In this interview, major projects PM Karlene Agard and I talk about how to set up a project right and then discuss lessons learned. The first 1.30m are me padding while waiting to get Karlene into the discussion – she was ready, but Facebook was keeping us waiting – so feel free to skip that first 90 seconds!
Transcript below, in case you prefer to read, without the first 90-seconds of waffle.
Elizabeth: Hi. It looks like you’re on the beach.
Karlene: No. No, I’m actually in an office at the moment, but it’s just a particularly nice part of the office.
Elizabeth: Yeah, we’ve got quite good weather here as well, which makes a change because we’ve had pretty bad weather, for the south of England anyway, obviously. Not as bad as some of the places in the world. Thank you very much for joining us today. I know that we had a chat the other day, and we’ve got lots of cool stuff to talk about. I think perhaps it would be a good start to introduce yourself to everybody. Tell us a bit about you and your background.
Karlene: Sure. Thank you for having me here. I’ve worked in the rail industry for four and a half years. I worked in safety reporting, and then I moved to change project management, and then I worked as a risk and value analyst on major project division within Network Rail. During my time there, I really enjoyed working with major projects and helping them to get set up for success. Starting them correctly from the beginning. A lot of the time, I noticed that there’s this desire in the project management community to get things done. People will have their ideas of what they’d like to do, and they’ll look to progress with it, but they won’t necessarily step back and say, “What is it we’re really trying to achieve, and what is the best way to achieve that?”
One of the things that you do within value management is come up with a framework, which will help you to say, “These are the outcomes that we need from this project,” and then you can use that to guide you throughout the project management process to help you figure out what is the best option to deliver, and get you that outcome that you need.
Elizabeth: That’s all about starting it right, isn’t it?
Karlene: Yes, yes. Absolutely. Since then, I’ve moved to TFL working as a risk manager and currently Parliament, but actually not working within a project manager role there, and I will have to say that the views expressed in this video are my own and not representative of my workplace.