A Strategy & Growth Hub for Program Managers

Kabir Mehta

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Project Management Risk Factors: Managing Change

Posted by Kabir Mehta on Apr 10, 2018 7:12:00 AM

Risk Factor #4 of 4: Change Brings Challenge - How Even Good Change Can Hurt Your Long-term Success

The fourth article in our series: Four Project Management Risk Factors That Contribute to Failure 

In the first three articles of this series, we described internal problems that often lead to project failure, problems that can undo a program manager's best efforts to deliver quality projects 

Do you feel like you get punished for doing a good job? If so, this article is for you.  

We're not going to look at technical, environmental, or internal problems that lead to project failure, but issues that often arise from a program manager's success. In other words, when a project succeeds, the program manager can sometimes become a victim of that success. 

 government-contracting-risk-change-management.jpgPeter: I don’t like my job. Don’t think I’ll go anymore.

Joanna: You’re just not gonna go?

Peter: Yeah.

Joanna: Won’t you get fired?

Peter: I don’t know. But I really don’t like it and, uh, I’m not gonna go.

Joanna: So you’re gonna quit?

Peter: No, not really. I’m just gonna stop going.

Joanna: When did you decide all that?

Peter: About an hour ago.

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Topics: project management best practices, project management risks, project management risk factors

Project Management Risk Factors: Competing Priorities

Posted by Kabir Mehta on Apr 10, 2018 7:12:00 AM

Risk Factor #3 of 4: 3 Ways a Lack of Support From Senior Management Can Hurt Your Government Contracting Success

The third article in our series: Four Project Management Risk Factors that Contribute to Failure

No matter how good of a program manager you are, some factors will impact your success over which you have little to no control. Perhaps the biggest factor of all comes from within - your contracting culture and company leadership. We're sharing here three ways company culture and even leadership can hurt your program and personal success: 

  1. Communication & Authority: what does senior management do when customer priorities conflict with corporate priorities? 
  2. Bureaucracy: when an opportunity with a deadline appears, how fast does senior management react? 
  3. Responsibility: does senior management take ultimate responsibility?  

Let's look at these one at a time.

government-contracting-risk-factor-lack-of-support.jpg

Hello Peter, what's happening? Listen, are you gonna have those TPS reports for us this afternoon?

 

But first, how well-supported is your program by senior management?

Find out, fast - just take our quick assessment:

Take the Program Health & Risk Assessment

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Topics: project management best practices, project management risks, project management risk factors

Project Management Risk Factors: Big Challenges

Posted by Kabir Mehta on Apr 10, 2018 7:12:00 AM

Risk Factor #1 of 4: 3 Kinds of Challenges You Can't Overcome Alone

The first article in our series: Four Project Management Risk Factors that Contribute to Failure

In this article we're going to look at challenges that are difficult for Program Managers to overcome on their own, without the help of a strong and supportive senior management and strategic planning.

project-management-planning-project-management-risks-amundsen-scott.jpg

 Make contracting success easier:

Download The Ultimate PM Toolkit

3 Kinds of Big Challenges

Program Managers face many challenges in their task to deliver successful programs to Government customers. There are however, three categories of challenges that are big enough that PM usually needs more support to overcome them. We have termed these three categories:

  • Technical Challenges
  • Silo Challenges
  • Policy Limitation Challenges
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Topics: project management best practices, project management risks, project management risk factors

Project Management Risk Factors: Lack of Alignment

Posted by Kabir Mehta on Apr 10, 2018 7:12:00 AM

Risk Factor #2 of 4: 3 Kinds of Challenges You Can't Overcome Alone

The second article in our series: Four Project Management Risk Factors that Contribute to Failure

We have spent a lot of time talking about how important it is to follow Best Project Management Practices when managing your Government contracts. Having a defined, proven process in place is the best way to consistently manage quality projects and delight your customers. However, this is not enough to ensure contracting success, and therefore this series exists to help you reflect on, then avoid or fix scenarios that can kill success. 

The term Lack of Alignment in the title is one way of describing a company that does not have a unified vision and guiding principles to fulfill that vision.

Does your company suffer from a Lack of Alignment? Get an answer just minutes after taking our assessment:

Take the Program Health & Risk Assessment

Though there are many ways a lack of alignment across your teams can prevent you from successfully delivering projects, delighting your customer, and reaching personal goals, this article will explore three of them.

lack-of-alignment-program-management-team.jpg

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Topics: project management best practices, project management risks, project management risk factors

Project Management Risk Factors: An Overview

Posted by Kabir Mehta on Apr 10, 2018 7:10:00 AM

A Guide to Non-technical Project Management Risks to Avoid or Fix

We've written a four-part series of articles on the Best Project Management Practices for delighting your Government customer. 

