This Guest paper was submitted for publication and is copyright to authors: Mark A. Seely and L. Quang P. Duong
© 2016.
Published here January 2017

Editor's Note & Abstract | Table of Contents: When It Is Not Project Management 
Chapter 1: Introduction | What Does It Provide? | PART 2

Mark A. Seely, PMP, PEng, MBA is President of Analysis of Analysis Introspectus Ltd. (AOAI). AOAI provides analyses of how we analyze – from conventions in our geopolitical perspective, to paradigms in corporate management, to individual behaviour. The AOAI compendium on analysis of analysis is "the greenFields Model"© available for reference at www.AOAI.ca. It builds on The Dynamic Baseline Model,[0] a concept adopted by the Treasury Board of Canada for its project management policy, and implemented at Public Works, and Procurement Services Canada. It has also been taught in the University of Ottawa MBA program where Mark is on the Educator's Honour Roll. Mark can be reached at mark.seely@AOAI.ca

Editor's Note

The following series of guest papers presents an in-depth study of decision-making analysis in today's business information world. Societies, businesses and individuals, project managers in particular, make important decisions based on analyses from sources they trust, such as academia, professional organizations, government sources and so on. Putting the right plan into motion depends upon the integrity of these sources — their accuracy, objectivity and sufficiency.

In the past, our trust in these institutions was complete — with a virtual monopoly on information, we didn't have much choice. Our individual and professional analytic research amounted to reviewing trusted publications, those editorially controlled, citing references for them, and, on the strength of their reputation, forming our argumentation.

Now, however, the Internet has forever changed our way of life, our manner of thinking and our analytic opportunity. Information sources are available from all walks of life, all societies, internationally, that compete with the former monopoly. We thus confront the dichotomy between the traditionally sanctioned closed-system sources and the new open-system alternative sources. The open system, of course, poses a new problem and requires a different approach to analytic navigation, one that enables discretion between analytic fact and analytic fiction. Given the diversity of views available, that now requires sound analytic practice.

Our author, Mark Seely, through AOAI Ltd., promotes professionalism in analytics by providing discussions, tools and frameworks that draw a distinction between reasonable analytics and facsimiles thereof. Over the next several months, he will discuss the findings. This series of papers are abstracted from an unpublished manuscript[1] and are presented on this web site with the author's permission.[2]

Abstract

This book approaches a decades old paradox in project management — we see what we want to see, we manage the part we care to see, we manage it as we care to manage it. For complex initiatives, the convenience of the tool of choice may be contributing to our evasion of our management responsibility.

With classical project management practices, having learned the tools, we then spent a lot of time and effort trying to get reality to conform to that tool. Classical project management practices are readily understandable — it is everything — soothing, comforting — an organizing archetype that seemingly cuts through complexity like a knife. It's also a major cottage industry — selling the dream is a huge business unto itself with internationally positioned consulting firms. However, as complex initiatives continue to fail, could it be that the appeal of the tool may be distracting us from the greater picture?

Classical project management practices treat the circumstance of overwhelming detail in the problem at hand. They successfully disintegrate the situation to a more readily manageable construct. However, highly complex projects entail dynamics — a shifting context and, moreover, a game that changes as you play, and depends on how you play.

The Dynamic Baseline Model (DBM)[3] is used to situate the issue of detail, explore the dynamics at play and characterize the nature of the dynamics. In this regard, the DBM identifies five levels of complexity as the basis for solution optimization and performance anticipation.

The DBM has been the subject of lectures across Canada over the past decade. An article, "The Dynamic Baseline Model for Project Management" was published in the Project Management Institute Journal in 2001.[4] The University of Ottawa added the DBM to the curriculum of its MBA program. The DBM has been adopted by the Treasury Board of Canada as the basis for its Policy on the Management of Projects,[5] applicable to government projects across the board. Subsequently, Canada's central procurement authority for acquisitions, the department of Public Services and Procurement Canada has adopted the DBM as the basis for procurement solution streamlining and authority delegation.

Analysis Of Analysis Introspectus Ltd.[6] was initiated in 2014 with the prospect of establishing an Analysis Of Analysis Institute (AOAI) — dedicated to exploring the context for societal analytics, drawing the distinction between bon fide analytics and facsimiles thereof.

The larger framework for analytics is the Greenfields Model[7] available at www.aoai.ca. This book addresses Program 2, Module 4 of the greenFields model.

 

0. See The Dynamic Baseline Model for Project Management, Parts I, II, and III, by Mark Seely and Quang Duong starting here at: http://www.maxwideman.com/guests/dbm/abstract.htm
1. That is, "Unpublished" in the formal sense, other than being posted on the Internet at www.aoai.ca/assets/docs/BookWinPM4.pdf
2. Permission granted by Email dated October 9th, 2016.
3. See The Dynamic Baseline Model http://www.maxwideman.com/guests/dbm/abstract.htm
4. "The Dynamic Baseline Model for Project Management", Seely, Mark, and Quang Duong, Project Management Journal, Project Management Institute, Vol. 32, Number 2, June 2001, 25-36.
5. "The Treasury Board Policy on the Management of Projects, Policy, Policies, directives, standards and guidelines", Government of Canada, Treasury Board, 2007
6. Analysis of Analysis Introspectus Ltd. (AOAI) "proposes a universal "lens" through which society can find a common perspective on the analyses upon which we rely", (ref. www.aoai.ca).
7. The Greenfields Model, www.AOAI.ca
 
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