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  1. 1. ~ 1 ~ s Mantra for Entrepreneurial Project Management Suhail Qadir Project Manager J&k pcc ltd
  2. 2. ~ 2 ~ Title of the paper: Entrepreneurial Approach , befitting Project Management& selective PM methodology as catalyst for success at Projects & Business Growth Theme : A case Study- Mapping Failures and Success While “Driving as an entrepreneur through inspiring Stakeholder Management ,Business Growth ,Customer relations and Performing as a leader with a purpose” Key Words : Entrepreneurship Abstract : Project Management Frame work Project Management Methodology Sucessful Project Business Growth A Case study - Mapping Failure & Succes s While “Driving as an Entrepreneur through ins piring Stakeholder Management, Business Growth, Customer Relations and performing as a Leader with a Purpos e” Name of the Project : 200 Bed Additional Ward Block at LD Hospital Srinagar. Project Address : Srinagar, J&K-India. Service Provider : J&K PCC Ltd – A Public Sector Undertaking-J&K Govt Client : Health & Medical Education Deptt ; Govt; of J&K Budget : INR 31.07 Crore Duration : 48 Months Status : Project Completion 99%. (40% Handed over& operational). Presentation Flow ( in a stage gate Model): Idea Feasibility, Pre- Launch, Post-Launch, Project Definition -Project Development, Project Implementation, Commissioning & Testing, Handover & Closing. What shall I bring out in the case study presentation? • Dis connect between End us ers/Sponsors/Service Providers / SMEs - The idea generators & entrepreneurs as vacuum fillers. • Change through integrated change control process - Missing change control Boards/ Adhoc decisions for changes - a Challenge to Entrepreneurial functioning • Budget overruns –Budget Revisions /Lop sided Project Definition/Customer relationship dilution/ Loss of business • Indifference of End Us ers availing the facility for the intended purpos e -various reasons -entrepreneurship killers • Brown Field Project-Lack of Vision and absence of Master Plan for the Project campus - Potential Risk for the entrepreneur • Bringing in top Management through motivation & inform ational Feedback from Project Manager - The Triggers for a Leader with a Purpose . • Les s ons Learnt to drive as entrepreneur for bus ines s growth through leadership with purpos e.
  3. 3. ~ 3 ~ Table of Contents i Cover Page Page 1 ii TOC Page 2 1. Introduction Page 3 2. Entrepreneurship Explained Page 4 3. Project Management Frame Work Page 4 4. Project Management Methodology Page 5 5.Case Study – features, Project Backgrounder & Constraints Page 5-6 6. Disconnect between Sponsors/End users/ Service providers/SMEs Page 6-7 7. Missing Change Control Boards (CCB) Page 7 8. Lopsided Budgets due to inadequate Project Definition Page 7 9. Indifference of End Users availing the Project on completion Page 8 10. Brown Field Project – A Challenge Page 8 11. Role of Top Management, their non cooperation as triggers for Leadership with a purpose Page 8 12. Conclusion and Lessons Learnt Page 9
  4. 4. ~ 4 ~ INTRODUCTION In modern day project Management what could be the role of entrepreneurship? To understand the question and finally to come up with a satisfactory answer it becomes imperative that we understand the meaning and definition of Entrepreneurship and Project Management each as standalone concepts. And then try to find the commonalities between them. This will help us in integrating these two distinct yet converging thought processes and when used in tandem , whether these make an impact on the business outcome and growth vis-a-vis Project in hand. In the process we might visualize an end to end progress path of a Project while achieving Project objectives with optimal investment of resources that yield high ROI, with minimal disturbance to Nature’s Environmental balance. Traditionally we have been focusing on processes and knowledge Areas without any significant attention to Entrepreneurial functioning coupled with using a selective methodology. Now we are well aware that Entrepreneurship, Project Management and PM methodology are the Buzz Words of present Century . So we need to have an in depth understanding of these concepts that together make our Project Management implementation more business oriented, leaner and therefore more successful For purpose of analysis, a straight and somewhat simplified definition of Entrepreneurship is ‘a person’s strong inclination to search ,identify and own new ideas, he or she being capable of accepting or rejecting these ideas and developing the accepted ideas that seem to carry ‘innovative tags and value’. It might further mean adapting the selected ideas for real world project work conducting feasibility study, to conclude that these projects fulfill business needs for self, social