Project Heuristics in Dealing With Complexity

Mar 26

Presented by Collin Smith
Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, ICCPM

The practice of project management involves two different but complimentary factors namely;  rational factors (structure and administration) which focuses on the application of tools and techniques using frameworks and methodologies, and the socio-behavioural factors which entails how people behave and interact in the context of the project and its environment.  The difference between the two is that the rational factors represents how projects should be managed from an administrative perspective, whereas the socio-behavioural factors represents how people interact and how project managers make decisions.   In many failed projects, failure can be traced back to poor decisions rather than poor application of project management tools and techniques.  Project heuristics looks at mental models (mental short-cuts), good and bad, and cognitive biases that sometimes result in errors of judgement and consequently decision making based on perceptions.  An understanding of project heuristics aids in dealing with complexity.   

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Collin Smith Collin joined ICCPM as Deputy CEO in March 2017 and was appointed Managing Director and CEO on 1 June 2018 (acting CEO from February -May 2018). Collin has over 24 years of commercial and management experience in a variety of senior roles across various industry sectors.  Before moving to Australia, Collin spent 8 years as a Board Director and Principal Consultant for a boutique business transformation management consultancy in South Africa with a particular focus on strategy development and change management.  Collin’s Australian experience includes working for Queensland University of Technology where his responsibilities included the program management of QUT’s Executive MBA in Complex Project Leadership in Canberra as well as a series of customised customer specific and public executive education courses.  More recently he was a Principal Consultant and business transformation practice lead for a local Canberra based consulting firm before joining ICCPM.

Collin Smith

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