Project and Portfolio Management Experts

Jamal Moustafaev

Jamal is an author of two books dedicated to
project, portfolio and scope management:

Before you go any further, let us conduct a quick survey. Below you will find ten symptoms of a company that is in dire need of project management and/or project portfolio management. Go ahead, read through the list and count how many of these characteristics can be attributed to your organization:

  1. Unexpected issues and problems arise in the middle of projects
  2. Communications seem to be ad-hoc; too often important stakeholders are not informed about key decisions
  3. Project's requirements are never clearly defined
  4. Project managers and functional managers (department directors and managers) constantly fight over resources.
  5. Priorities of the projects initiated by the executives constantly change, resulting in quick resource reassignments.
  6. There is a chronic shortage of resources at the organization. Employees are constantly complaining about being overworked, while the managers insist that they must roll up their sleeves and work harder
  7. Projects are frequently late and/or over budget and/or do not deliver the full scope promised and the quality of the project product is low
  8. Even if the strategic idea is implemented, the company sometimes fails to achieve the expected improvement or fails to receive any value from the said project at all
  9. The strategic plan – even if the company has one - is presented as a list of projects, but the cause-effect logic tying those initiatives to the company’s mission, goals and the strategy is absent
  10. The list of company projects is not prioritized. Therefore it is assumed that all of these initiatives must be started and implemented more or less simultaneously

Did you count more than five symptoms present at your company? We can help! We offer project management, project portfolio management consulting and training services to help get your business back on track.

Please contact me directly via email at jamal@thinktankconsulting.ca or by phone +1-778-995-4396.

I look forward to hearing from you.

 

Jamal Moustafaev, MBA, PMP

President & CEO

Thinktank Consulting, Inc.

Please share, your support is appreciated.

Infographic - Project Portfolio Management Model - Chemical Products Company

 

Infographic - PPM Model - Chemical Products_1.png

About the Author

Jamal Moustafaev, MBA, PMP – president and founder of Thinktank Consulting is an internationally acclaimed expert and speaker in the areas of project/portfolio management, scope definition, process improvement and corporate training. Jamal Moustafaev has done work for private-sector companies and government organizations in Canada, US, Asia, Europe and Middle East.  Read Jamal’s Blog @ www.thinktankconsulting.ca

Jamal is an author of two very popular books: Delivering Exceptional Project Results: A Practical Guide to Project Selection, Scoping, Estimation and Management and Project Scope Management: A Practical Guide to Requirements for Engineering, Product, Construction, IT and Enterprise Projects.

Please share, your support is appreciated.

Infographic - Project Portfolio Management Model - Construction Materials Manufacturer

 

Infographic - PPM Model - Construction Materials Manufacturer.png

About the Author

Jamal Moustafaev, MBA, PMP – president and founder of Thinktank Consulting is an internationally acclaimed expert and speaker in the areas of project/portfolio management, scope definition, process improvement and corporate training. Jamal Moustafaev has done work for private-sector companies and government organizations in Canada, US, Asia, Europe and Middle East.  Read Jamal’s Blog @ www.thinktankconsulting.ca

Jamal is an author of two very popular books: Delivering Exceptional Project Results: A Practical Guide to Project Selection, Scoping, Estimation and Management and Project Scope Management: A Practical Guide to Requirements for Engineering, Product, Construction, IT and Enterprise Projects.

Please share, your support is appreciated.

Article - Should Project Portfolio Models Be Complicated?

 

Let us conduct a psychological experiment. Which formula do you think will yield a more precise and accurate result:

formula1.JPG

or

formula2.JPG

I guarantee that the majority of the readers will select the second formula as the one that would provide the best result. Unfortunately nothing can be further from the truth because any formula is as good as the data going into it. Some of you may have heard the following expression used by statisticians:

Garbage in, garbage out

It basically means that, no matter how complicated the formula is, if you “infuse” it with inaccurate data, the model will produce an inaccurate answer. Having said that take a closer look at the formulas above: the first model only has two ingredients, while the second one has multiple variables. Hence with a larger number of variables we end up with more room for estimation errors.