and community development, while identifying , calculating & taking Risks, threats and opportunity alike. Finally, it would include putting in efforts to Market either a product, result or service , to earn revenue and then repeat this process to recycle the earned revenue through more innovation, modification and newer Technology. On the other hand Project Management Framework can be explained as identification and definition of processes, tools and techniques across various knowledge areas , knit together to convert the abstract concepts (that are fuel for Entrepreneurship) into Physical activity for business gains and Project Outcome ,based on highly organized efforts involving various stakeholders through use of resources, while considering Various Environmental organizational factors .From these definitions we can equate the two thought processes i.e Entrepreneurship and Project Management Frame work with the ‘ Flesh and skeleton in a Human Body. Add to these the thought process i.e Project Management Methodology that acts like a Soul in Human Body. The three concepts make it a perfect and useful Combination , capable of delivering the result, service or a product with greater efficiency and high Business Value. Entrepreneurship Project Management Framework Methodology Fig 1. Self Explanatory .( Conceived by this Author) Assured success in b business
  5. 5. ~ 5 ~ Entrepreneurship Explained Expanding on our earlier definition of Entrepreneurial endeavor we will now make an effort to understand its other dimensions. Entrepreneurship can be defined as a process by which an entrepreneur can identify an opportunity and transform such idea into a purposeful activity that might involve business case that ultimately culminates into a product, result or service ,by fair exploitation of resources ,through an efficient financial management ,in the process taking up challenges & risks by embracing change and innovation- as a Change Leader. Entrepreneurs are a motivated lot who take ownership of work they undertake and display Resilience, leadership quality, tolerance to risks and commitment to offer variety in their products for their logical goal of achieving repetitive success in their Business ventures. Some of the primary drivers for Growth of entrepreneurship in recent times are: a)Knowledge Explosion b) Deregulation and de Licensing of business environment c) Rapid Technological innovation d) Dissatisfaction with traditional Job oriented careers. e) State Sponsorship and Patronage for self employment f) Ever increasing Consumer culture To sum up we can say that the attributes an entrepreneur must possess include but are not limited to: a) Capability to recognize opportunity ,b) Motivation to sustain business despite temporary failures due to unfavorable environment and other Risks. c)Ability to muster finance and resources d) Leadership e) Ability to adapt to different situations f) Flexibility g) Motivation to Excel . Project Management Frame work There is a famous Proverb and I call it Project Management proverb- it goes like “All work is Project”. So ,the moment we think of work , we have a project in hand. Projects by virtue of their unique nature offer little or no options . So we need to manage them. Thus comes into play the Project Management and no sooner an idea is selected by an entrepreneur , he or she may require to launch it for definition ,development ,implementation and finally testing ,commissioning ,handover and closing. This is where the Project Management comes in. For successfully completing the Project for its desired goals and objectives an entrepreneur must make an efficient use of Project Management principles . Utilization of Project Management knowledge, that includes processes ,tools .Techniques and even methodologies becomes, a must have baggage for an entrepreneur. I would suggest, that an entrepreneur must not only be familiar with Project Management processes ,tools techniques and their application, but should attain sufficient expertise by formally learning project Management Frame work . This also holds true when applied vice versa . When a Project Management Practitioner acts as an entrepreneur he or she is likely to achieve Project Accomplishment with excellence. A Project Manager slipping into the shoes of owner and managing the project exactly the same way as an entrepreneur has 50% more chances of doing project successfully . This also means a Project Manager treated by Employer Organizations as owner of that project ,can show fantastic results on ground as all of his/her entrepreneurship qualities might come to fore . How to evolve that system is presently beyond the scope of this paper. Project Management framework and Entrepreneurship together lead the path to convert a business venture into a success story.
