PMI Global Insights

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The Project Management Institute's annual events attract some of the most renowned and esteemed experts in the industry. In this blog, Global Conference, EMEA Congress and experienced event presenters past, present and future from the entire PMI event family share their knowledge on a wide range of issues important to project managers.

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Cameron McGaughy
Dan Furlong
Danielle Ritter
Marjorie Anderson
David Maynard
Kristin Jones
Fabio Rigamonti
Emily Luijbregts
Priya Patra
Karthik Ramamurthy
Stephanie Jaeger
Moritz Sprenger

Past Contributers:

Deepa Bhide
Nic Jain
Karen Chovan
Jack Duggal
Catalin Dogaru
Kristy Tan Neckowicz
Sandra MacGillivray
Gina Abudi
Sarah Mersereau
Lawrence Cooper
Yves Cavarec
Nadia Vincent
Carlos Javier Pampliega García
Michelle Stronach
Laura Samsó
Marcos Arias
Cheryl Lee
David Davis

Recent Posts

Final Summary of PMI EMEA Congress 2019 – my 3 top Lesson’s Learned

Round up of Videos from PMIEMEA19

Agility, Generativity, Terrific TED, and a Sparkling Shiny Surprise! Terrific Third Day of #PMIEMEA19

Serious Gamification, the power of 3Ps in an Agile world, RPA, and TED Talks at #PMIEMEA19 Day 3

The grand Finale - Day 3 of PMIEMEA19

The Third Day with a Grand Finale

I can't believe the congress is over already. However there is so much we have learned, so much we need to digest.

Today I started my day by attending another session on Virtual Teams. Dr. Mike Oliver brought us the session #603 "Enhancing Virtual Project Leadership Effectiveness". He has worked many years from home and virtual teams have become second nature to him. However globally more and more PMs realize they can work anywhere, anytime. After laying out for us why we are having more and more virtual teams and what the characteristics are of virtual teams are, he helped us think through the challenges of virtual teams. The 3 interactive functions of the Complexity Leadership Theory 

- administrative Leadership

- adaptive Leadership 

- enabling Leadership

need to be balanced and the PM needs to know when to use which and how. 

His practical tips:

1. Communication needs to be much more detailed, to ensure everyone gets the same message. Situations like the one in this video need to be avoided:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kNz82r5nyUw&t=11s

2. If budget allows, it is best to meet at least once physically with the whole team as early as possible during the project.

3. Set very clear rules that touch on meeting etiquette, use of social media etc

4. Build trust and keep affirming it. 

In Session #609 "Governance: A framework for applying Agile Practices within Projects, Programs & Portfolios" Nicholas Clemens showed us that progressive elaboration has been part and parcel of the PMI Standards since the first PMBOK Guide. The use of Planning Packages helps tackle the unknowns. "Change is your job security", hence we best embrace it. Nicholas reminded us of the Movie "Dead Poet Society" and the central message that changing once standpoint can give us a totally new perspective.

In Session #614: "Collaborating with the Sales Team to delight your Customers" Neil Shorney gave us a refreshing insight into what Sales Teams and PMs think of each other, how they can complement each other and how they should work together. Sales People are not the ogres but the biggest source of information. Their job is:

1. Understand

2. Propose

3. Gain Commitment

They should provide all relevant project information through SPACE CHAMPS. If you ask the right questions following this acronym you get all the information you need. If you contact Neil through LinkedIn he will share the question list with you.

The Closing Session of the Conference was a series of TEDTalks, which were meant to build us up and help us focus on the possibilities not the problems. Often this is shackled by our belief systems and we need to overcome these. 

Mona Chalabi showed us how with 3 simple questions you can check if statistics are trustworthy or not.

1. Can you see uncertainty?

2. Can I see myself in the data?

3/ How was the data collected? - was the sample size representative? For example a sample of 600 might not be big enough if you try to assess the entire population of a country like America. Where key words defined and do all understand it the same way?

