Improving Project Management - A Canadian Opportunity
Mistakes, are to be expected as just part of human nature, and are often excusable. A cake failing to rise or a trip being canceled are minor blips in the grand scheme. These errors do serve as valuable learning experiences. However, when projects fail on a grand scale - and frequently, particularly national or industrial projects, that should demand our collective attention and concern. Enter the argument for improving PROJECT MANAGEMENT as an opportunity for us all.
Consider an everyday domestic project: cooking a meal, for instance. It's a simple task, yet it involves a series of processes that, while not demanding formal management, failure can have significant domestic consequences. This analogy extends to business and governments for larger, more complex projects where cost overruns, delayed deliveries, and compromised quality, are not just problems but symptoms of a broader problem. Canada, in particular, is witnessing a troubling increase in such project failures and compares poorly with our US and EU competitors. The root cause? Poor Project Management—a systemic issue prevalent most notably in the government sector, construction and transportation industries.
It is all too rare that projects are completed on time, on budget, and on spec. This should not be the norm. Why is this cause? The answer lies in understanding the multitude of factors involved in project management. From accurately defining the project scope and adapting to changing work orders, to fragile supply chains including manpower issues of training, location - off-shore, complex and competing social, environmental, fiscal, and regulatory interests, and navigating intangibles like weather, inflation, or a pandemic—each can play a crucial role.
The stakes are high, especially for large-scale projects. The socio-economic repercussions from delays and budget overruns in pipelines, transportation, construction, military and IT projects are not trivial. These setbacks impact taxpayers, tarnish reputations, fuel inflation and bankruptcies, and affect productivity indices, yet have become so routine as to be almost disregarded.
Poor project management is an important factor contributing to Canada's low productivity levels. While Canadian management practices in manufacturing and retail are generally good, they are not as robust as those in the United States. This gap in management quality can impact productivity, as effective management practices are closely linked to higher productivity levels. Canada's productivity issues are not solely due to management practices but are a significant factor. The country's productivity growth has been comparatively poor by international standards and on the decline. Improving management practices is a huge opportunity and demands fixing—not for us as taxpayers or consumers but as citizens vested in our country's future.
Learning project management is fundamental for business and the foundation for any manager where projects are core. In fact, learning project management would be of value for everyone - even us bakers. The certification of professionals should be mandatory on public projects. Collaboration is essential when projects involve multiple stakeholders and suppliers. Our systems need to be overhauled to ensure efficiency in delivery, adherence to specifications, and cost management and an end to injecting social justice objectives in public procurement. The current state is far from ideal, and a national reckoning is necessary to understand and address these systemic failures. - Editor@KEInetwork.net
Improving Product Management - A Canadian Opportunity
Thursday January 25th, 2024
4:30PM MST 3:30PM PST 6:30PM EST
We've assembled a panel with over 100 years of collective experience in the practice of Project Management in both the public and private sectors. They've seen it all, the successes and failures, the celebrations and the excuses. Join us for learning what needs to be done to make things right, for improving project management at all levels including the role of new tools for automating many of the critical processes in complex projects.
Ask Questions - Think Alot
Be curious: Ask questions. Listen more. Think alot. An interview HERE 13 years ago with Edward de Bono, father of lateral thinking makes exactly these points. I host a "seance" each Friday in the lounge of a local Chateau. There we sip spirits, hence the "seance" moniker. Here are a few of our questions and stimulating topics you might consider for thoughtful discussion:
Davos Developments: Argentine President's Market Emphasis and Tucker Carlson's Commentary. Whasup at the WEF meeting in Davos? Big shake-up as Argentina's President favours the market and fears the government. HERE. Tucker Carlsons selective perspective is entertaining HERE
Analyzing Immigration: Housing, Public Services, and Policy Adjustments. As Canada's birthrate declines and immigration increases what is the impact on housing and public service capacity? Should immigration be tempered and/or private sector incentives introduced? FOR MORE
Exploring AI: ChatGPT, Ethical Concerns, and Regulation Dilemmas. Have you tried ChatGPT? Does the development of AI need to be slowed down? Too much too fast? Are new apps knowing me better and selling me more? Is disinformation rampant - should I be worried? Who is guarding humanity against AI going rogue? What are the options and who should be the regulator - WEF, government, industry, the market?
The Quest for Everlasting Life: Market Potential and Suicide Regulation. Is there a market for life extension - one day at a time or go-for-broke? Why is suicide regulated? FOR MORE
Mental Health Evolution: Responsibility, Detection, and Societal Changes. Where does responsibility fit? Is mental illness increasing or has detection improved? Have the categories of mental health increased and public tolerance decreased? Are children less resilient than in the past and more prone to mental illness today?
Understanding Homelessness: Causes, Prevention, and Societal Responses. What's behind the homeless - have public services failed them and are they failing us all? Who dares discuss prevention? Think - where did the homeless come from? Where should they go? Caring and compassion aren't enough. Imposing housing and wrap-around services sounds mandatory and institutional. Are we prepared to accept the personal consequences when public tolerance breaks?
Assessing Free Speech: Political and Media Exaggerations, and the Role of Disinformation. Do politicians, media, comedians and Elon Musk knowingly exaggerate even tell lies? Can you distinguish between fact and fiction? Is disinformation really a campaign of Russian origin? Should Tucker Carlson be allowed into Canada? Who to trust? Your turn.
I have a free ticket to listen to Conrad Black and Rex Murphy, Peter Parker and Tucker Carlson January 24th at Rogers Place in Edmonton.
Want to join me? Reply. I'm just curious. - Editor@KEInetwork.net
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