Strategic Project Management

Strategic Program Management Worksheet

The purpose of this assignment is to begin the process of Problem Based Learning. In this step, you will be looking at one or more realistic situations and using them, in the context of this course, to identify the key concepts involved that you will need to understand in order to solve whatever problems you might encounter in those situations. Complete the table below by identifying at least five concepts that you will study from the text on the rEsource page in order to resolve the situations presented; list and briefly describe them in column A.

You have on the resource page a scenario that provides an examples of realistic situation in which these concepts apply. Examine this scenario and in Column B identify specific examples from it which illustrate an application of the concept. The example could be an issue in the scenario which illustrates a concept.

Cite in Column C where in the reading you found the concept that the example illustrated.

Table for Assignment One
A: Concept B: Application of Concept in Scenario C: Citation of Concept in Reading
Example from Global Communications Scenario in MBA/500:
Building Organizational Commitment, which is developed through the activities of:
• Justice & support
• Job security
• Organizational comprehension
• Trusting employees Example from Global Communications Scenario in MBA/500:
Sy states that Global Communication’s competitive edge is drawn from loyal employees, but what will be the effect of laying off employees in the Small Business Group? This contradicts job security as a component of Building Organizational Commitment. Nancy recommends that they tell the truth to the affected employees will accept the explanation, but Nancy is trying to build organizational comprehension (identifying with the organization by keeping employees informed) and re-establish trusting employees, two activities to Build Organizational Commitment. Example from Global Communications Scenario in MBA/500
McShane (2005, ref. pg #?)
Project Management Strategy: Expansion Currently, the schools serve about 1000 students, and enrollment increases by roughly 5 percent per year. The Board of Directors believes that number could be higher, that the school could serve even more communities across the United States.

Our top priority will be evaluating the first year of our three-year plan. To that end, I’ve asked Nancy to put together a summary of our year-end financial and operating results report, as well as a forecast for the coming year.

Although costs are up a few percent, we have negotiated the addition of all of the vacant space in our three buildings at no additional costs.

If we are going to expand this school into other states, we will need significantly more funding to acquire additional locations and fund the marketing. We will need to generate at least three to four million in cash for the next two years to give us the funding we need. Our projects have to yield their committed improvements. “…it is time to expand the traditional role of the project manager from an operational to a more strategic perspective. In the modern evolving organization, project managers will be focused on business aspects, and their role will expand from getting the job done to achieving the business results and winning in the market place.” (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 22)

“By watching your overhead you can spend more on business expansion,” (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 95)

Four Activities of the Strategic Management Process
The typical sequence of activities of the strategic management process is outlined here; a description of each activity then follows:
1. Review and define the organizational mission.
2. Set long-range goals and objectives.
3. Analyze and formulate strategies to reach objectives.
4. Implement strategies through projects. (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 24)
Technology to increase efficiency I’ll start with the new “Life Skills” software. My understanding is that this software would increase the ratio of students to teachers from 3 to 1 to 4 to 1. I see no ratio improvement for next year.

Nancy: We are only showing the ratio increase for new teachers and assistants. Most of the older faculty prefers using one-on-one live instruction, and they get excellent results with that. The newer teachers we’re hiring are more open to the computer assisted learning, which increases the ratio.
A high level of expertise and technology can be brought to bear on the project (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 68)

look at computer technology as the vehicle for work and entertainment. (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 25)

Opportunities and threats usually represent external forces for change such as technology, industry structure, and competition. Competitive benchmarking tools are sometimes used here to assess current and future directions. Opportunities and threats are the flip sides of each other. That is, a threat can be perceived as an opportunity, or vice versa. (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 26)

Factors such as researching new technology, public image, ethical position, protection of the environment, core competencies, and strategic fit might be important criteria for selecting projects. (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 37)
Business development Along with the school’s executive director, the Board has adopted a new strategy that uses business development as the model to increase funding sources and revenues. The three-year strategic program plan includes a number of new projects to help realize this new vision. a new-product development project will likely involve the combined efforts of people from design, marketing, manufacturing, and finance. (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 56)

One of the advantages of creating dedicated project teams is that project participants from different functional areas can develop into a highly cohesive work team that is strongly committed to completing the project. (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 62)

Project managers have to be able to read and speak the culture they are working in to develop strategies, plans, and responses that are likely to be understood and accepted. (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 77)

With the long-term position identified, objectives are set, and strategies are developed to achieve objectives and then translated into actions by implementing projects. Strategy can decide the survival of an organization. Most organizations are successful in formulating strategies for what course(s) they should pursue. (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 24)
Profit increase/Stategic placement John (Thomas, Chairperson, Board of Directors) has grown Foundation Schools revenues by nearly 10 percent per year, bringing financials out of the red. As CEO of a large tech company, John has a strong business background, excellent leadership skills, and is well-respected by school faculty and the community. John’s favorite saying is “Not for profit does not mean ‘for a loss,‘

Nancy and I just returned from a meeting with the Jacobs City School Board and they have agreed to send all of their special needs students to the Foundation Schools starting in September. They have identified 45 students who will be joining us, and they have also agreed to our new rates, which reflect an eight percent increase over the next two years.

Nancy: In terms of the financials and operating results, you can see our net income increased because we enrolled more students this year. And as a result of marketing and business development, we expect a major jump in total revenues for next year, a net income increase of nearly two million dollars.
Companies have to be disciplined in saying no to potentially profitable projects that are outside the realm of their core mission. This requires other criteria be considered beyond direct financial return. (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 34)

Payback formula is Payback period (yrs) _ Estimated Project Cost_Annual savings (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 32)

For example, a firm may support projects that do not have high profit margins for other strategic reasons including:
To capture larger market share
To make it difficult for competitors to enter the market
To develop an enabler product, which by its introduction will increase sales in more profitable
To develop core technology that will be used in next generation products
To reduce dependency on unreliable suppliers
To prevent government intervention and regulation (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 34)
Salary initiatives Jennifer: I have increased my ratio to 4 to 1 and find the software is really a great help. But I agree with Nancy, most of the faculty resist it. And there are no real reasons for using it since it does not impact their compensation in any way.
Andy: Sounds like we could use a new incentive plan for faculty. I assumed their salary was tied to performance.
Jeff: I made the same assumption, when I came on board earlier this year. But the faculty pay system is based on years of service and numbers of degrees, not performance.

…consider recommending a new performance-driven compensation plan for teachers…
However, once a partner, they were virtually guaranteed the position for life and enjoyed significant increases in salary, benefits, and prestige. (Gray & Larson, 2005, p.85)

Reward criteria—the degree to which rewards such as promotion and salary increases are allocated according to employee performance rather than seniority, favoritism, or other nonperformance factors. (Gray & Larson, 2005, p. 73)


Gray & Larson. (2005). Project Management: The Managerial Process. Chapter 1. Retrieved from University of Phoenix eBook Collection database.
Gray & Larson. (2005). Project Management: The Managerial Process. Chapter 2. Retrieved from University of Phoenix eBook Collection database.
Gray & Larson. (2005). Project Management: The Managerial Process. Chapter 3. Retrieved from University of Phoenix eBook Collection database.