Effective delivery requires carefully designing the approach to deliver a solution to address transport challenges. This includes consultation, coordination, and subsequently evaluating the results achieved.
Transport projects fail because they either experience program failure, which means could not be implemented as designed, or theory failure that is executed as designed but did not produce the desired result. The focus here is on eliminating program failure by thoughtfully outlining an implementation plan to ensure the solution can be delivered as designed.
Effective delivery requires you to use best practice project management, translating planning and thinking to execution. Project management involves two levels of thinking: ‘what’ has to be achieved, and ‘how’ to achieve the results. For large projects, project management becomes very sophisticated and employs systematic approaches like PMBOK or PRINCE2.
Successful execution and delivery requires Focus, Leverage, Engagement and Accountability according to ‘The 4 Disciplines of Execution.’
- Discipline of Focus: be clear about what matters most, narrow the focus to the top priority goals
- Discipline of Leverage: use the 80/20 principle and focus on the 20% that gets 80% of the results. You don’t have unlimited time and resources, so don’t try to do everything.
- Discipline of Engagement: as a project manager, you have the authority to make things happen, but you can’t do everything yourself. Align the deliverables of your team and key partners.
- Disciple of Accountability: you are measured on results, unfortunately this is like driving a car looking in the rear-view mirror. Identify and act on a few leading measures which are predictive of the outcomes.
In the delivery of transport solutions, consultation with key stakeholders is critical. Ensure the effective coordination of efforts, particularly across government agencies.
Success in delivery depends on maintaining the commitment and confidence and gaining the agreement and responding to interests of partners and stakeholders. Otherwise, a disaffected key stakeholder can derail your project.
There are five levels of engagement, depending on the importance of the partner, from inform, consult, involve, collaborate, through to empower. You need to determine the appropriate level of engagement for each key stakeholder for each element of your project.
The area that is frequently neglected is the subsequent evaluation of the results of a transport initiative.
Evaluation can consider different measures of success, such as appropriateness, effectiveness, and cost-effectiveness. The key is to agree on the evaluation criteria to assess success in planning the project.
- Effective delivery requires best practice project management to be used
- Failure to deliver the desired outcomes is either program or theory failure
- Successful project delivery involves the four disciplines of execution – focus, leverage, engagement and accountability
- Ensure effective coordination with key stakeholders
- Agree on the evaluation criteria to assess success and subsequently evaluate the results.
To learn more check out the online course Addressing Transport Challenges.