Category Archives: Useful Practices & Management Tools

Practical idea that will help you lead a strategic initiative team.

Connecting Strategy to Execution

I was recently asked, “How should the PMO (project management office) connect strategy to execution?”  In order to provide a compact answer, I’m going to sidestep the more-fundamental challenges: organizations have too many projects, every project is important to someone … Continue reading

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Complexity: Four Principles for Program Managers

I started writing this article to report and elaborate on eleven useful practices as identified in a 2014 Project Management Institute (PMI) publication titled Navigating Complexity: A Practice Guide. I thought it would be a straightforward project, but it morphed … Continue reading

Posted in Ambiguity and Strong-Minded Thinking, Competencies of Strategic Initiative Leaders, Program & Portfolio Management, Useful Practices & Management Tools | 2 Comments

Use the PAVER Framework to Assure Strategic Commitments

As they left the courthouse on the day their divorce was finalized, Mark apologized to his now ex-wife Renee, “I told you I would do some things for the benefit of our marriage. I didn’t do them, and I’m sorry.” … Continue reading

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Strategic Experiments & Agile Responses

Most strategic initiatives involve complex environments. The emergent nature of complexity means that the use of experimentation is essential to progress. A good strategic initiatives design is one of experimenting, testing a hypothesis, and expecting emerging solutions. You want to … Continue reading

Posted in Ambiguity and Strong-Minded Thinking, Competencies of Strategic Initiative Leaders, Useful Practices & Management Tools | 1 Comment

Five Must-Know Patterns of Disruption

Strategic initiatives are game-changing programs, thus either defend against or create disruption. Five patterns: 1. You’re either an incumbent or a disruptor. 2. Incumbents are disrupted when their attention is elsewhere. 3. Disruptive innovators have open minds and open objectives. 4. A disruption life cycle exists. 5. The strategic initiative leader and team have important responsibilities.
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Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity, & Ambiguity (VUCA)

Greg explains how to resolve volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity for a strategic initiative. He also provides a critique of the so-called VUCA prime model (vision, understanding, clarity, & agility) concluding that the VUCA prime model is only 25% valid.
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Four Recommendations for Effective Program Governance

This article discusses good design of program governance, tailored to the special case of strategic initiatives. It identifies three common mistakes, and then four recommendations. The recommendations are: 1) People respect what you inspect, 2) Allow for mistakes, 3) You want to selectively impose policy, and 4) Design so that the organization is concentrating on the decisive aspects of the strategy. The article concludes with few remarks on striking a balance between conflicting needs such as strategy and risk management.
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Posted in Program & Portfolio Management, Success Principles for Strategic Initiatives, Useful Practices & Management Tools | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment