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Pergamon

Internattonal Journal of Project ManagementVol. 16, No. 1, pp. 43-50, 1998

~: 1997ElsevierScienceLtd and IPMA. All rights reserved Printed in Great Britain 0263-7863/98 $19.00 + 0 00

PIh S0263-7863(97)00016-1

Strategy implementation and project management

Tony Grundy*

Cranfield School of Management, Cranfield, BedJbrd, MK44 OAL, UK

To date, strategy implementation and project management have largely developed quite separ- ately and independently. But there are many opportunities for cross-fertUisation which are cur- rently under-exploited both in theory and in practice.

A number of tools from strategic

management,

value management

and from organizational

change can he imported into project management to enrich traditional techniques considerably. These tools are particularly powerful when applied to complex, multi-functional projects which are entailed when attempting to turn business strategy into implementation. These tools can also

be imported into mainstream project management practice. ,© 1997 Elsevier Science Ltd and

IPMA

Over the past few years there has been increasing inter- est in project management as a vehicle for strategy im- plementation. This interest has resulted in significant advances in:

a) our understanding of how strategy can be

more effectively implemented;

b) our notion of what 'project management' can,

and should, stand for.

Dealing first with (a), it has been recognised for many years that implementation is frequently the graveyard of strategy.' But although implementation is touched on by core texts on strategic management (for exampleZ), implementation rarely gains the prominence which it deserves. Arguably strategic management should achieve its very own 'paradigm shift'3 by mov- ing from a 90:10 concern with strategy formulation relative to implementation to at least a 50:50 concern with each. Turning next to (b) the role of project management, project management's core concern is to deliver a

specific result in a particular time and at a particular

cost. Traditional

project management 4 focuses on deli-

verables (or 'outputs'), on scheduling and co-ordinat- ing tasks, and on mobilising resources. Principally, traditional project management deals with 'hard' task- based business issues, as opposed to 'softer', less tangi- ble factors, except perhaps for defining the role of pro- ject manager and the project team.

The 'design' theory of strategic management pro- motes the notion of a neat strategic analysis-choice- implementation process. However, the 'alternative'

*Tel. 01234751122.

process-based school of strategic management stresses the primacy of:

• Incremental

bolder,

management

(over

and

above

bigger strategies. 5

• Cycles

of

deliberate

and

emergent

change--as

opposed to linear strategy development. 6'7

• Implementation and strategic thinking as inseparable vs discrete phases of strategic analysis and strategic action/

By blurring the boundaries between strategic analy- sis and action we now see a much more central role for project management in strategy implementation. This is especially the case where we are dealing with major cross-functional projects like TQM and Business Process Re-engineering (BPR). Increasingly, project management is being applied outsides its core domain of improving the "competitive hardware' of businesses to their 'competitive soft- ware', 7 and to the process of implementing strategic

strategy

implementation needs therefore to embrace a number of more complex, interdependent and fluid factors in order to be genuinely effective. Managers are, in many cases, only beginning to learn how to process change issues effectively and to turn them into projects. This article addresses how they can actively do this in a sys- tematic way. In this article therefore I outline a number of im- plementation analysis tools which have been developed in the context of implementing strategic change. These tools provide a coherent and robust framework for dealing with strategy implementation projects. But they can also be applied to the more mundane, but no less important field of operational projects. We illus-

43

change, s Project management in the arena of

Strategy implementation and project management: T Grundy

trate both with reference to examples, for instance from Cellnet (a UK cellular telecommunications com- pany), Dowty Communications and Hewlett Packard (UK). To explore how strategy implementation processes can inform project management (and vice versa) we examine the implementation framework: enriching pro- ject management. This is explored as follows:

• Project definition

• Project diagnosis

• Project planning and implementation

• Lessons and conclusion.

The implementation framework: enriching project management

Project definition

Before we look at an overview of the implementation framework we should first examine the issue of project definition. Not only is this rarely self-evident with oper- ational projects but it is even harder to define for major strategy implementation projects. To begin with, these strategy-related projects may be poorly scoped or time bounded. Paradoxically strategy implementation projects should actually be defined with much more rigour than usually is the case. But at the same time there needs to be some latitude in terms

of fluidity

of scope and focus within the project defi-

nition. Strategic implementation projects need to be refined and steered continually. In effect these projects

need to be guided much more sensitively towards their target relative to the more traditional, 'fixed' notion of

a project. (Here our mind-set should be moving from

the Scud-missile type of project to the Cruise-missile.) Just as strategic management has had to come to terms with this greater fluidity and ambiguity so must project management. Indeed, the notions of "deliberate' and 'emergent' strategy in strategic management can be applied in an extended way to strategy implemen- tation-and to project management. 9 Not only do these terms apply to project strategy but also to pro- ject value--which can be partly deliberate, and partly emergent. Figure 1 displays an analytically useful (and man- ager-friendly) approach to understanding project strat- egy.7 Project strategy may start off as deliberate but rapidly move through phases of being emergent, sub- mergent, 'emergency' and possibly even detergent

~ergent~

Figure 1

44

The five forms of strategy

mode. These phases of the strategy (and equally pro- ject life-cycle) are characterised thus:

• Deliberate strategy: where the project has well- defined end goals and a clear and specific means of achieving these goals.

• Emergent strategy: where the project's end goals (and intermediate goals) are necessarily fluid, and also where the means of achieving these goals can change in new and sometimes surprising ways.

• Submergent strategy: where the project is losing its way--its original goals now seem distant and unrea- lisable, and project activities are beginning to frag- ment.

• Emergency strategy: where the project is truly frag- menting into near-random actions and where the project as a whole appears to be overtaken by events.

• Detergent strategy: where the project is recognised as off-course and by now being steered back onto its original track, or onto a new track.

The 'strategy cycle' is not intended to be a determi- nistic series of phases destined to always go around clockwise. Indeed, projects may alternate between deliberate/emergent modes as they are guided to (an often moving) target. But more frequently an emergent phase decays into submergent/emergency when the project goes wrong. Even then projects may continue to fly off-course rather than being grasped firmly once again in the 'detergent' mode. Next we take a look at the definition of projects, particularly to map out their interdependencies with other strategy implementation programmes. We should also at this stage be very explicit in defining the stra- tegic objectives of projects. Where these are left fluid, or taken-for-granted, there is carte blanche to organiz- ational confusion. Also, it becomes even harder to per- form meaningful financial analysis of the project within a business case--particularly of the anticipated

benefits.8

Figure 2 now explores a decision path for deciding at what level to analyse the project. Where there are many and complex interdependencies between the pro- ject and other projects, and where these interdependen- cies are hard to cost/benefit analyse we should look at the wider set of projects as our desired unit of analysis. This is sometimes called the 'strategic project set'. Projects do often have value in virtue of their mem- bership of a group or set. This is sometimes likened to a collector's set of scarce bone china: even to break the milk jug will have a disproportionate effect on the overall value of the set. Obviously when dealing with

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organizational projects, few projects are actively irre- placeable. But quite often the potential value of the set is undermined simply because certain things which you would anticipate as being there are actually absent. For very major strategic implementation pro- grammes there may be so many interdependencies between project clusters that we go up a level more to find the appropriate level at which to appraise the pro- ject. In this situation, we may have to evaluate the effect as the business unit strategy itself.8 One key issue is to what extent it is appropriate to target the economic value of strategy implementation projects. We hold the view that wherever possible, ben- efits (however soft and less tangible) should be tar- geted--and preferably in economic (or financial) terms. 7 This does not mean that projects should be exactly evaluated (in financial terms)--but one would want to see potential benefits illustrated financially. Although evaluating at the strategy or programme level may seem to cut across prevailing wisdom in financial theory about incremental cash flow-based project analysis, this apparent conflict can be recog- nised and addressed. For example, the UK cellular op- erator Cellnet7 appraised its Business Process Re- engineering programme in the context of:

a) linking with other planned strategic change

programmes: here Cellnet mapped out the key inter-

dependencies rather than seeing BPR as stand- alone;

b) analysing the 'with investment' case: Cellnet

targeted itself at a number of stretching, competitive breakthroughs in terms of service, product time-to- market cost, and flexibility;

c) analysing the 'without investment' case: this

consisted of 'more of the past'--Cellnet came to the view that this would inevitably result in competitive

erosion.

