yourself over the last
few years.

A Project Management Of¬ce?
Does your organization have a project management of¬ce? Does it need

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