Anab Jain  visits the future for a living. No she does not have a time machine. However she and her husband are hired to imagine possible outcomes in the future. They then simulate these in extensive laboratory set-ups and simulations. With that they help clients to find ways of preventing the negative outcomes.

Mark Pollock & Simone George: Mark lost his sight with 22, when he met Simone he was "only" blind. Later he broke his back through a fall from a window. His biggest message is If you can't change the circumstances, you have to change yourselve". He is involved in amazing research and development of robotic walking aides and new approaches. He has seen the possibilities on his own body, including when well aimed electrical shocks made him be able to move his limbs again without the robotic exoskeleton. Now when he walks it is becoming less of the robot walking him and more of Mark walking. 

He stressed that the Optimist often get frustrated along the way. A Realist however accepts the brutal facts and moves on. Be a realist when the going gets tough!

Julia Dhar showed us how debate is healthy if done right. Engage yourself respectfully, separate the ideas from the person and accept that you may be wrong. If there is conflict about an idea / a situation / an issue, have a face-to-face meeting and discuss in the prescribed manner. Practice intellectual humility.

To practice this in your team you can start by devoting 10min in every meeting to debating and idea or issue.

Ingrid Fentell Lee showed us easy ways to find joy. Joy is a little short blimp of "feel good right now" as apposed to happiness which is "feel good over longer time". Joy begins with the senses. Pops of color, rounded shapes, patterns, symmetry, abundance will put joy back into your life. This will then lead to your team being more alert, more productive and happier. Each moment of joy is small, but these joyful dots add up and have many positive long term effects. Look for joy in your life, don;t chase the elusive happiness. It will come by itself.

Roberto Toledo, of the PMI Board of Directors brought us the great news that the pledged 50,000 hours of community service for the UN global sustainability programs has already been reached! The Goal has now been doubled. Lets all work together to reach 100,000 hrs - check on PMI.org for details, or ask your chapter!

Posted by Stephanie Jaeger on: May 15, 2019 06:29 PM | Permalink | Comments (9)

Interview with attendees : #PMIEMEA19

Good afternoon everyone! 

One feedback and request that came from you (our online community) was that during the conference, you'd want to hear more about the conference from those that are attending and getting a "real" insight into what it's like to attend the conference. So, this is what I've done!  I've spoke to a few people over lunch about their conference so I can give you the latest insight. 

Question: Why did you come to PMIEMEA19?

Hani: I wanted to get more experience from other project managers, companies, and get some specific examples that I can bring back to my company. 

Collette: Im looking to earn PDUs and learn more about which career direction might suit me best/next. 

Abdul: I wanted to share my experience with like-minded individuals

Question 2: Have you enjoyed the conference, so far? 

Hani: Yes, on the whole. I'd like more practical examples from the topics and not just generic slides etc.

Collette: Yes, definitely. I didn't expect it to be this good! The networking sessions really surprised me as Ive got to know a lot of different people from different organisations and countries. I've made some new friends this past few days! 

Abdul: Yes. I liked the variation of topics and learning more from some excellent speakers. 

Question 3: What has been your key takeaway of the conference? 

Hani: Focus! I've learned a lot of lessons learned and got a lot of things I can take back to my company. 

Collette: Look at the opportunities that exist that I'm not really seeing at the moment. 

Abdul: What I can do better in my projects towards the future of project management but also what tools I could use in my project later on. 

Summary

This summary was just a quick chat over lunch but I hope that this has given you a little insight into what attendees have taken from the conference and why they attended. What else would you like to know? Comment below!

Here are two videos that I've made today with other attendees at the conference: 

Laurel: https://youtu.be/FPDiNqdtTUE

Dan: https://youtu.be/coIFN7XkZIg

Off-site visit review: https://youtu.be/9Qs8Bfi8L8s

Posted by Emily Luijbregts on: May 15, 2019 10:14 AM | Permalink | Comments (2)

#PMIEMEA19 Closing Session today - the TED Talks

Categories: Extra Info, Good News

We are all looking forward to this closing session today! It will be amazing to attend live TED Talks. We will be reporting about them afterwards and I am looking forward to reading our the different blogs from @Emily, @Karthik & @Moritz.

