PMI EMEA 2018 Congress in Berlin (arrival and Day 1)

If you remember last year, I made extensive daily updates of the conference and spent time detailing not only the sessions but also catering, networking etc…:

I made the call this year to have a more global view about the overall experience being in Berlin for the PMI EMEA 2018 Congress. It helps also to reflect on the content and realise that what sounded great at the time of the congress may become in reality not that applicable on the field… so good to do this one month later.

It all started with me joining one day early, on the Sunday, to check-in in the hotel, go to the congress venue and get my badge and start looking around! I must say that I have been lucky to get the right hotel at the right location as you see in my previous post. This allowed me to visit nice places while learning a lot… some quick pics:



We started with an inspiring key note with Rowan Gibson and I must admit that the 4 lenses of innovation did hit the mark big time…


Of course part of the keynote is, as usual, some common sense but Rowan did share nice material in terms of how to be successful through innovation, some material I really liked and could be considered as low hanging fruit:


these are easily adaptable to your day-to-day life and enables opportunities to deliver innovation in an efficient way. I recommend to read the book to “unleash” your potential!

After the keynote I moved to a great session with a good speaker and a most of all someone who is involved in the topic, John Daly is a Director in Cisco Advanced Service Global PMO, managing a global team of project and program managers. His purpose was to review the change occurring around us within this fourth industrial revolution, the changing workforce and workplace dynamics, how we will manage projects, and what skills we will need in just a few years to keep pace with this change.

I could relate to this subject as it is part of my role to develop the skills of my team which has similar profiles than John’s team. It reinforced my feeling that we are going in the right direction. He could explain in simple words and examples the case behind the direction.


So after setting the scene with appropriate numbers and timelines, he could deliver great takeaways for the audience and I must say I reviewed my personal action list and got inspired by the session… The presentation is coherent talked to me and enables you to take first steps… what else would you want???

My next session was with Brigid Buchheit Carney, Head of Operations; The Argus Group and I must say it was really not only entertaining but a learning experience as well. Having said that if you are already a LEAN Practitioner or 6 Sigma, it was a back to basics but using a concrete case with another practitioner is always added value.

“There’s never been a better time to embrace Lean Six Sigma into the project management life cycle! Lean Six Sigma can complement existing project methodologies and reduce costs and risks. Join a Master Black Belt in her case study of applicability of Lean Six Sigma into project management.” and the objective was apply Lean Sigma techniques into the project management life cycle; adapt successful Lean techniques that will allow any project manager to become more Lean.

She achieved the objective with flying colors by giving some new hints and tips I can use in my day-to-day life! I think she could hit us all at different levels of experience and share effectively her experience…


On the other hand I am not sure yet we can use this in all cases and try to see how to use this outside of the process improvement context e.g. New IT Services Development or deployment, etc… this might be the limit I see here!

The last session of the day was about the Transformers i.e. Navigating Complexity in Projects of the Future. MOHAMED KHALIFA HASSAN, Director; LIFELONG and MUHAMMAD A. B. ILYAS, CEO; LIFELONG are well known and respected presenters in PMI EMEA Congresses and I never miss their presentations as they always are backed up by quality data and experience. You can find them in Italy Rome PMI EMEA Congress 2017 Day 3 and i must say that as usual they did hit the mark!

They really had ambitious objectives:
1) Describe how the future of work is changing
2) Explain what project managers need to do today to be ready for the projects of the future.

I am not sure they achieved these as it was fairly new for part of the competences but they brought to light some new concepts to me at least.

Do not hesitate to go to their lectures, it is always inspiring and good quality! On a personal level I have a takeaway to learn more about Design Mindset and by the way they also are really approachable if you need to have a chat.

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