Project definition thus raises even at this early stage the important issue of how to evaluate (and value) projects. Project definition may also lead to unbund- ling the project activities within a strategic project set into discrete projects. Or it may involve re-bundling interconnected projects together to create a greater

Strategy implementation and project management." T Grundy

Closed

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Root cause analysis

leverage and critical mass, and thus a greater economic value. Project definition also requires a relatively intensive diagnosis process prior to detailed planning and cer- tainly prior to commencing implementation. This diag- nosis process assesses the real or underlying nature of the opportunity/threat which the project aims at addressing, as opposed to its symptoms or more super- ficial definition. This takes us into the core of our im- plementation framework (Figure 2).

Project diagnosis

Project diagnosis can be greatly facilitated by a small number of implementation tools. First, 'root-cause' analysis (sometimes known as 'fishbone analysis') helps managers to understand the underlying cause of a particular problem. (Root cause analysis is a tool imported from the quality management literature.) An example of root cause analysis is shown in Figure 3. This deals with a typical analysis of com- munication-this is typically a weakness in many or- ganizations and often a prime candidate for a strategic breakthrough project. Notice the complexity of even surface root causes: these would need to be pursued further back to their ultimate cause beneath this still relatively general level of analysis.

Project planning and implementation

Further tools for fleshing out project plans include 'How-How' analysis and 'From-To' analysis.7

Strategic

Turnaround

Figure 4

Resolve

Channel

Conflict

Reduce

Cost Base

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Channel

I

Re-train

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Manufacturing

Strategy

How-How analysis: strategy implementation at Skil Corporation (in the USA)

45

Strategy implementation andproject management: T Grundy

How-How analysis can be used to work through the detailed implications posed by strategy implemen- tation. For instance, in a now famous Harvard Business School case study, Michael Porter describes how a US corporation, Skil, a power tools business, tried to achieve a turnaround (or detergent) strategy. This strategy had two main planks: refocusing distri- bution channels and reducing Skil's cost base in an attempt to become market leader. Implicitly, Skil man- agement worked out the logic of implementation unconsciously using a "How-How' approach. The key ingredients of this implementation strategy can now be depicted through the How-How methodology (see Figure 4). How-How can act as a very fruitful brain- storming tool to encourage managers to think through (in a progressive degree of detail) the implications of the strategy. Next, 'From-To' analysis is a simplified version of the organizational paradigm, 1'2 or analysing 'how we do things around here'. 'From-To" is perhaps a more manager-friendly approach as it can be readily tailored to managers' view of their world--and couched in their terms (and thus not in more academic language). 'From-To' (or 'FT' analysis) focuses on some of the

key shifts which one is trying to achieve in progressing

a particular strategy implementation project. FT analy- sis adds value through:

• Capturing in a much richer way the broader (and sometimes less tangible) shifts implied by the pro- ject.

• Focusing not merely on concrete organizational out- puts but also shifts in processes.

• Analysing not merely 'where we want to be' but sim- ultaneously 'where we are now'.

also be used to track progress in

both implementing strategic change generally, and in progressing specific projects. One way of operationalis- ing this is to score different aspects of the From-To

on a 1-10 and then drawing up a profile of "where we are now' vs future vision. This highlights key gaps (see Figure 5 for an example of organizational structure change).

FT

analysis

can

Implementation forces

from

the original notion of 'force field analysis' from Lewin

(1935).

Implementation forces analysis can be defined as fol- lows:

Implementation forces (IMF)

analysis is derived

Structures*

Goals*

Behaviours*

Cost base*

FROM

Responsiveness*

;-

TO

* You need to identify shifts relevant to you

Figure 5

Using 'From-To' (FT)

46

T

Enabhng

Forces

Constrammg

Forces

Figure 6

~°eW~¢t 'reSentun

ommunlcatlons

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differences

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installed

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Case's

Case's

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l~m~sunderstood Iposrtaon

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~dafferent

Integrabon

deferred

Dowty case communications

force field analysis

Implementation forces analysis is the diagnosis and evaluation of enabling and restraining forces that have

an impact on a project.

IMF analysis is a tool which brings to the surface the underlying forces which may pull a particular change forward or which may prevent progress, or even move the change backwards. These 'forces' can be separately identified as 'enablers' or 'constraints'. But neither set of forces can be adequately identified

without first specifying the objective of the strategy im- plementation project. Put simply, enablers are the in- fluences on the project which makes it easier to implement, and the constraints are those influences making it more difficult. Turning back now to IMF analysis, the most effec- tive way of evaluating the forces enabling or constrain- ing achievement of the strategic development objective is to do so pictorially. This picture represents the rela- tive strength of each individual change force by draw- ing an arrowed line whose length is in proportion to that relative strength.

A horizontal version of IMF analysis is depicted in

Figure 6. Note in this case that, on balance, the enabling forces appear less strong than the constrain-

ing forces. This particular analysis is of Dowty Communications strategic plan for the early 1990 s. It shows that although many of the plans, processes and programmes had been put in place, it was nevertheless difficult to envisage implementation being a complete success. Subsequent events suggest that implemen- tation difficulties at Dowry Communications were very severe. As a rule of thumb, one would wish to see the enablers outweighing the constraints by a factor of at least 1.5 to 2 overall. Otherwise we should be con- cerned and potentially worried that implementation droop will set in. Also, any stoppers really must be addressed, other- wise implementation really won't happen. During (and before) implementation the key implementation forces should be continually monitored to ensure that none threatens to 'go critical' and become a stopper.

A number of pitfalls need to be avoided in the use

of force field analysis, which include:

• Focusing primarily on tangible (as opposed to less tangible) implementation forces.

• Missing our major constraints because the team wishes to paint an 'ideal' rather than a realistic pic- ture of the change (we return to these issues in a moment).

• Failing to identify a 'stopper': that is, a change which has such a powerful impact that it is likely to stop the change in its tracks. 'Stoppers' should be drawn either as a thick black arrow or, alternatively, as an arrow which goes right to the bottom of the implementation forces analysis and 'off the page'.

A stopper can be defined as an influence or change which will effectively put an end to the initiative either through direct confrontation or passive resistance. (Many strategy implementation initiatives may fail because of 'limpet management'--just as one con- straint is loosened another reasserts itself.) Also, there may be cases where a specific enabling force can be made strong and prove decisive in moving the change forward. This kind of force may be described as an 'unblocker' and can be drawn as a very long (or thick) positive line on the IMF picture. There may also be instances where a negative and constraining force can be flipped over to make a posi- tive force, and in so doing transform the picture. For instance, if an influential stakeholder (who is currently negative) can be turned around in favour of the change, this can provide a major driver in the strategic development process. IMF analysis should not be used simply to reflect, but also to re-shape strategy implementation projects. At the diagnosis stage not only should it be used to map the existing pattern of implementation forces, but also to identify what pattern of forces is required in order to move the projects forward at an acceptable pace.

Some do's and don 'ts of IMF analysis

Do's include:

• Brainstorm all the key tangible and less tangible forces impacting on the project.

• Include key forces drawn from your 'FT' analysis (see section later), and the stakeholder analysis (see the next section).

• Do the initial IMF analysis on an 'as is' basis-- show the warts and be prepared to be provocative.

• Where a major constraint exists, draw this in as a stopper (that is as a very long downward arrow) to draw attention to its role in braking the change pro- cess.

• Use the tool throughout the strategy implementation process as the forces impacting on projects will change over time.

Don'ts include:

• Confuse IMF analysis with simple cost-benefit analysis. Benefits should only be included as a force if they are perceived by and owned by key stake- holders. Often, these benefits are in the eye of the programme initiator and are neutral in driving the change process forward.

• Just use IMF analysis as a tool to describe the cur- rent position rather than how the various levels can be re-shaped.

Stakeholder analysis

Stakeholder analysis is our next tool for analysing strategy implementation projects. Stakeholder analysis

Strategy implementation and project management: T Grundy

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Stakeholder analysis

(

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has entirely reshaped the way in which strategic devel- opment has been implemented. L7'~° Stakeholder analysis is the systematic identification of key stakeholders and appraisal of their influence on, and posture towards implementation. It may also involve creating a strategy to reshape the influence of these or new stakeholders. Stakeholder analysis is our second type of organiz- ational radar which helps guide strategy implemen- tation projects. The tool used is as follows:

• First, identify who you believe the key stakeholders are at any phase of the process (the 'stakeholder brainstorm').

• Second, evaluate whether these stakeholders have high, medium or low influence on the issue in ques- tion. (You need to abstract this from their influence generally in the organization.l°)

• Third, evaluate whether at the current time they are for the project, against it, or idling in 'neutral'.

of

stakeholders. The cluster of stakeholders depicted on a stakeholder grid (see Figure 7) should then be assessed to see what the overall picture looks like, particularly:

The above gives a good

'first cut'

of the pattern

• Is the project an easy bet?

• Or is it highlighting a long slog?

• Or, finally, does this seem like 'mission impossible'?

then

move on to the next phase:

• First, can new stakeholders be brought into play to shift the balance or can existing players be with- drawn in some way (or be subtly distracted)?

• Second, is it possible to boost the influence of stake- holders who are currently in favour of the change?

• Third, is it possible to reduce the influence of antag- onistic stakeholders.

• Fourth, can coalitions of stakeholders in favour be achieved so as to strengthen their combined influ- ence?

• Fifth,

to

Following

the

first-cut

analysis

managers

can

can coalitions of stakeholders

antagonistic

the project be prevented?

• Sixth, can the change itself, in appearance or in sub- stance, be reformulated to diffuse hostility to the project.

• Seventh, are there possibilities of 'bringing on board' negative stakeholders by allowing them a role or in incorporating one or more of their prized ideas?

47

Strategy implementation and project management." T Grundy

FOR

Attdude

NEUTRAL

AGAINST

Figure 8

LOW

MEDIUM

Influence

HIGH

Stakeholder analysis--Dowty communications

• Eighth, is the pattern of influence of stakeholders sufficiently hostile for the project to warrant re-defi- nition of the project?

An example of stakeholder analysis in use is con- tained in Figure 8. This is again based on the position as assessed by internal managers of key stakeholders at Dowty Communications. Stakeholder analysis can invite as many questions as it yields answers. These questions can be used by man- agers to track potential positions of stakeholders (and their agendas) in specific meetings and chance conver- sations. Often a particular stakeholder may be difficult to position. This may be because his/her agendas might be complex. It is quite common to find that it is only one specific blocker which has made a stake- holder into an influential antagonist. Where there are very large numbers of stakeholders at play on a particular issue, this may invite simplifica- tion or even dissolution or re-formulation of the pro- ject.

Attractiveness and implementation difficulty

Now that we have led you through the three key tools of implementation analysis, it only remains to look at the trade-offs between attractiveness and difficulty. The three implementation tools tell us little, if any- thing, about whether a particular strategic implemen- tation project is beneficial. The tools are concerned purely with the implementation process. Benefits are only relevant in terms of shaping implementation forces insofar as they are perceived and shared by key stakeholders in the organization. Only if that is the case can they legitimately be introduced as enabling or constraining forces. It is perfectly possible, for instance, to find a strat- egy implementation project which is attractive and which also has clear benefits, and yet where the im- plementation difficulty is extremely great. Alternatively, a project may be relatively easily im- plemented, but not particularly attractive or beneficial. The attractiveness/implementation tool ('AID" grid) enables these trade-offs to be achieved. Pioneered in conjunction with Hewlett Packard, this tool enables a portfolio of possible projects to be prioritised. Figure 9 illustrates a hypothetical case. Project A is seen as being both very attractive and relatively easy to implement. This project is non-con- tentious and will probably be given the go ahead. Project B is somewhat more difficult. It is only med- ium-attractive and is difficult. Project B requires a

48

"~

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~ MEDIUM

LOW

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Attractiveness/implementation