In that series, we promised you extremely satisfying results by following these four practices: 

  1. High CPARs scores 
  2. A Government contract safe from competition 
  3. Business growth through new task orders 
  4. Referrals and opportunities for new programs within your agency 
We've provided tools to make it easy for you to implement these practices, and shared case studies so you can learn and apply our hard-won experiences to increase your own contracting success. 

But even after this—even while following best practices toward project success—there are still variables that can hurt your project or personal success. These are situations you should not only pay attention to, but you should know how to mitigate these risks when possible. 

four-horsemen-project-management-risks.jpgYou can also call these risk factors the Four Horsemen of Project Management Doom 

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Topics: project management best practices, project management risks, project management risk factors

Project Management Best Practices for Program Managers: Serve

Posted by Kabir Mehta on Dec 22, 2017 7:00:00 AM

Get to Know & Serve Your Program's End-User

Successful Government Contracting is About Building Bridges

It may seem contradictory, but there is one scenario where greater awareness of your program can put the whole thing at risk.

As every contractor knows, most Government agencies exist in silos. In fact, each department within an agency can be a silo, resulting in a lack of communication and trust even between departments that are within the same agency.

If your Government program gets discovered at the wrong time, you might find that someone with the power of the pen from a different silo has the ability to bring your entire program and contract into question.

In the last few years, this happened to us.

project-manager-best-practices-serve.jpgGreat analogy this, but just don't over-rely on jenga blocks to help you build relationships

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Topics: project management best practices

Project Management Best Practices for Program Managers: Report

Posted by Kabir Mehta on Dec 19, 2017 7:00:00 AM

Turn Your Interim Progress Report into a Golden Opportunity

The Third out of Four Best Practices: Because IPRs are a Wonderful Ally

In recent years we've heard the following phrase from Government Officers: "You know, there's no value in attending IPRs anymore."

More interesting is when they said it: after leaving in the middle of a company's IPR presentation (and not long after they had stayed for the entirety of our own).

Why would they say this to us, without fear of being offensive?

Because they didn't see our presentation a your business-as-usual IPR.

In fact, they didn’t see our presentation as an IPR at all, even though that’s exactly what it was. How did we accomplish this, and how can you do the same?

Turn Your IPRs into Reputation-Builders

project-manager-best-practices-report-ipr.jpg

When was the last time the audience attending your IPR was this happy?

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Topics: project management best practices

Project Management Best Practices for Program Managers: Remind

Posted by Kabir Mehta on Sep 7, 2017 12:35:25 PM

A Systematic Process for creating Heroic Weekly Status Updates

The Second of Four Best Project Management Practices

project-manager-best-practices-remind.jpg

This article is all about heroes: remind your customer you are their personal hero by making them look like one.

Every government contract comes with a requirement to keep your customer informed about the project's status. Having this requirement is the prudent thing to do. But no quality contractor should have to be told to keep their customer in the loop.*

The trouble is, status updates are something easy to avoid. If there are problems in the project, if your program is going over budget or missing deadlines, when you give your customer a status update, you'll have to the own up to the truth. You won't be able to hide behind your credentials or past successes any more.

Allow us to therefore to revolutionize your understanding of Status Updates (as in, turn your feelings on them 180º).

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Topics: project management best practices

Project Management Best Practices for Program Managers: Communicate

Posted by Kabir Mehta on Sep 5, 2017 4:38:54 PM

A Systematic Process for Fast, Enjoyable, & Results-Driven Meetings

The First of Four Best Project Management Practices

Meetings can literally be the bane of your project.

Without meetings, your project will suffer a dire lack of communication. As a program manager you will never know which tasks are languishing because your teammates are stuck (both the teammates in your company and at your Government customer).

With meetings, you can waste a lot of time, kill momentum, and discourage your teammates who will wish they could be getting something "real" done.

You need a systematic way to transform your meetings into fast, enjoyable, and results-driven processes.

project-manager-best-practices-communicate.jpg We guarantee your team will be as happy about meetings as these guys.

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Topics: project management best practices

Project Management Best Practices for Program Managers: An Overview

Posted by Kabir Mehta on Sep 1, 2017 9:54:25 AM

How to Become the Incumbent Contractor, Gain Task Orders & Bid Opportunities

A System of Project Management Best Practices

The most important principle to become the incumbent contractor, protect your Government Program, and gain new tasks orders & bid opportunities is to delight your customer.

project-manager-best-practices-overview.jpgThis is exactly what it looks like when your customer is delighted.

But how can you do this, besides the obvious answer of delivering your Government Program as contracted, on time, and within budget?

What if you had a systematic & proven process to delight a Government Customer?

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Topics: project management best practices

Want to Win More Bids & Task Orders?

Learn the step-by-step system we use to make Government Contracting successful:
  • Successfully transition to ISO 9001:2015
  • Make your Program immune to competition
  • Improve CPARS scores
  • Get new Task Orders
  • Get new Bid Opportunities
Through a series of emails and blog posts, we'll guide you through project management best practices as they apply to Government Contracting, and help you succeed.

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