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Interview: July 2008 Archives

The Right Fit

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I finally had them right where I wanted them.

 After their big reveal last week at PMI's Research Conference in Warsaw, Poland, Janice Thomas, Ph.D., and Mark Mullaly, PMP, sat down for an interview, and I could ask them anything about their Researching the Value of Project Management study. It was a wide-ranging discussion covering everything from selling skeptical executives on project management to the number of motorcycles purchased by researchers during the course of the study. (For the record, the answer to that last one would be three.)

I agree with all the fine points made by my fellow blogger and PMI.org editor Kelley Hunsberger in her earlier post.

But what struck me the most--and what I'm still thinking about nearly a week later--was how often talk around the study still comes down to the deceptively simple issue of fit. It seems so basic, but that doesn't make it any less important. For project management to truly show value, companies have to make it their own--attuned to the culture of their country and their organization.

Like the study itself, the authors were full of information and I'll have much, much more on this interview. And be sure to come back to PMI.org/value in August when parts of the interview will be available for viewing.

Behind the Scenes

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To get ready for tomorrow, Gregory Balestrero, PMI president & CEO, and Philip Diab, chair of the PMI Board of Directors, sat down to tape opening messages to air before the live presentation of Researching the Value of Project Management--in full makeup and all. They both seemed very excited about the findings ... but you'll have to wait until tomorrow to hear all the details.

The Value of Volunteering

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While in Warsaw for the Research Conference, I had the pleasure to meet with Piotr Plewinski, PMP, yesterday morning. Piotr, who is with the Gdansk Branch of the PMI Poland Chapter, was going to take me to see the summer camp the chapter has run for five years for Polish orphans, a camp where they take classes in English as a second language. Since I have published several articles about this camp in PMI Today, I was very excited to go and these plans were long in the making. Unfortunately (but fortunately for Poland), road projects tied to the Euro 2012 championship to be hosted by Poland and Ukraine interfered with our plans.

It seems that normally it would take about 2 and one-half hours for a fast native Polish driver like Piotr to get from Warsaw to the camp near Gdansk, but he said that unpredicable weekend traffic jams from road construction would probably increase that time to about 5 hours each way--too difficult to make as a one-day round trip.

So Piotr and I chatted in a cafe about the  camp, how much he has seen the program and the orphans grow in the five years the chapter has run it, the great benefit the campers will see from this education (being more able to get high-paying jobs in construction and other fields), and the challenges of running a volunteer project like this for a chapter that just recently completed the conversion to chapter with branches. One challenge involves the departure of the program manager, who is scheduled to have a baby in August.

I am privileged to know people in the PMI world like Piotr who take project management into the social responsibility realm and really make a difference. Now that's a value of project management! 

Breaking News

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I've just learned that following the live presentation of Researching the Value of Project Management there will be live interviews with principal investigators Janice Thomas, Ph.D., and Mark Mullaly, PMP. Everyone will want to stay tuned for that ...

Lights, Camera, Action ...

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crew_saturday.jpgAfter a brief panic over lost luggage, the crew for Monday's Researching the Value of Project Managment live presentation has arrived in Warsaw--with five cases of cameras, lights, audio equipment, power converters, cables and audio mixers. Today we're setting up a suite for interviews and scouting a few locations. We're ready to roll. 

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