Let’s talk about how conflict can lead to creativity and innovation in projects
In this podcast, project management industry thought-leader Lee Lambert speaks to me about how conflict can lead to creativity and innovation in projects.
Lee has been working in project management for nearly 45 years, implementing processes and programs in 22 countries. He is the founder and CEO of Lambert Consulting Group and has IBM, Monsanto, CitiGroup, Sprint and Motorola among his clients.
Lee was part of the team that formulated and implemented the Project Management Institute’s Project Management Professional Certification Program.
He has written two books including, Project Management the Commonsense Approach: Using Earned Value to Balance the Triple Constraint and upwards of 30 journal articles.
Points raised in this podcast:
- Conflict situations should be seen as opportunities for good project managers.
- Conflict is not necessarily bad if it is appropriately managed.
- You will rarely be successful in project management if you actively avoid conflict.
- Project managers must not take conflict personally.
- Personal relationships must remain separate from any project problem in order for it to be properly resolved.
- Conflict is rarely one person’s fault.
- Taking too much ego into a project can create unnecessary conflict.
- There is no point arguing the best way to do something, if both ways arrive at the same result.
- Laying down rules of engagement, including how people are expected to perform and work with each other, can eliminate unnecessary conflict.
- This can encourage the same team members to actively want to work together on multiple projects, because they know they can expect the same rules of engagement to be in place.
- Consequences should exist for non-performance. This can be difficult within matrix organisations without clear hierarchy between the project manager and team members.
- When project managers are assigned to a troubled project, going back to the beginning and creating these rules of engagement can address much of the conflict.
- Project managers will not always be given the team members that are best suited to the project, but they have a responsibility to help them reach their potential. These people may bring a more creative and innovative approach.
- Inspiring respectful competition between your team members can create an environment of creativity and innovation.
Find out more about Lee and Lambert Consulting Group here.