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Frederick Site Dinner - Complexity’s influence on practice – The soft side of project schedule management

PMI Baltimore Site - Frederick Dinner Meeting*

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Complexity’s influence on practice – The soft side of project schedule management

Presented by Mike Oliver, PhD, PMP

This educational event qualifies for 1.00 PDU within the PMI Talent Triangle - Leadership

This presentation focuses on the phenomenon of how project schedule management practitioners’ perception of complexity affects practice.  The presentation is based on the presenter’s doctoral research exploring two questions.  First, how do project schedule management practitioners perceive project complexity?  Second, how does that perception influence practice?  Proceeding from a theoretical orientation situated in reflective practice theory, data was gathered through interviews with project schedule management practitioners who possess the Project Management Institute Schedule Professional (PMI-SP) credential as a representative sample of the broader population of project schedule management practitioners.  With respect to the research question about the perception of complexity, the study results revealed participants’ exhibition of sensitivity to five forms of project complexity influencing schedule management practice: volatility, uncertainty, structural, technical, and social.  In response to the second research question, the study results revealed utilization of three iterative, non-linear strategies characterizing participants’ response to their perception of project complexity: awareness facilitation, adaptive rigor, and agent enlistment.  Although the results showed practitioners engaging in reflective schedule management practice, their response to social complexity’s effect also exhibited practical application of actor-network theory.  The insights from this study contribute to the project management theory-in-action research literature focused on advancing exercise of reflective practice as a response to increasing project complexity.


Speaker Bio: Mike Oliver (Ph.D., PMP) is a program/project management (PPM) professional with over 30 years of experience, including five years in commercial health insurance software applications development and 14 years in various PPM consulting roles with the former global IT services firm, EDS (acquired by Hewlett-Packard in 2008).  In his final role with EDS, he served as the PPM Technology Leader for the global PPM Capability Group that managed the PPM standards, professional development, methods, and tools for the company’s 5,000+ project management professionals. Dr. Oliver holds patents for developing an earned value analysis software application called EVAnalyzer for Microsoft Project, for which he also received the EDS 2005 Distinguished Engineering Award. He also received the EDS 2006 Distinguished Engineering Award for his Schedule Quality Analyzer application. Since joining The MITRE Corporation in 2011, Dr. Oliver continues to provide PPM consultation and solutions for U.S. government federal agencies and MITRE teams supporting those agencies. He developed the MITRE Schedule Analysis Tool for rapid evaluation of program and project schedule quality. He also developed a Dependency Network Analysis Toolkit and a Monte Carlo schedule/cost risk simulation engine for Microsoft Project. Dr. Oliver received his Ph.D. in the field of organization management with a project management specialization from Capella University (Minneapolis, MN). Over the past 25 years, Dr. Oliver has presented at a variety of project management conferences including the PMI College of Schedule Annual Conference, the ESI Portfolio Management Conference, PMI Global Congress events, Project World*Business Analyst World conferences, and various PMI chapters and professional development events.



Event Properties

Event Date 11-20-2019 6:00 pm
Event End Date 11-20-2019 9:00 pm
Registration Start Date 10-19-2019 5:00 am
Cut Off Date 11-19-2019 11:55 pm
Individual Price ($42 Non-Member Price; $37 Member)
Location (Click link for address) Dutch's Daughter

Group Rate

#Registrants Rate/Person ($)
6 42.00
7 42.00
8 42.00
We are no longer accepting registration for this event