  6. 6. ~ 6 ~ Project Management Methodology Project Management Frame work that encompasses Knowledge areas and Process groups as laid down in PMI Standards - the latest among the series being PMBoK Guide Vth Edition and other practice standard - provide clear ,concise and detailed guidelines for Managing our projects in an efficient and standardized manner. Yet we may face difficulties in absence of a PM methodology. Waterfall , Stage Gate and Agile are but a few examples of PM Methodologies in vogue. An entrepreneur who is to achieve excellence in his ‘projects and business’, must be familiar with the methodologies so that he /she may adhere to these from idea stage right through to project closing ,thereby watching over health and status of the Project, continuation or termination of a project throughout its life cycle and exercise control at various stages of business. A Stage Gate methodology might be the one point solution, to have an end to end overview of various stages of project Life cycle. This brings us to our third essential component i.e’ Project Management Methodology’ that goes into making a Project & business venture a success. The stage gate methodology ,makes a complete overview of the Project from its Pre-Launch stage that involves the idea ,feasibility study , Project definition to post launch stage through Project Development, implementation ,Testing /Commissioning /operational Phase ,acceptance, Handover and Closing .Through various stage gates we can control the Projects while determining their business viability and need to terminate or continue same. Fig 2. Customizable and Adaptable Methodology for Project Management ( Courtesy Mounir A. Ajam – Author of Book ‘Project Management: the CAM2P Model’. Note: The Diagram has been reproduced from the above mentioned book with due permission from the Author with the intention to give readers an introduction to the Stage Gate Model discussed in this paper. Further reading is, however, suggested for better understanding of the Model. The diagram is only an adaptation of the Original diagram in the book, redrawn by this Author. Case Study-features, Project Backgrounder & Constraints
  7. 7. ~ 7 ~ This case study pertains to a Building Construction Project undertaken to Augment the existing facility of a Maternity Hospital by 200 Bed capacity wards, including OPD . The Client was “ Health and Medical Education Deptt under State Government” and Project was sponsored by state Government. The End Users would be the medical staff including doctors , administrative personnel of existing Local Govt Hospital and the beneficiaries i.e general Public falling within the catchment area. The Project was budgeted for INR 31.05 Crore( USD 5.175 M ) to be completed within 48 Months. The business goals of sponsors were to ensure an additional Ward facility to meet the increase in demand of patients. The business goal of Service Providers was to render Quality deliverables while maintaining Market Reputation ,going strictly by ‘Basic Requirements’ and to present a reasonable budget with inbuilt profit percentage and contingencies . On financial front, the contract between Sponsors and Service Providers was the one under state Govt statutes that authorized the service provider organization as the favored contractor for EPC Project . The Project Charter better known by the name of Accord of Administrative Approval or AAA authorized service providers to initiate Project. Usually it is delayed yet the project gets initiated! The funding came from State Govt; original source being Central Government through annual Plan Outlay prioritized by Planning Commission of India. Disconnect between End Users/Sponsors/Service Providers/SMEs Those who have been actively into Project Management Practice are aware of contribution of stake holder Management in Project Success. The latest PMBoK Guide Vth Edition has now incorporated Stake Holder Management as an independent Knowledge area. Project Management outcome is dependent on the management of stake holder expectations through application of various processes and using interpersonal skills to leverage benefits of these processes. An entrepreneurial Drive was lunched to inspire stake holders Management through adequate contact and meetings between Sponsors, End Users and Top Management of service Providers and SMEs. Interpersonal skills led to participation of key stakeholders i.e Sponsors and End Users through collaborative Leadership . But Organizational Environmental factors that included change of Guard at political Executive level and non participation of End User Expert staff , were dampening the entrepreneurial efforts, such factors being beyond the control of a Project Manager, which proved spoil sport .Only partial Success could be achieved to knit and convince the stake holders together for a common goal. Adequate emphasis on making good use of PM process ‘Collect Requirements’ and an entrepreneurial drive to elicit basic requirements from End users, not documented earlier, was launched. Tools & techniques like Interviews, focused workshops, Questionare and surveys were employed a fresh. The idea generators ,in this case grass root level end users including Theatre Supervisors and Lab Assistants, were revisited for discussion. This helped in getting to know some essential basic requirements. The change requests were processed for approval .Revision in scope , its fallout on Budget and time lines were analyzed and communicated to stakeholders. Sponsors, as an after thought, had pushed for a change request to incorporate the Operation Theatres (OTs), but accompanying requirement for adequate space for Labor Room and allied facilities like Central sterilization etc. were ignored. Despite adequate response from service providers for incorporating state of art OTs ,the lack of a labor room and other allied services posed challenge due to space constraint ,resulting in a stale mate with sponsors and end users .The BRD
