Second Order Project Management
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|Format:||Paperback, 115 pages|
|Other Information: ||Illustrations|
|Published In: ||United Kingdom, 28 December 2011|
If you do what you've always done, you'll get what you've always got, and if it's not good enough, you need to do something else. As project complexity increases, so too does the need to do new things. The existing Project Management tools - examples being Earned Value Management, PRINCE2, Lifecycle Management, PMBOK[registered] - are incredibly useful; but they were designed for linear project development in a stable, understood environment. The term is First Order. "Second Order Project Management" (PM) goes beyond, addressing the issues of a complex, unstable, uncertain environment with all its associated difficulties. Second Order PM has to address four major issues: the conspiracy of optimism, inappropriate contracting models, the application of methods and tools capable of dealing with complexity, and the need for creative, inspirational, adhocratic leadership. These problems are compounded by the need to convince executive sponsors from different disciplines to invest in the necessary process improvement - this book is designed to help alleviate the frustration that every member of the profession has experienced when trying to gain such approval. Illustrated by interviews with an international group of very senior managers responsible for managing highly complex projects, Michael Cavanagh explains why there is nothing magical, or even complicated, about Second Order PM. The techniques discussed include aspects of System Thinking, Experiential Learning and its Application, Ethics and Governance, Stakeholder Relationships, Appropriate Contracting Models, Outcome-driven Management and Leadership Behaviour, all recognised as increasingly necessary in direct proportion to the complexity of the project at hand.
Table of Contents
Foreword; Introduction; Part 1 Uncertainty, Complexity and Impact on Projects: What makes projects complex?; First and second order project management; Leadership in an uncertain world; Outcomes and ethics.; Part 2 Second Order Tools and Tactics: The systems approach to project management; Experiential learning; Appropriate contracting; Conclusion; Appendices; References; Some suggestions for further reading; Index.
About the Author
Michael Cavanagh is a consultant specialising in organizational learning, development and project management. In his 40-year career, Michael Cavanagh has worked as a Programmer, Systems Analyst, Project Manager, Department Head and Consultant in a number of business sectors. In recent years, he has concentrated on the transfer of knowledge and wisdom in an organisational context. This work on experiential learning has led to the focus of his research and consulting activity being the use of systems thinking techniques to perform 'forensic' analysis of major project failure and the ways in which lessons can be derived and corrective process improvement implemented, applying these ideas in very large long-term projects. Michael has worked alongside organisations such as BAE Systems, General Dynamics, The National Computing Centre and British Nuclear Fuels in the UK; Salford, Manchester and SKEMA (Lille) Business Schools; NASA and Bombardier Transportation in North America; the European Union; and a number of other clients in Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt, Ghana, South Africa, Singapore and Malaysia. He is a regular speaker at International Conferences.
'I liked the practical views/examples of the author as well as his ability to take a difficult subject and tackle it in this short book... and I came away with a few new nuggets of knowledge. I would recommend this to people interested in project management and projects in general. The idea of complex projects is right on the mark and what we do with this information is up to the individual reader. It is a book that will allow you to think differently, and give you some ideas on how to approach project management from a different perspective.' Michael O'Conner, A. James Clark School of Engineering, University of Maryland, USA. 'This book is worth a read if you're facing a new more complex challenge than you are used to or you want to improve the outcomes of your projects. As the author says, doing things the same way will produce the same results, so go on be brave, open your mind and try something different.' Duncan Chappell, PMP, President PMI UK Chapter
|Publisher: ||Ashgate Publishing Limited|
|Dimensions: ||21.0 x 13.0 centimeters (0.23 kg)|