Thursday, 30 October 2008

Round table - Are project management academies the future?

People not processes at heart of project success. Terry Cooke-Davies pm guilty of "schizophrenic" approach to people, asking different questions to that of processes and tools. People matter.

Brought into sharp focus by Paul Hodgkins at Siemens. 4% of company's global workforce (career pm) responsible for 50 per cent of business revenue and profitability. Siemens, which operates in 190 countries, developing "a common and consistent method of matching people capability with projects". Done through academy - a way of describing a joined-up approach to developing expert pm communication within an organisation."

Jeremy Galpin, Costain, described academy journey (measuring behaviour and cognitive ability) over past 18 months. Said it had "helped to minimise risk" of placing the wrong people with wrong projects. Also established national/internation benchmark to measure quality. Big draw of academy ability to develop consistency throughout organisation; transparency of resource moved around dif sectors; recognised on global scale.

Q&A session: Story sessions excellent way of learning. Connecting pm to pm. "Firm believer in letting people make mistakes," said Paul. "Biggest mistake is being afraid to make one." Share experiences. Pm mentor works well. Company man or all-round pm? Both. Pm needs to understand global language (meet customer expectations) but with internal perspective.

33% of organisation in session either have or are considering having pm academy.

94% of pm believe pm academy will become permanent feature of corporate project landscape.

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