  8. 8. ~ 8 ~ was depicting the Project as ‘ Additional Ward facility’. Yet Change requests had been just pushed through by sponsors. Despite their hard posturing , the change in their attitude was brought about through motivation and consistent logical stand taken by the Project Manager coupled with a sustained dialogue. Adequate attention to Quality of the Deliverables through Quality Assurance and Quality Control helped minimize loss of business and strengthening the Customer(End User in this Case) relationship . As is customary in Govt Sponsored Projects the pre-launch stage, gets feeble attention and is completely handled by Sponsors that may include the idea , need & feasibility study ,value engineering alternative identification and like. Often the pre launch stage remains invisible to Service providers and Project Managers who join very late. This situation was handled by leveraging the triple pronged strategy of making entrepreneurial efforts, simultaneously following Project management framework and adhering to stage gate methodology. The entrepreneurial Initiative to make a connect between Post Launch and pre launch Project stages proved very helpful . As the Project Manager was motivation to take ownership of the Project and its business outcome , an effort towards bringing in the idea generators was put in . Thus the vacuum created by differing perspectives about the Scope of the Project was filled by making frequent efforts to make the sponsors and end users realize that scope had been defined based on requirements framed by idea generators who had been at helm earlier . Missing Change Control Board (CCB) One of the biggest worries of Project Manager was to avoid scope creep . The lack of understanding among the Key End Users to realize that increasing the Scope of work has a direct bearing on the Budget of the Project was a matter of concern. There were always random change requests from Sponsors and End Users side . This was happening because End users would not give credence to BRD and Project Charter and since no formal Change Control board was constituted .Confrontation was rampant while processing of the Change Requests . Any rejection of change request ,( Most of the time a change request was from Minister or Top Bureaucrat) would be treated with displeasure. This would result in a host of issues and bad will .The Project Manager who had to look after the Budget and deliver the Project with requisite Quality parameters for a defined Scope ,this was a nightmare. However, as an entrepreneur the Project Manager ,evolved ‘ tactical deterrent’ ,and it was communicated to Sponsors and End Users ,that any Change request from them must be promoted in a written form with the initiators name, designation and rank in Hierarchy registered on it . The change requests were processed for their impact on Budget, Quality and Time lines and returned with comments . This was in consonance with the Government Rules and regulations and was not contradicting any standing orders. This served t he purpose in the sense that vague and unnecessary Change requests fraught with Budgetary pressures and with least benefits, were filtered and only a few valid Change requests got approved and implemented . Lop sided Budgets due to inadequate Project Definition One of the essential characteristics of an entrepreneur is to revisit the Budget of a Project at the Project Development stage . While defining a Project there can be certain missing features that do not get enlisted in time . Thus the process of Scope Definition needs to be revisited . A project Manager in such projects is supposed to act as an owner of the project who bothers about Budget overrun and the funds. The funds being drawn from tax payers money. However, under- Budgeted Projections would be even greater embarrassment as neither the Scope nor the Quality parameters would be met. It was in this context that the scope and quality parameters were revisited during the definition and Project Development stages but prior to implementation stage. In this case it turned up that the Budget forwarded earlier was not adequate to achieve the required deliverables as per scope and specifications. The Cost Estimates were got checked vis-à-vis the scope and specifications and it revealed that the Project had
  9. 9. ~ 9 ~ been grossly underestimated by almost 30% . The Revised Estimates were framed and forwarded for verification and Approval . Revised Cost offer was submitted to Sponsors with Justification notes and Reasons . The same was accorded the approval and the Project was comfortably completed within the Budget. But this required a lot of discussions, explanatory presentations and Motivation that was achieved through Entrepreneurial efforts . Indifference of End Users availing the Project on Completion At the completion of the Project there was a new development and signals were emitting from end user side that they may not accept and operate the new facility . At the outset it was rumored that the facility was not to standard and there were lacunae . However, end users would avoid direct discussions .Now in order to resolve this issue , an