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PMI Synergy 2014 is livestreamed on The PM Channel

PMI Synergy 2014 was livestreamed by The PM Channel, our first ever livestream, the stream was live for 8.5 hours via a link that was available through pre-registration on the PMI website or on the day via our twitter @ThePMChannel.


Backstage PMI Synergy 2014

Backstage at PMI Synergy 2014

PMI Synergy 2014 was an exciting and quick paced event, the speakers were engaging and varied and the light relief of the entertainment was well-received.

The PM Channel was there throughout the day using the stream to show fellow exhibitors the ‘action’ as well as promoting the talks we were streaming on Twitter.

PMI Synergy 2014 took place on the 14th of November in Westminster Methodist Central Hall and was attended by over 800 people, this week the videos of the event became available on The PM Channel.

There were talks from Sir Tim Smit, Jane Sparrow, Max McKeown, James T. Brown, Ricardo Triano, Maria Matarelli and Steve Barnett, below are links to recaps of some of the videos available.

James T. Brown on Change Management

Max McKeown – How to Shape your Future


PMI SYNERGY 2014 - Methodist Central Hall

PMI SYNERGY 2014 – Methodist Central Hall

Max McKeown – How to Shape your Future

Max McKeown PMI Synergy 2014

Max McKeown at PMI Synergy 2014

On the 14th of November Max was the last speaker at the PMI UK Chapter Synergy 2014 discussing How to Shape your Future.

Max McKeown works as a strategic adviser for four of the five most admired companies in the world. He is a well-known speaker on subjects including innovation and competitive advantage. His latest book, The Innovation Book: How to Manage Ideas and Execution to Deliver Outstanding Results was published in June 2014 and is the follow-up to The Strategy Book.

Max opened by questioning our assumptions of stability, “Stability is a dangerous illusion, except that it is also the standing assumption.” Change is constant and a project that assumes that its context will remain the same is destined to fail, in his talk Max uses the image of waves to illustrate the choices we have when we are confronted with change.

We can choose to be stranded, we can choose to sink, we can choose to be smashed or we can surf it.

Max expands this to call out members of the work force who resist change or don’t use the resources and people around them to help them catch up with and surf the change.

Max makes some interesting points about culturally ingrained behaviors, “We call the best and the worst of them Best Practice, we say this is a list of the things you must know and this is the way that you must behave. As though those things will never change.” This means that when a situation is high stress we tend to rely on previous behaviors whether those were successful or not causing repeated mistakes.

He goes on to talk about future thinking, market placement and the way we can change the way we react to those changes in a way that will help us chose and manage our futures.

To check out this and more content from PMI Synergy 2014 on the Development package of The PM Channel.

To keep up with the Max Mckeown’s Communication wave follow us on twitter on @ThePMChannel.

James T. Brown on Change Management

James T. Brown on Change Management

James T. Brown on Change Management at PMI Synergy 2014


On the 14th of November James spoke at the PMI UK Chapter Synergy 2014 on Change Management and its importance to the field of Project Management.

James has served as a subject matter expert for a leading project software vendor and is the author of The Handbook of Program Management published by McGraw-Hill. He has been published in PM Network, PE Magazine, PMI Community Post, Projects@Work, The Systems Thinker and PM World Today. A recognized authority in project management, he is a frequently invited keynote speaker on project management and leadership.

Using a fishing trip as an example James started his talk by drawing a compelling comparison between a fisherman who did not listen and customers who do the same. “A lot of times when our customers don’t listen to us as Project Managers it’s nice to think it’s there problem. But guess what? It’s our problem, we have to find a way to adapt them to the change.”

He went on to discuss his ideas about the purpose and shape of Project Management, James T. Brown discussed Change Management as a ‘Romance thing’ encouraging the audience to woo their stakeholders, he doesn’t claim it is an step in the process but describes it as a plan.

James T. Browns approach to Project Management is interesting and in this talk he uses his long career in Project Management as well as his personal life to draw compelling and engaging examples and parallels.

Check out this and other talks from PMI Synergy from the development package on The PM Channel.

More great content from APM, PMI and EVA 19

More great content from APM, PMI and EVA 19

Leading internationally renowned speakers have been filmed at recent events including the APM conference, PMI UK Chapter evening meetings and EVA 19 Project Control conference.  Now with over 650 videos and 150 different contributors from around the world, The PM Channel provides an unparalleled source of on demand learning for project managers.

Watch three top speakers from recent events for free now:

Andy Griffee, W1 Programme Director, BBC speaking on the at the APM Conference 2014

Dr. Harvey Maylor, former director of ICPM at Cranfield University, speaking on complexity at EVA 19 Project Control conference

Bart Bernink, ESI International, speaking on projects in an agile environment at PMI UK Chapter evening meeting

Procurement of large infrastructure projects focus for video magazine

APM’s video magazine this month looks at large public sector infrastructure projects with particular focus on procurement.

