Vince Hines, Senior PPM Consultant at Wellingtone, was the facilitator of choice to design and deliver a bespoke project management training course tailored to the senior profile of the leadership team. The resulting professional development has delivered a tangible impact on the transformation strategy’s project leadership, as Steve Thompson, Head of Customer Experience for Panasonic Europe, explains.
“I would wholeheartedly recommend Vince. His ability to tailor training content to a client’s needs, coupled with his professional, lively and engaging delivery style, make him able to connect with anyone regardless of their demographic, background or starting point.”
Steve Thompson – Head of Customer Experience, Panasonic
Understanding the Training Needs of a Diverse Senior Management Audience
On It was January 2018 when Customer Service Europe’s leadership team first explored the project management implications of implementing a new Customer Service strategy, as Steve recalls. “Initially, we sat down as a team to design a new strategy for Europe, before exploring the implications of that strategy related to specific projects and the projects portfolio,” he explains.
“We developed a governance structure, steering group and high-level project documentation to clarify key approval dates, milestones and permissions. But we also realised that it would be beneficial for us to build our own skills and understanding when it comes to effective project management, so that we could enhance our project leadership approach. As senior leaders, we were very clear that we weren’t attempting to become specialist project managers in our own right. Instead, we needed an expert who could to introduce us to the processes and techniques that deliver well-run projects, help us to embed a common set of principles to guide our project portfolio decisions and show us how to work effectively with the rest of the business in implementing those projects.”
Having explored the market, a recommendation led Steve to engage with Vince, who demonstrated an immediate appreciation of the training priorities. “Right from the start, Vince spoke my language and understood what we needed,” Steve says. “Within our leadership team we have people of diverse skills and experience working in different markets and cultures. So, it was a challenge to find a training format that would suit everyone. Vince rose to that challenge, creating a bespoke training programme that accommodated the skills profiles and multi-lingual demographic of the delegates, as well as eliminating any jargon and acronyms that might cause future confusion. He included our own governance process in the course content, ensuring that everything sat together as a coherent whole. His careful attention to customising the agenda resulted in a great training experience and extremely positive feedback from the leadership team.”
Bringing Project Management Leadership to Life
The agreed course content covered project management, best practice, teamwork and life cycles before examining best practice processes and techniques. According to Steve, the success of the training was as much attributable to Vince’s skilled delivery as to the programme itself. “Vince had a very personable approach and engaged with our team in an impactful way. He ensured that the content was relevant to us, referring the lessons back to real scenarios that resonated with our people. He used concrete examples to evidence the importance of what we were learning, and that reassured our delegates that the training offered genuine value for our business transformation moving forward. He skilfully handled several logistical issues – not least communicating effectively with delegates speaking English as a second language and adapting the schedule to accommodate disruptive travel circumstances. We sought feedback from all delegates after the course delivery. They overwhelmingly agreed that the course was well paced, well structured, expertly delivered and relevant to their everyday roles. Individual participants also told me that they found the training to be an ‘excellent experience’, ‘the best thing that could happen to us as a team’, and ‘presented with style, energy, a logical sequence of content and humour.‘”
“Right from the start, Vince spoke my language and understood what we needed. His careful attention to customising the agenda resulted in a great training experience and extremely positive feedback from the leadership team.”
Steve Thompson – Head of Customer Experience, Panasonic
Applying the Lessons Learnt for a Tangible Strategic Impact
Since the training course was delivered, Panasonic’s European Customer Service leadership team has started to apply the newly learned techniques, in conjunction with the governance structures implemented internally, according to Steve. “When our steering group meets to review project submission documents, we are already seeing the toolkits Vince introduced being applied. That has really helped us to achieve clarity in our decision making. Currently, we’re embarking on a huge IT project that will keep us busy for several years to come. We engaged in a highly successful planning session using Vince’s post-it note technique and it really helped us to define the project strategy and passages of work. In just a day, we nailed the high-level project plan based on key milestones, we identified the necessary skills and competencies, we mapped our stakeholders and we emerged with clarity on the right way forward. It was Vince’s tools and techniques that drove that enhanced productivity. I have also started exploring the potential for adapting his toolkits to the virtual world, so that we can collaborate online from our various locations and engage in planning and review sessions remotely, bringing significant efficiency benefits. I was pleasantly surprised by how much traction we achieved in just two days of training. I would wholeheartedly recommend Vince. His ability to tailor training content to a client’s needs, coupled with his professional, lively and engaging delivery style, make him able to connect with anyone regardless of their demographic, background or starting point.”
For more information about Panasonic visit https://www.panasonic.com/uk/