Since we began a pilot development programme in April last year, we have seen a 40% increase in project management capability compared with existing methods. What’s more 80% of delegates who’ve been through the programme say they feel more challenged and knowledgeable than when they started.
With results like that, it would seem we have developed a solution delivering sustainable capability improvement across departmental, specialism and hierarchical lines. And who knows; a new way of learning for us all.
The big change in emphasis coincided with a review of our current training provision when we began to challenge the value of someone being immersed in a training environment for X days to undertake an exam of Y questions to achieve Z qualification. Instead of telling delegates, “Yes, that’s how it should be in theory but here…” we took the decision to harness the energy of those eager to put their valuable learning into their working life.
This in turn, led to the creation of the PMPPDP (Project Management Professional Practice Development Programme) - a study programme geared towards developing people academically, professionally and personally at each level of their career.
Included in the programme we mapped out professional career paths; adopted a workshop-style approach to learning and sent delegates back into the workplace with a learning diary to apply the learning and capture what happened.
We introduced regular review sessions looking at capability - based around APM’s Competence Framework – and used 360 feedback from fellow professionals to track progress. Quarterly meetings gave delegates the opportunity to share ideas, while one-to-one mentoring gave them unrivalled access to experienced project and programme managers.
All of the above has contributed to spectacular success we have achieved to date. So is this the end of conventional classroom training as we know it? Well, not quite. We believe it should be complementary and signpost ‘branch lines’ of additional specialist learning – but the focus remains on developing a multi-skilled approach for a multi-talented workforce.
In future blogs delegates will be telling us how they are putting the programme into practice.