Tuesday, December 2, 2008

ProjectWorld Day 2: Programs, Processes, Analysis, Oh My

On our second day at ProjectWorld, we continued with several tracks that covered specific roles and responsibilities of Project Managers, Program Managers, and Business Analysts, but the focus was looking beyond specific skill sets but rather at the necessary steps to develop and manage corporate environments where these individuals flourish; where they have a direct stake in the outcome of their projects and goals.

We had an opportunity to speak with Jonathan Gilbert, Director of Client Solutions of ESI International about his presentation regarding nine steps to improving Program Managers effectiveness as programs become increasingly complex and expand beyond commonly considered definitions for their roles in organizations. You can learn more in this white paper offering as well.

I than sat down for an interview with David Bieg, Executive Vice President of DevelopMentor, who shared some details regarding his presentation at ProjectWorld and the importance of enterprise analysis to achieve necessary corporate goals.

Finally, I had a chance to meet with Debra Morin of American Tower Corporation who presented at this year's ProjectWorld. She presented on the specific program at American Tower that focuses on educating and supporting employees on the importance of "Process Excellence."

ProjectWorld brought together corporate practitioners and thought-leaders, educators and experts who discussed and presented on a wide range of topics and issues currently facing professionals across industries. Hopefully these posts have provided you with a glimpse of the experience at ProjectWorld for those of you who could not attend, as well as offer attendees some detail into some of the presenters you may not have had the opportunity to sit in on. We're already hard at work planning for next year's events, so subscribe to our feed as we will be bringing you regular industry updates as well as posts from many of our speakers as well as other industry experts on a daily basis.

ProjectWorld Update Day 2: Preventation vs Response

I delayed posting details from our second day at ProjectWorld, in order to give many of you a chance to get back from the holidays and get into the office prepared to look back on the various speakers and presentations and tremendous amount of information provided. I had the chance to record and interview several presenters, so while I am late with this update, there is more here than you expected.

To begin with, I have two recordings of General Russel L. Honoré, (Ret), Commander of JOINT TASK FORCE KATRINA keynote presentation from the second morning. His background and experience, particularly overseeing the federal response to Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans gave his concepts and ideas added weight. He considered how fundamentally our nation has focused too much energy, resources, time and effort on responses to disasters rather than prevention. This is not to say that response isn't necessary, but rather if half of what goes into response was put in prevention for those hypothetical what-if scenarios we often doubt will occur, then in all likelihood we will avoid the worst of a catastrophe. Here he is discussing the importance of preparation and how critical it is to impact the outcome of a disaster scenario.

He goes on to more specifically to engage the attendees about our failure as a nation in regards to our priorities. As we face a critical period in our history, he reminds us that the future requires us to learn how to live with less not more, and in doing so we can achieve far more than we imagine. By re-evaluating our priorities and focusing on education, technology, and the solutions to prevent the worst-case scenarios; we will retain our role as a global leader able to deal with the difficulties we have yet to consider. Here is a portion of his presentation:

General Honoré's presentation looked beyond the high-level but at the stark realities we face, and will continue to face in the 21st century. He challenged the audience to consider that business is more than seeking profits, but rather to solve people's problems. Words I think everyone took to heart during his presentation.