VERY DIFFICULT

difficulty

(AID)

good deal of testing (a) of the net benefits (is it really that attractive--would it be much harder than we cur- rently think?). Project C is relatively easy--it will probably end up being zapped unless it can be reformulated to make it both a lot more attractive and easier. Project D presents the biggest dilemma of all. Although it appears to be very attractive it is also very difficult to implement. Yet managers will tend to focus on the attractiveness of the project rather than its actual difficulty. And that can occur even though they have gone through the IMF and stakeholder analysis thoroughly. When piloting the AID tool at Hewlett Packard this happened on two occasions. Quite separately, two 'D' type projects were identified and as managers spent more time analysing them, commitment to action levels built up. Although neither of the projects went ahead--in their existing form--both myself and the internal facil- itator Stuart Reed, had to be relatively strong to con- vince the teams that some further refinement was necessary. Stuart Reed reflected at the time:

I had gone through with them (the managers) both the

implementation forces and the stakeholders. Although

it did seem to be an attractive project our two organiz- ational tools were telling us 'it is not going to happen'.

I think because the managers were going through the

analysis tools for the first time (and hadn't actually tried to implement the project) they hadn't quite re-

alised that it really wasn't going to happen.

Scenarios

Finally, we turn to the use of scenarios for steering im- plementation. Scenarios are:

• Internally consistent views of the future.

• Which focus on discontinuity and change (not on continuity).

• Which also involve exploring how the underlying systems in the business environment may generate change.

• Views of how the competitive players (existing and new) might behave.

Just as 'strategy' is frequently defined as a pattern in a stream of (past and current) decisions, so a 'scenario' is equally a pattern of future events and of the inter-

action between customers, competitors and other key players both outside and inside the company. Scenarios are not static and comprehensive views of the future. Scenarios are in many ways more like a video film--they are of necessity selective but contain a dynamic storyline. Scenarios thus contain a series of views (pictures) of the future. The scenario contains a storyline which enables these pictures to hang together. The story can be run (again like a video film) for- ward or, alternatively, backward. By replaying the story you can work backwards from a particular scen- ario to see what events might bring about a particular outcome (or 'transitional events'). Scenarios are not therefore an excuse to make broad or vague generalisations--as they are pictures they have a clarity about them which will enable recog- nition. Managers need to know which world they are entering into--the resolution thus has to be sharp, not fuzzy. In AnsotVs terms, LI they are ways of picking up, amplifying and interpreting weak signals in the en- vironment (external or internal). Project-based scenarios, like all pictures, will thus have a foreground and a background, some features of central interest, and others which are more peripheral. To begin to construct a project-based scenario it is especially fruitful to explore the key assumptions (explicit or implicit) which have been made in believing the project will be a success. This invites the use of the 'Uncertainty/Importance' matrix. Here some of the critical assumptions are brainstormed. They are then positioned in the four quadrants in the current cer- tainty/importance matrix. Then, where they are per- ceived to be 'less important' managers can test why they think this is the case. Equally, where the assump- tion(s) is considered to be 'relatively certain', once again this can be challenged. Once this testing has been done, specific assumptions may emerge in the danger-zone or South-East of the grid. These can now be used to generate project-based scenarios where perhaps one or more assumptions are not met to explore what might happen. This analysis can then be used to:

• Generate contingency plans.

• Identify project 'hot spots' which need to be very closely monitored.

Certain

4

Least

important

I

\

%

%

x%

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Very

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Uncertain

Figure 10

Uncertainty/importance of assumptions--cellnet

BPR project

Strategy implementation and project management." T Grundy

• Drive risk and (financial) sensitivity analysis--for the business case.

• Ultimately, to decide whether or not to go ahead with the project (perhaps it is simply too risky).

Figure 10 gives a live example of the uncertainty/im- portance grid. Here we see how at Cellnet certain assumptions underpinning its major business process re-engineering programme turned out to be consider- ably more uncertain and important than had pre- viously been recognised. Uncertainty/importance analysis thus provides a most valuable tool for Everyday Scenario Planning (or ESP). This should prove to be an indispensable ad- dition to the project manager's arsenal. In order to prioritise strategic implementation pro- jects it may also be advisable to prioritise their import- ance and urgency (see Figure 11. (This grid was discovered spontaneously during change management work with ICI Colours during 1990. Interestingly, the Burton Group (Management Page, Financial Times, November 8 1995) also used a similar approach in its massive store restructuring programme. Naturally, the 'importance' and 'urgency' grid invites the question of 'important to whom and why?' (hopefully to the business). It may also result in ques- tioning the degree of perceived urgency. Once again, this grid can be linked in closely to stakeholder analy- sis. Finally, importance and urgency analysis can be used to map separate projects and their interdependen- cies pictorially--as a prelude to planning the critical path(s) within a complex strategic change programme.

