Book 3 - Facilitating Project Performance Improvement, Jerry Julian, 2010
General Observations and Recommendations
In our opinion, the book is generally well written in a clear style, though
for ease of reading a number of paragraphs are longer than we normally like to
see. In her Foreword to the book as something of a backdrop, Victoria J, Marsick
"Project teams form a temporary community with a common focus even though members
may be spread around the world and often cross professional, functional, and cultural
boundaries. Project teams bring people together with diverse backgrounds to achieve
shared aims on common tasks under tight timelines - often in collaboration with
customers and other stakeholders - in ways that require innovation and knowledge
sharing. However, the conditions under which project teams work are challenging
and turbulent, and organizations are not always prepared to change the way they
work when they become "projectized". Learning in project teams often requires
coordination, alignment, and intentionality."
Jerry Julian's position is that Multi-Level learning is neither just top-down
nor bottom-up. It is both, because it focuses on facilitating systematic reflection
at three levels: strategies, processes, and projects. In larger organizations,
these three levels of learning may also reflect different levels in the organizational
hierarchy. Chapters 5, 6 & 7
describe how to carry out the Multi-Level learning in detail. We were impressed
by Jerry's arguments in favor of the approach, while we recognize the practical
difficulties of inserting the extra work into the hectic environment of project
work as described earlier.
The book includes a limited number of illustrations to clarify the concepts
being proposed. It is relatively easy reading and provides good advice for those
companies willing to undertake such an endeavor.
R. Max Wideman
11. Ibid, Foreword, p xiii.
12. In case you don't know, "intentionality" is a philosophical
concept defined by the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy as "the power of minds
to be about, to represent, or to stand for, things, properties and states of affairs"
The term refers to the ability of the mind to form representations and has
nothing to do with intention.
13. Ibid, p4.