Provided by The PM Channel, January’s edition has contributions from many different organisations involved in these mega-projects including Bechtel, High Speed 2 (HS2), Turner & Townsend, Glasgow 2014 and National Audit Office (NAO).

Video magazine

All content has been filmed at APM events along with commissioned interviews from Costain and a leading independent consultant combined with selected content from the 26th IPMA World Congress in Greece.

View the video magazine for APM from The PM Channel today

Douglas Oakervee, former chairman for High Speed 2, spoke at last year’s APM Project Management Conference. He explains the guidance and advice being given to the Secretary of State regarding the hybrid bill necessary for phase 1 of HS2.

Bill Hewlett, technical director of Costain draws upon his great experience to explain the importance of matching the form of procurement to the project’s complexity. He shows how the different forms of procurement should be used.

Ailie MacAdam is an award-winning project director with experience on mega-projects across the globe and joined Bechtel over 26 years ago. She spoke at the 2012 APM Conference and is currently delivery director for Crossrail, the new railway line going through the heart of London. She describes some of the procurement challenges for Europe’s largest engineering project.

Craig Sloan was head of programme management and risk for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games when he spoke about balancing the delivery of an outstanding sport event, whilst meeting the bid commitments. He also covers the obligations of the contract as well as supporting the aspirations to leave a lasting legacy. The Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games is also the focus for this year’s Scottish Conference.

Toby Kliskey, director of Turner & Townsend Project Management Ltd, advocates a systematic approach to managing change in public sector projects – meeting success criteria with constantly changing parameters and constraints.

Tim Banfield is a director of NAO and has specialised in the examination of public sector acquisition issues for almost 25 years. He has led and contributed to the production of over 100 published reports. Speaking at the 2013 APM Conference, he gives his views on designing projects for success.

Dr Steve Simister, an independent consultant, talks about the two main factors affecting the selection of a client’s procurement strategy and goes on to describe the four main approaches. He explains their pros and cons briefly and how each approach relates to risk transfer.

Two contributions from the IPMA World Congress by Bob Dignen and Hans-Petter Kraner on the challenges of large projects conclude this month’s video magazine.

PMI Synergy 2013 will not be missed!

PMI Synergy 2013 will not be missed!

 13 dynamic presenters, speakers and contributors were filmed by The PM Channel at this year’s event held for the first time at Central Hall, Westminster, London

 Presented by Michel Thiry and David Hillson, Synergy 2013 was deemed a great success by the delegates.  Most presentations will be available soon on The PM Channel by subscription and through the PMI UK members’ website free of charge.


Speakers included:

Jim Lawless, Hammish Taylor, Alison Charles, Nick Fewings, Steve Carver, James T. Brown

To learn more about The PM Channel, click here, or contact us on 01635 524 610 or email us at

Susanne Madsen on VIP for project management leadership

Susanne Madsen is a valued contributor to The PM Channel and we were pleased to  record her talk recently for the APM London Branch meeting.  In her full talk on The PM Channel Susanne introduced the concept of VIP.   In the clip below, Susanne Madsen outlines her talk for you.


As project managers, many of us work on projects that are both business critical and complex, and which have a global and cross-cultural element to them. To successfully implement such projects, we cannot rely on project management certification alone which predominantly makes us good at planning and tracking the task-related aspects of a project. In addition, we must be able to build effective relationships, clearly articulate the project’s vision and build a highly motivated team.  Susanne Madsen says to become a successful project leader, apply the principles of the VIP model.

Lead with Vision: The greater clarity you have with regards to the future you wish to create, the easier it will be for you to serve your customer, deliver the desired end-state and provide focus and direction to the team. When you understand and take ownership of the strategy for achieving a successful project outcome, you are able to inspire and motivate the team and make the day-to-day decisions necessary to reach that future. To lead with vision, you should:

  • Fully embrace the goals, objectives and plans of the project
  • Visualize what the end state of your project looks like
  • Challenge the status quo by finding more effective ways of achieving the vision
  • See it the way the end users and beneficiaries see it
  • Feel it, taste it, and smell it
  • Take ownership, not just for delivering project outputs and capabilities, but for the ultimate business benefits
  • Draw your team into the vision by illustrating how each person fits in and matters to the project’s overall execution

When you lead with vision you become more than a manager of people and resources. You become an inspiration to the team and a change agent who monitors and delivers the ultimate business benefits and value-added services to the client.

Work with Intent: Working as a project manager can be stressful and the demand for your time will always be greater than what you have available. Successful project leaders know how to get the most out of the day as they constantly assess where their time is best spent. When you work with intent you focus on those activities that yield the biggest result for your project and for your customer. You avoid the trap of being reactive and firefighting, and you become good at delegating tasks which someone else could do just as well as, or better than, yourself. To work smarter rather than harder, you should:

  • Focus your time on pro-active activities such as planning, risk mitigation, quality assurance, relationship building and stakeholder management
  • Avoid fire-fighting and time-wasting activities
  • Concentrate on the 20% of daily activities that contribute to 80% of your results
  • Delegate administrative tasks, low level planning, project reporting and documentation – for instance to your PMO
  • Train and grow other people so that you have someone to delegate to
  • Consistently ask yourself what the most important use of your time is right now
  • Focus on people as much as you focus on tasks

When you work with intent and focus you lay the foundation for being a high performer. You spend your time where it is most needed and you are more likely to avoid a crisis situation and having to firefight in the present moment.

