Project Management

/Project Management

The Perfect company

Recently, I was working as a change manager on a gigantic roll out project for a massive multinational.  Everything was exactly as it should be.  When the business had an idea they spontaneously reached out to their IT colleagues to seek advice and support.  And when the IT team hit a technical problem the business was always there to help them. The senior managers too, were very supportive, asking how they could lend a hand. Everywhere I went, people understood the problem that our project was solving and the benefits of solving it. The communication department were fantastic, they anticipated [...]


Why do we allow projects to fail?

I recently had a very interesting conversation with a programme director of a large IT company based in the UK. During the conversation, he asked me, “Why do Projects Fail?”, this is a question that I hear quite often, but before I gave my opinion, a little voice in my head said, “The question should be, why do we ALLOW projects to fail?” I believe there is a subtle but important difference here. By asking the question, “why do projects fail?”, it allows us to believe that a project has a mind of its own and distance ourselves from the [...]


Taking on the impossible

I like to think that I have taken on some impressive projects in my time, however nothing I have done even begins to compare with the achievements of Donald Henderson.  Donald was born in Lakewood, Ohio in 1928. He obtained a medical degree and choose epidemiology as his favoured direction.  In 1966 the World Health Authority offered him the job of eradicating the world of the deadliest of diseases, smallpox.  Known to have been around since before the pharos and responsible for between 300 and 500 million deaths in the 20th. century alone, no one truly believed that the project [...]


And the answer to my question is?

I don’t know what your school teachers were like but mine, on the whole, were rather authoritarian. They talked, you listened, they tested. They gave out books, you read them, they tested. Their questions were predictable and if you were academic (good at storing and retrieving data) easy to answer. For many, this style of learning continued into their university days. ‘Give back to the professors what they want and you will get what you want.’ Now this is not at all to knock the education establishment. In between all the long holidays, I think I had a pretty good [...]


It’s not normal

“You really need to get over to my company, we have some serious issues that need sorting out. It’s not going to be easy the way things get done in my office, or should I say ‘not done’. It’s not normal”. This was an opening statement someone said to me at a New Year’s reception. “And a very happy Ney Year to you too” was my rather impolite reply. But after stepping back and asking some polite questions, what my fellow guest described to me seemed pretty normal in many of the companies I have had the privilege of working. [...]