Entrepreneurial approach was taken . Instead of confronting the End users it was decided to evaluate and ponder over other reasons that would be compelling factors for them to avoid using the facility. After a long deliberation it turned out that the End users had failed to arrange and train the necessary staff needed to run this additional facility which is usually a phenomenon with Government work culture in Third world. They had ,therefore , diplomatically avoided to take up the facility but in order to hide this they were trying to pass the buck . Time and again they were asked to point out the lacunae . Thus all the good work done would have been just rubbished off by the End users. This was killing development . When the business needs and objectives of the Project were about to be realized the end users were playing the role of Entrepreneurship killers .This is why a Project Manager working with the zeal of an entrepreneur, needs to be vigilant for such challenges and try to dig deeper into issues and go for root cause analysis to defend the business interests and benefits of a Project making good use of PM Processes. Brown Field Project- A challenge In case of Brown Field Projects a Project Manager who takes ownership of the Project has to be ready to come up with some extra efforts and Budget provisions. Such situation itself indicates that the Budgets have to be upgraded for Demolition works , Cost of Delayed work , Problematic Work Environment, space constraints and its consequences for scope and timelines. A bunch of new and unique stakeholder comes up in case of Brown field Projects which puts the Leadership skills, risk management and inter-personal skills of an entrepreneur to test . The progress of work becomes a function of space availability and Human interference . Extra Project Management effort is needed to overcome the consequences. The extra burden on resources throws yet another challenge. So, while delivering a Project ,it is always prudent to keep Contingencies reserves for Brown Field Projects and Plan accordingly. Role of Top Management , their non co-operation as triggers for Leader with a purpose Normally , Top Management is supposed to guide , Mentor , Coach ,help and insulate the Project Manager at Govt Sponsored Projects . But if this is not forthcoming , the PM might face lots of inconvenient behavior from Sponsors and End users side especially when PMOs are not in Place. This brings extra pressure on an Entrepreneur cum Project Manager But in an entrepreneurial atmosphere and when PM has resolved to act as an Owner of the Project , it automatically triggers an inspirational phenomenon. Thus an entrepreneur cum Project Manager finds himself in the shoes of Top Management and begins to feel and assume a purpose in all his leadership roles . He/she instead of getting bogged down ,starts behaving as a leader with purpose. And this inspires him or her to take some decisions that have risk involved with them . Thus in this Project , some decisions like choice of Material in finishing
  10. 10. ~ 10 ~ works that would enhance the image ,credibility and innovative approach of the Service Providers were taken. Some risks were taken to add value to Products ---the hall mark of an entrepreneur. But fair amount of technical evaluation was implemented and the innovation and choice of material was preceded with lots of technical evaluation . Decisions to be taken for adding value to the Products of the Project were taken in consultation with the Team and external Consultants –by instilling in them confidence for introducing some innovations. Barring little criticism from a few quarters ,the decisions proved to be worth and appreciation came from various quarters when the Value added product i.e Building structure came up aesthetically better and low on maintenance cost. Conclusion and Lessons Learnt At the end and in light of above situational scenarios we conclude that entrepreneurial spirit can be infused into Projects for achieving business goals and self growth . Project Management and entrepreneurship being stand alone thought processes, yet these can be integrated and practiced together to achieve better business results and more successful Projects. An Entrepreneur and a Project Manager are flip sides of same coin with PM Methodology as the philosophy behind both. The lessons learnt at the case study are: 1. Entrepreneurship does not warrant success as a standalone Concept. 2. Project Management Frame work complements Entrepreneurship. 3. Stage Gate Methodology helps boost the Entrepreneurship at Projects and therefore at Business 4. Entrepreneurs should be aware of Entrepreneurship killers and devise methods to neutralize them 5. Brown Field Projects taken up by Entrepreneurs need additional Planning & Risk Management 6. In order to avail the benefits of Stake holder management Entrepreneurs should develop relevant Inter personal skills and understand the big picture 7. Entrepreneurs being change leaders they must follow Integrated Change Control process at their Projects. 8. The entrepreneurs need to develop their leadership attributes to take over reins in times of crisis. 9. Entrepreneurs must not hesitate to take formal training in Project Management Frame work and PM methodologies as per their needs. 10. Nothing in business ventures needs to be left to chance but everything needs to be controlled. 11. The Project Managers at Projects in organizations should be recognized as Entrepreneurs who act as owners of the Project and the Business goals involved with these.