Focus on People: Too many project managers hide behind their desk and mainly communicate through emails and status reports. To become a project leader you must connect with people and build strong relationships. This is true for your team members as well as your stakeholders. Your team members need to feel personally motivated and connected to the project’s vision in order to perform at their best. Likewise, the project stakeholders are a source of great support and can contribute tremendously towards a successful project outcome if managed correctly. To build strong relationships with people, you should:

  • Seek to understand what drives and motivates each of your team-members
  • Spend time with them on a one-2-one basis and really listen
  • Utilize people’s strengths and give them work which is interesting and purposeful
  • Identify the project’s most powerful and influential stakeholders
  • Engage them on a regular basis through short face-2- face sessions
  • Ask about their concerns, suggestions and understand their success criteria
  • Draw them into the project in a way which suits their interests, skills and preferences
  • Expand your comfort zone by interfacing directly with the sponsor

When you connect with people and find out what motivates each person do their job even better, you can align the individual’s aims and purposes with that of the project and create a truly motivated and highly effective team. Likewise, when you consider your stakeholders’ priorities, concerns, and success criteria, they will start to trust you and become allies who actively work to support you and your project.

Susanne Madsen is project and programme manager, mentor, and coach with over 15 years of experience in managing and rolling out major change programs. Susanne also holds several qualifications in the area of personal performance and corporate and executive coaching and is the author of The Project Management Coaching Workbook – Six Steps to Unleashing Your Potential.  To find out more about Susanne, please visit her website and blog at  You can also follow Susanne on Twitter: @SusanneMadsen.

Craig Stansfield with David Bright – Improving IBR outcomes through self-assessment

David was the Managing Director of BMT Hi-Q Sigma Ltd, a consultancy that delivers sustainable change and improvements in organisations’ control, assurance and governance of their projects and programmes through the implementation of systems engineering, project control and programme management solutions. Since April 2013 he became the Sector Director, Defence for BMT group with involvement in all BMT Companies that support the defence market.

Craig joined Thales Transportation Solutions in 2012 taking up the post of Project Controls Manager on the signalling upgrade programme to the London Underground’s Jubilee and Northern Lines. This comprises the design, installation and testing of Thales’s proven Seltrac Transmission Based Train Control (TBTC) system delivering improved reliability and increased train capacity through improved signalling.

See this and other talks from EVA18 Project Control on The PM Channel.

Graham Court with Graeme McNaught – Defending business performance by deploying earned value counter measures

Graham Court has held executive positions in Planning, Supply Chain, Project Management, IT, Finance and manufacturing in a range of industries including defence electronics, shipbuilding, commercial aircraft production, computer manufacture, and has consulted on Lean and MRP in a number of process and discrete manufacturing businesses.

Graeme has a background in electronic systems design and manufacture, technology sales, project management and project services. He has operated across many market sectors, including defence, aerospace, manufacturing, medical and nuclear.

Selex ES, a Finmeccanica company, is an international leader in electronic and information technologies for defence systems, aerospace, data, infrastructures, land security and protection and sustainable ’smart’ solutions. The company provides C4ISTAR systems (Command, Control, Communication, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance), integrated products and solutions for airborne, land and naval applications delivering mission critical systems for situational awareness, self-protection and surveillance based on proprietary radar and electro-optic sensors, avionics, electronic warfare, communication, space sensors and UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) solutions. From the design, development and production of state-of-the-art equipment, software and systems to through life support, Selex ES partners with its customers to deliver the information superiority required to act decisively, complete missions and maintain security and protection for operational effectiveness.

See this and other talks from EVA18 Project Control on The PM Channel.

Lee McDonagh – The LOCOG vision for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic games

The LOCOG vision for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games was to ‘inspire a generation’. This was interpreted into a vision by the ODA ‘to deliver an Olympic Park and all the venues on time, within an agreed budget and to specification, minimising the call on public funds and providing for a sustainable legacy’. Now working on the Legacy project transforming the Olympic Park into Queen Elizabeth Park, Lee McDonagh, Associate Director at Mace looks at how Mace is carrying this vision forward, the impact to the project is having on Stratford and East London as well as how the project has challenged and changed the perceptions of UK construction industry; its ability to deliver, successfully, large scale international infrastructure projects.

Lee has over 20 years of experience in the construction industry working on projects as diverse as the widening of the M25, the construction of a Jubilee Line station, the extension of an airport terminal and the delivery on the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. His responsibilities has included roles as a site engineer, structural engineer and planner and he is currently leading the project controls team for the London Legacy Development Committee where Mace is leading the legacy transformation of the Olympic Park into the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

See this and other talks from EVA18 Project Control on The PM Channel.