Greetings from Melbourne, Australia.

I can’t prove it but I believe that the way we execute the precepts of project management is, at least to some degree, determined and influenced by our cultural surroundings.

Melbourne is, by all accounts, a fantastic cosmopolitan city. It is a place where people of diverse and different backgrounds, cultures and nationalities have come together and call this place ‘home’.

While the ‘hard’ aspects of project management (in which I mean to include the core techniques used by most project management methodologies) are fairly universally implemented, it is in the ‘soft’ aspects that people of differing backgrounds will differ from one another.

Using a bit of an extrapolation from my experience in the Southern Hemisphere (both in New Zealand and Australia) I would be happy to suggest that the management style exhibited in these countries is by far different than the one illustrated in American based movies and TV series. This is equally manifested in the area of project management where the need to deliver is complemented by a ‘fair go’ approach.

On a different front, just like the rest of the world, Australia is always quick to adopt current and innovative management ideas. In recent years the ‘migration’ to agile and agility is taking hold in many organizations. And just like other countries, Australia too is undergoing a transition from a bottom-up to a top-down drive for implementing agility across the organization. This, however, is not a seamless or easy journey and many companies are in the process of finding their own way and inventing their own path in that transformation effort.

 While I live and work in Melbourne, I have access to the vast knowledge base, experience and stories produced on a regular basis around the world. The ability to listen, read and collaborate with people from all over the world makes the geographical separation that much less important. The use of social media tools enables me to connect with other like minded individuals at any time and in any place and I can’t wait to see what other technologies will come our way in years to come to make such interactions and collaborations even easier.

About “#PMFlashBlog – Project Management Around the World”: This post is part of the second round of the #PMFlashBlog where over 50 project management bloggers will release a post about their view of project management in their part of the world. 

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7 Comments

  1. I wouldn’t put too much credence in movie and television depictions of life at the office, here in the USA. We certainly don’t.

    I hope that I get the chance to manage a project in Oz or NZ some day. If not, I’ll settle for a lengthy wander. I think I’d like it almost as much as the American West.

    Reply

    • I hope I have not made Australia more romantic than what it actually is. Should the misconception arise (as a result of my misconstrued post) let me clarify it here: Even in Australia there is an expectation that projects will be delivered within agreed parameters :-)

      Reply

  2. Shim,

    You absolutely right about the softer side of project management. And local culture does have an impact. One international project I worked on the supplier selection and engagement for had the key sponsor in the UK, the main project team in Hong Kong and an East Coast US supplier. Now there’s a challenging mix if cultures!

    The best time (I.e. Least inconvenient for everyone) was at 8am Hong Kong time, but the locals refused to start before 9am. It wasn’t in their culture.

    Hi hum. We got there in the end.

    Good post.

    Allen

    Reply

  3. Pingback: PMFlashBlog Round 2 "Project Management Around the World" Posts ##pmflashblog #projectmanagement | A Listly List

  4. Pingback: PM FlashBlog 2014 – Australia | The Practicing IT Project ManagerThe Practicing IT Project Manager

  5. Shim,

    Always enjoy a view from your scene.

    A point you painted is in my mind around connected folks, like yourself, through the web, now get to take part in a global, professional community, but management oversight and implementation may remain local flavor.

    Which influences more? A regional management style or a global professional influence?

    Appreciate the post,

    Toby

    Reply

    • Hi Toby, great to hear from you and thanks for your comment.

      I love the way you’ve interpreted my post and more so the question you pose (the answer to which will require some thinking).

      Cheers, Shim.

      Reply

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