September 28 & 29, 2020 | Virtual
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Unfortunatelly country governs, with some few exceptions, are not aware about project management in everything they do, no matter the corona virus or not.
What we need is a few experienced PMs to aspire for country leadership positions to set a good example ;-)
Thankfully there are leaders like Jacinta Ardern who are acting with a true sense of urgency.
Hope there will be a coordination of exit strategies and their interfaces. They will remain local though, as situations in this phase are diverse per country, region and even city. Over time we can expect the virus to spread more and be more evenly distributed, the whole exercise of lock-downs is targeted to make this process slow and manageable for the health systems, wider society and economy.
In Germany, we have 16 states and every state has its own strategy re. Corona (It is about exit but also still containment) which is represented by state legislation. There is a national strategy every 2 weeks that guides these strategies and is fed from the state data.
Some states even closed their border - within Germany - to others to avoid travel. Some cities have situations where they countered local outbreaks. So far, this working fine for containment, though different relaxation schemes create some dissatisfaction, as they seem unequal, unfair.
So, there is no place for a EU Corona strategy pushed down to the countries, even if it could be done, but for a role of the EU to coordinate, focus resources where needed and make sure global progress is made. Also dealing with EU borders and migrant camps sitting along them in dire circumstances.
Unluckily I currently see no relevance of project management in this fight. Epidemiologists are providing the frameworks and roadmaps, administration is beefing up resources to continue containment according to these roadmaps and politicians are taking decisions.
The intervention of the PM in recovery plans is important, nevertheless i think that in this phase where some countries start to relax confinement measures (at least my country is starting), and the economical order as changed in so many ways.
I think is important to companies to rethink their own strategic plans in face of this revolution, to have a clear assessment of the projects that should be added or removed to the strategic portfolio.
To the enterprises it's time to the strategic analysts and portfolio managers to assess the external environment , the internal company factors so that the company can decide on the paths that want to follow and then if necessary use the project managers to help in the implementation of recovery plans.
It's clear that every country will have it's own strategy to exit from this crises, this happens due to political reasons and also to different leadership behaviors.
How about the old, good lessons learned that can be applied in this situation.
What we experience is not the first pandemic that the world faces. Some analysis of what was good, what was bad or could have been done differently from the past ones? Assess the current life style, environmental factors and come up with good list of measures. Very important - define the risks and measures. I am especially missing the risk assessment - may be it is done, but not advertised. Transparent reports - meaning reliable data is very important to draw conclusions and measures.
All of these are well known, good project management good practices that can be applied.
Covid-19 has shown the lack of crisis management skills from the majority of political leaders who are in principle elected to support and create laws or policies that govern the land and, by extension, its people.
They underestimated the risk. They provided confusing information. They changed key messages in a short time span. And they are bond to economical interests that influence their decisions. To top things off, the European Union has failed to provide a unanimous response to the virus. The virus is global, why the response not?
The execution of a number of projects that were proposed by different insitutions acrosss the globe a few years ago in order to protect the world against this pandemic could have likely helped in mitigating the risk. At the present moment, a PM adds limited value in solving the issue. I doubt that PMI is receiving thousands of calls requesting PMs to fight the crisis. Now it is the turn of science, and it should be like this.
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