Just 2 pieces of information to that:

1. If you are a PMI Member you can watch the TED Talks life - check your email for information, the link was send out yesterday. 

It is not a shareable link, since it requires log-in and it is only accessible to PMI Members.

2. During the TED Talks we won't be able to use mobile phones. Please don't expect life updates. We will update you as soon as the sessions are over.

Posted by Stephanie Jaeger on: May 15, 2019 02:39 AM | Permalink | Comments (4)

From Whiskey to Virtual Team Development. Another packed day at PMIEMEA19

Categories: Agile

Day 2 has really kicked off with a bang! This morning, I joined one of the offsite activities that PMI offers at their EMEA Conference. The options available were: A visit to the Microsoft Campus, A visit to the Royal College of Surgeons and finally a trip to Teeling Whiskey Distillery. As a fan of Whiskey, this last option was the biggest highlight for me!

Everyone was really excited and enthused to go to the distillery! I presented a video live from the Distillery on Twitter for everyone and I hope some of you managed to see it! The Distillery tour itself took you through how Whiskey is made but on a boarder level about how the Teeling company has overcome a lot of adversity and challenges to be in the strong market position they are in today and what this means for us as Project Managers. The biggest takeaways for me can be summed up in this picture.

After coming back from the Distillery, it was already time for lunch and I love being able to use this time to Network with other PMs. I always find a table of people that I have never met and just start talking to them about their morning session. It was really fun to be able to see how different people take in different things from each session. During this networking break, we had quite an open discussion about the functionality and practicality of hotdesking/open space working in a project team environment and what worked for them in their projects. I find it fascinating to see how many different ways people can approach challenges in their projects and organisations.

After Lunch, it was time to for us to contribute in the Virtual working /leadership session. I really liked that there was such a large audience interaction and participation in this session as it really showed the wealth of knowledge and experience in the room but also the facilitation skills of the speakers to be able to handle such a passionate group of Project Managers. It was a constant stream of sharing knowledge/ asking questions and giving their feedback which really made this session very worthwhile. I posted a series of pictures live on my Twitter feed (@Em_The_PM) that I can strongly recommend that you look at.

The final session of the day was: Why women make better Project Managers and I felt that this title was a big misleading for the topic that it covered as it was more about the Leadership style needed for 21st Century projects and although the topic was well covered from a Leadership perspective, I wished there would have been more of some takeaways for why and how you can utilise women in your project teams/environments.

The day ended with a fabulous celebration from PMI for their 50th Birthday and what a celebration it was! Live music, acrobatics, fabulous food and networking. This was a really lovely end to the day and although you can see that everyone is very tired from an intense two days of conference, they are really emboldened by what's to come!

It's going to be the last day of the conference today and we are looking forward to some more great sessions and what we're able to learn in this last jam packed day! I'm really looking forward to the TED Talks closing ceremony and can't wait to see what more I can learn today!

Please don't forget to follow me and the other correspondents on Twitter and make sure you're checking the Projectmanagement.com Twitter for the latest snippets!

Posted by Emily Luijbregts on: May 15, 2019 01:28 AM | Permalink | Comments (7)

AA & Mi7 (Ambition, Achievement, Motivation and Inspiration in Seven Steps). My Day Two at #PMIEMEA19

Dia daoibh ar maidin! (“Good morning all” in Irish/Gaelic)

Ambition, Achievement, Motivation, and Inspiration!

These phrases bring out my key learnings from Day Two of #PMIEMEA19 at delightful Dublin.

Turning Ambition into Achievement – A Workshop by Jamil Qureshi

Jamil Qureshi was truly a Rockstar of this event. On 13th May, my fellow team member Stephanie Jaeger and I had enjoyed his exclusive workshop for alumni of PMI’s Leadership Institute Master Class (LIMC).