Integrating the tools

It is possible to interrelate the various tools. For instance, stakeholder analysis can be used to generate assumptions about specific stakeholder positions in order to provide input to the uncertainty/importance analysis. Also, IMF (implementation forces analysis) can be used to dig down into the particular agenda of a specific stakeholder--thus exposing factors enabling vs constraining support for a project. Managers will no doubt find new ways of spontaneously combining and applying the tools. Figure 12 now shows how the various tools can be integrated. Although it is not always necessary to use them all (and certainly not all at once), it is impossible to have available the whole set for use at different phases of any complex, strategy implementation pro- ject.

HIGH

IMPORTANCE

LOW

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LOW

URGENCY

Prioritisations--tensions

HIGH

49

Strategy implementation and project management."

SCENARIOS

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Figure 13

Strategy and projects

the hierarchy

Lessons and conclusion

Strategy implementation projects form an increasingly important and high profile application of project man- agement. McElroy ~z has previously highlighted a hier- archical model of aims-strategy-programmes projects (Figure 13). What we have contributed to is the evol- ution of strategic thinking at both the project level and at the strategic project-set level. In due course a num- ber of strategic project-sets become these ~pro- grammes'. At this level major strategic projects often call for a somewhat different mix of tools to tra- ditional project management. These tools can also be of major benefit to more tactical and everyday pro- jects. We have therefore brought together a number of tools and techniques from strategic management, value management and from organizational change to comp- lement existing project management techniques. This toolkit can be applied to a variety of projects including

50

major organic, business development, acquisitions,

business process re-engineering, structure and culture change, quality management and continuous improve- ment projects. These techniques are particularly well suited to cross-functional projects. It is hoped that writers in mainstream project man- agement can carry these techniques forward--and also to develop these further. Strategic management and project management have very much a common enemy overcoming the constraints posed by strategy implementation.

References

1. Grundy,

1993.

2. Johnson

A.

and

Hall, 1989.

N.,

Implementing Strategw Change.

Kogan

Page,

Scholes,

Exploring

Corporate Strategy.

Prentice

3.

Kuhn, T. S, The Structure of Scwntil~e Revolutmns. Chicago University Press, Chicago, 1962.

4.

Turner, J R., The Handbook of Proleet-Ba,~ed Management. McGraw Hdl, 1993.

5.

Quinn, J. B., Strategies Jor Change Logwal hwrementalism. Richard D Irwin, Illinois

6.

Mmtzberg, H. and Westley, F. Cycles of orgamzational change. Strategic Management Journal 13, 1992, 39 59.

7

Grundy, A. N, Breakthrough Strategw~ /or Growth. Pitman

Publishing, 1995.

 

8

Grundy, A. N., Corporate Strategy and Financial Decisions. Kogan Page, 1992.

9.

Mintzberg, H., The Rise attd Fall o/ Strategic Planning. Prentice Hall, 1994.

10.

Piercey, N Diagnosing and solving Implementation problems m strategic planning. Journal o.["General Management 15(1), 1989

11.

Ansoff, H. I.

Managing

Strategic Surprise by Response to

Weak Signals. Cah/'ornia

Management Review XVIII(2),

1975,

21 331.

12

McElroy, W., Strategic Change APM, 1995.

Through

Project Management.

Dr TotO' Grundy ts Senior Lecturer

m Strategic Management at

Crw~eld School o/ Management, and Director. Cambridge Corporate Development. He has ii'orked with BP, 1CI and KPMG, and ts author

oJ several books on strategy, finance

and change management, mchuhng

Breakthrough Strategies [or Growth

(Pitman, 1995).