Getting the community spirit

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The commitment and enthusiasm of the people in the APM community never ceases to amaze me, whether newcomers or the most distinguished members of the profession such as our Honorary Fellows . But for a cloud of volcanic ash, I would have made it to Belfast to visit our branch and corporate members there. However I did manage to make the Specific Interest Group forum, the Branch forum, the Honorary Fellows annual lunch, the Education Network advisory group, a visit to APM's Aberdeen chapter and Project Challenge.

I felt privileged to attend the Honorary Fellows lunch - people who have shaped the art and science of project management over the last 30 years: Dr Martin Barnes CBE, Professor Peter Morris, Bob Assirati, Professor Stephen Wearne to name but a few. It was a pleasure to see the first edition of the APM history presented to those present. Dr Barnes ruminated on developments in project management and proposed that the next innovation to follow portfolio management will be portmanteau management ie. a cluster of portfolios. Please note you heard it here first!

At the other end of the career spectrum, a third of the people at the branch forum were forum virgins as someone put it. New ideas, different experiences, changing views its all part of the melting pot of the community. The fact that thirty people willingly give up their weekends every 6 months for the good of the profession is pretty impressive. How to capture that energy and translate it successfully into a thriving online community where practitioners interact with practitioners is the current challenge as we launch our new online communities.

Delve into the detail of project, programme and portfolio management and you will probably find someone from an APM Specific Interest Group has a finger on the pulse of some topic or other. The scale of the SiG members ambitions in terms of dissemination of the collective knowledge and wisdom is awe-inspiring, given that most of the participants also have full time jobs. Some of this will be on show at the Knowledgeshare event on 12th and 14th May and we hope to see that community extend its reach online as well.

Project Challenge great to see familiar faces and new ones too but visitors generally seemed thin on the ground despite a busy seminar programme with good quality speakers. Who went? Who didnt go? And why?

More than ever, the mix of people and the wide range of communications media are driving a thriving project management community. The more active you are, the more rewarding you will find it so get out there, whether virtually or face to face, you will come across the most interesting people you could ever hope to meet!

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Posted by APM on 6th May 2010

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