Why did I start this article with such a strange example? I have recently taught a project portfolio management course in London, UK and the following conversation took place between a Portfolio Manager of a large utility company and your humble servant:

PM: Oh, our executives will never sign up for PPM. We tried it before and it didn’t work

Me: Why didn’t it work?

PM: Well take a look here … (proceeds to show me a very complicated spreadsheet that incorporates not one, not two, but three scoring models for different types of projects at the same company. In order to assess the project proposal one has to answer several dozen questions by selecting appropriate choices from the dropdown menus. Once the choices are made, the spreadsheet “tells” you which scoring model to use. The models are also far from simple; close to a dozen scoring categories with five different potential scores for each variable …)

Me: So, did you use that model?

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Infographic - Project Portfolio Management Model - Medical Devices Manufacturer

 

Infographic - PPM Model - Medical Devices.png

 

About the Author

Jamal Moustafaev, MBA, PMP – president and founder of Thinktank Consulting is an internationally acclaimed expert and speaker in the areas of project/portfolio management, scope definition, process improvement and corporate training. Jamal Moustafaev has done work for private-sector companies and government organizations in Canada, US, Asia, Europe and Middle East.  Read Jamal’s Blog @ www.thinktankconsulting.ca

Jamal is an author of two very popular books: Delivering Exceptional Project Results: A Practical Guide to Project Selection, Scoping, Estimation and Management and Project Scope Management: A Practical Guide to Requirements for Engineering, Product, Construction, IT and Enterprise Projects.

Please share, your support is appreciated.

Infographic - Project Portfolio Management Model - Electronics Product Company

 

 

Infographic - Project Portfolio Management Model - Electronics Product Company

 

About the Author

Jamal Moustafaev, MBA, PMP – president and founder of Thinktank Consulting is an internationally acclaimed expert and speaker in the areas of project/portfolio management, scope definition, process improvement and corporate training. Jamal Moustafaev has done work for private-sector companies and government organizations in Canada, US, Asia, Europe and Middle East.  Read Jamal’s Blog @ www.thinktankconsulting.ca

Jamal is an author of two very popular books: Delivering Exceptional Project Results: A Practical Guide to Project Selection, Scoping, Estimation and Management and Project Scope Management: A Practical Guide to Requirements for Engineering, Product, Construction, IT and Enterprise Projects.

Please share, your support is appreciated.

Case Study - Shah Deniz 2 - Megaprojects Can Be Successful After All!

 

Very proud to have participated on this project as a project management consultant!

Background

Shah Deniz (The King of the Sea) gas field is the largest natural gas field in Azerbaijan. It is situated in the South Caspian Sea, off the coast of Azerbaijan, approximately 70 kilometres (43 mi) southeast of Baku, at a depth of 600 metres (2,000 ft). The field covers approximately 860 square kilometres (330 sq mi). The Shah Deniz gas and condensate field was discovered in 1999. Stretching out over 140 square kilometres, the reservoir is similar in size and shape to Manhattan Island.

Shah Deniz 1

Stage One development of the Shah Deniz gas field started production in 2006, with a capacity of 9bcma of gas and roughly 55,000 daily barrels of condensate. The capital expenditure on Shah Deniz 1 to date is estimated to be $6bn. As of 2013, the field has produced 47.3 billion standard cubic metres (1,671 billion standard cubic feet) of gas and 99.5 million barrels of condensate.

Shah Deniz 2

Shah Deniz-2 discussions started in 2008 with the main discussion topic being the selection of transportation routes for additional gas volumes. Five-year-long intense negotiations finalized with signing of Final Investment Decision (FID) on 17 December 2013 in Baku, Azerbaijan.