Jamil started today’s workshop with the thought-provoking group activity to suggest global impacts of all humans mandatorily changing sex at age 30. Several impacts came up: a. Increased gender neutrality b. Increase in sales of unisex clothing c. Booming demand for sex-change surgeries, with specialist doctors becoming billionaires!

The speaker stressed how important it was for project managers to provide time & space for team members to get their work done. “It's about driving productivity, not simply activity,” he said.

Jamil pointed out that it was perfectly normal for people to make mistakes. Excellent lessons could be learned from detaching the action from the person.

Having several bobble-heads on the team is detrimental to project success. Instead, he recommended that project managers could play the imaginable/provable game to explore ideas. The game was a safe way to generate healthy conflict.

Mi7! Motivate and Inspire with Seven Proven Leadership Techniques for Project Success by Sripriya Narayanasamy and yours truly.

It was now time to reverse roles. To take the stage, presenting the first of my two sessions at the #PMIEMEA19 event. It was extremely gratifying to see almost a hundred people in our session. My co-presenter and I felt bad that there were almost 20 people who had no chairs for our session. Here’s a summary of what we presented:

  • Project Success is elusive. Motivational and Inspiring Leadership is a necessity, not an option. Here were seven practical, proven success secrets:
  • Serve as the CEO or your project. Create a compelling vision and communicate clearly. Develop project logos and catchy slogans for project success.
  • Understand & Leverage Diversity: Culturally diverse teams won’t magically “gel” well. As PM, you need to proactively build cohesiveness and work hard to ensure trust, teamwork.
  • Catch them Doing Things Right: Far too often for comfort, project pressures force us to find fault and assign blame. This negative atmosphere drags morale down. Make it a habit to catch people doing things right and praise them for it. This attitude can work wonders in increasing team morale.
  • Cultivate Ethical Behavior: Unethical leaders lose respect and trust. Be open and honest with all your stakeholders. Follow the four pillars of PMI’s Ethics Code: Responsibility, Respect, Fairness, and Honesty.
  • Elevate with Empathy: Emotional Intelligence and Empathy are two of the most important skills in a project manager’s success toolkit. Thinking from your stakeholder’s point of view can vastly improve your leadership effectiveness.
  • Embrace Social Media: Social Media connections can be leveraged to understand team members’ interests, passions, and motivations. This understanding can be invaluable in customized motivation plans.
  • Drive Motivation With Visibility: Almost all humans respond positively to visibility and being assigned important work. However, not all project roles can guarantee these. Leverage WBS-Building, Risk Ownership, and the Critical Path to give visibility to team members with the right attitude.

The tips were an acrostic that forms the word “SUCCEED”


I hope you’re enjoying the continuous coverage of the EMEA Congress 2019 by the Community Engagement Team. In addition to tweets by @PMInstitute and @PMIEvents, regular updates are available on the Twitter handles of our team members, @heykristinj, @Em_the_PM,  @StephanieJaeg10, @moritz_sprenger and yours truly, @KarthikPMO.

Please follow, like, comment, and retweet our continuous coverage on Twitter (https://twitter.com/KarthikPMO), LinkedIn (linkedin.com/in/kramamurthy) and Facebook ( https://www.facebook.com/forkarthik )


On the last day of the conference. I plan to attend and cover these great sessions. Look for detailed coverage of these sessions tomorrow!

  • Strategic Analysis and Decision Making for Complex Projects by Esra Tepeli
  • Creating Collective Value through Generativity: A Leadership Approach for Complexity by Stephano Setti
  • Closing General Session and Keynote Speaker: TED Talks, Curated for PMI by TED

I will also be presenting this session at 9 am (first session of the day).
If you are at the Congress, I’d love to see you there!

  • Agilely Vaulting Over Waterfalls: Applying Agile to Waterfall and Vice Versa

See you soon with updates of the final day.

Meanwhile, have a great day, or as they say in Irish, “Bíodh lá maith agat”

Keep smiling, keep shining, and keep inspiring!


 

Posted by Karthik Ramamurthy on: May 14, 2019 08:33 PM | Permalink | Comments (6)
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