APM Conference - New Frontiers; next practice not best practice

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I am well known for my objectionsto the phrase best practice. I can be seen to wince at the mere mention of it. What I dont like about the phrase is the suggestion that weve found a way of working that cannot be improved. Thats why I prefer to use the term good practice because it always gives us room for improvement.

This years APM Conference aims to uncover the next generation of good practice in project, programme and portfolio management by exploring new types of projects, featuring new people and presenting new practices in the profession.

As always, the theme of New Frontiers starts where the 2013 conference finished. Adapt! Chaired by Professor Darren Dalcher, whom I am delighted to be taking over from this year, presented a challenge to the profession to change the way it perceives itself and what it can achieve.

New Frontiers looks at how to meet the challenges of our new profession. We are privileged to be joined by Camila Batmanghelidjh CBE as our opening speaker. A champion for vulnerable children through her charity Kids Company, Camila is an inspiration to the idea that anything can be achieved through determination, clear vision and hard work. A colourful character in all senses of the word, she promises to inspire delegates and change their perceptions of what we can all achieve.

Our closing speaker is Professor Eddie Obeng; no less an inspiration, Eddies pioneering thinking in project management makes him one of the professions great innovators and leaders. Eddie will take Camilas drive and determination and aim to shape it into new type of project management. Eddie refers to this as The world after midnight

In between we have assembled some of the professions most engaging speakers. Andy Griffee has transformed the way the BBC works through his award winning W1 programme. Daniel Jubb is a self taught rocket scientist. Ann Pilkington and Alan Barnard are specialists in managing the toughest and most opinionated stakeholders. While Karan Bawa formerly of B&Q and Trevor Jones of DHL have transformed their companies by putting project management at the heart of what they do.

We will venture into the unknown with Simon Miller of PA Consulting will reveal the challenges of the technology innovation. While Alistair Godbold of Nichols Group and psychologist Glen Fox will provide insights into professional ethics and psychology; both new frontiers in managing and leading people.

It promises to be a day of inspirational speakers with the opportunity to learn something new from every single session. We hope that New Frontiers will change your thinking about how you manage your projects and how you might take them back to your organisations. We look forward to seeing you there.

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Posted by Mary McKinlay on 27th Mar 2014

About the Author
Following a degree in Systems Engineering, my career has encompassed working on a range of complex multinational projects. After 30 years in aerospace and defence, I founded Mary McKinlay Projects Ltd. In 2005 I was appointed as an Adjunct Professor of Project Management at Skema and teach and prepare project management courses on the Lille and Paris Campuses. I also work with the National Centre for PM at the University of Hertfordshire and am teaching on a Masters course for PM practitioners. My industrial experience has been complemented by work on research programmes involving collaboration internationally between industry and academics. I have produced many papers and am a frequent Conference speaker worldwide. The job of interesting young people in engineering careers has long been of interest to me and I am a STEM Ambassador with special responsibilities as a Bloodhound Ambassador (Bloodhound SSC project).

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