Shah Deniz platform - Photo Shahin Abasaliyev - Statoil_0.jpg

Nine companies agreed to sign a gas sales agreement (GSA) with the consortium:

  • Axpo Trading AG
  • Bulgargaz EAD (Bulgaria)
  • DEPA Public Gas Corporation of Greece S.A. (Greece)
  • Enel Trade SpA (Italy)
  • E.ON Global Commodities SE (Germany)
  • Gas Natural Aprovisionamientos SDG SA (Spain)
  • GDF SUEZ S.A. (France)
  • Hera Trading srl (Italy)
  • Shell Energy Europe Limited (UK)

Out of total 10 bcm intended for Europe, 1 bcm will go to Bulgaria and Greece and the rest will go to buyers in other countries, mainly Italy.

 

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Found on the Web - Infographic: Project Management's Impact on Business

 

Some interesting facts:

On Target        

  • 89% of projects at high-performing organizations meet original goals and business intent
  • 34% of projects at low-performing organizations meet original goals and business intent

Building Blocks

  • 71% of projects meet original goals and business intent at organizations that recognize the importance of project management
  • Unfortunately only 38% of organizations place a high priority on creating a project management culture

Down the Drain

  • US$122 million lost for every US$1 billion invested in projects due to poor performance
  • That is a 12% increase from 2015

Project management and Business1.jpeg

PMO

  • Only 49% of organizations have EPMO
  • Of those only 44% are highly aligned with their company strategies (22% of all organizations)
    • They complete 27% more projects successfully
    • 42% fewer projects have scope creep

Project management and Business2.jpeg

About the Author

Jamal Moustafaev, MBA, PMP – president and founder of Thinktank Consulting is an internationally acclaimed expert and speaker in the areas of project/portfolio management, scope definition, process improvement and corporate training. Jamal Moustafaev has done work for private-sector companies and government organizations in Canada, US, Asia, Europe and Middle East.  Read Jamal’s Blog @ www.thinktankconsulting.ca

Please share, your support is appreciated.

Article - How to Determine Resource Pool Available for Your Project Portfolio?

 

Very frequently when teaching my Project Portfolio Management Masterclass I get asked the following question:

One of our major challenges is assessing the size of our resource pool.  No matter how meticulous our calculations are, we constantly end up with way more projects than we can handle! Sometimes we are talking orders-of-magnitude errors in estimation!

So, here is an example of a "back of the envelope" calculation of total project resources bucket at a company that has proven to be extremely robust.

Imagine that there are 250 employees working at the head office. It has been estimated via survey or questionnaires that approximately 30% of their time is spent on project work and 70% on business as usual, i.e. normal daily non-project tasks. Based on that information we can assess the size of the total project resource bucket at the company:

Total number of people at the head office = 250 people

Total number of working months in a year = 10  minus two months for vacation, holidays and sick days)

Percentage of time spent on projects = 30% (estimated based on surveys)

Thus:

Total Project Resource Pool = 250 people X 10 months X 0.30 = 750 person-months

Therefore the total project human resources available for the entire portfolio are 750 person-months. Using this figure and knowing that there are 12 months in a year we can calculate the approximate resource pipeline throughput at the company as follows:

Project Pipeline Capacity = Total Project Resources/Number of Months in a Year = 750 person-months/12 months = 62.5 person-months/month

 

In other words the total project resource requirements at the organization should not exceed 62.5 person-months in any given month.

So, here is my traditional multiple-choice question for you:

How do you measure your portfolio resource pool?

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News - London, UK Trip - Project Portfolio Management Masterclass

 

Travelling to London, UK for my traditional Spring Project Portfolio Management Masterclass via Marcus Evans.

About the Author

Jamal Moustafaev, MBA, PMP – president and founder of Thinktank Consulting is an internationally acclaimed expert and speaker in the areas of project/portfolio management, scope definition, process improvement and corporate training. Jamal Moustafaev has done work for private-sector companies and government organizations in Canada, US, Asia, Europe and Middle East.  Read Jamal’s Blog @ www.thinktankconsulting.ca

Jamal is an author of two very popular books: Delivering Exceptional Project Results: A Practical Guide to Project Selection, Scoping, Estimation and Management and Project Scope Management: A Practical Guide to Requirements for Engineering, Product, Construction, IT and Enterprise Projects.

Please share, your support is appreciated.