There is a growing understanding that Programme management is vital for big organisations. Methods like MSP are increasingly used by big organisations for major transformational programmes like
• company mergers
• business reengineering (e.g. ERP or CRM rollout)
• launch of new products, services or markets
• public sector reorganisation
• major sporting events which help regenerate run down urban areas
But it’s less well understood how a method like MSP can help small organisations or small teams.
Small organisations can face for the same need for transformational change as big organisations.
So let’s look at how very small voluntary sector organisation has benefited from MSP over the last few years. The organisation is indeed small, with only 5 staff. But from 2005, it identified some big problems… which could have threatened its very existence.
It’s a publicly funded organisation, and the management team saw that it was not delivering value for money to the funding bodies. It was time for change, time for transformational change, time to apply some MSP best practice. Otherwise, in today’s difficult times, the funding would have been cut, and the very future of the organisation put at peril.
Here’s three of the ways that MSP helped this tiny organisation to re-invent itself… and survive!
1) Develop a vision to drive the change: since end 2008 a vision statement has been in place. The organisation must change over the coming years. It must reinvent itself.
The vision statement explains where things are heading and helps to guide the change. At various annual meetings (AGM, board of control), the vision has been explained and agreed. This is the MSP way – build consensus for change, starting with a vision.
2) Analyse the stakeholders: from 2005, the organisation started to look at the funding bodies as stakeholders, not just as sources of income. MSP helps you to get a 360° vision, to view your situation from the point of view of the stakeholder. With MSP you seek to understand their interests, and to work out how to engage with each stakeholder.
3) Build a project dossier, run the next tranche: In 2010, by looking the stakeholder interests of the major funding body, the organisation identified several options to provide stakeholders with better value for money. One was an outreach project, providing services in a wider geographical area. Another project was educational, targeting 11-15 year-old school kids.
In MSP terms, this was a part of the project dossier, to be rolled out in the next tranche of the programme. Once the tranche plan was agreed, the projects were launched. Soon the outreach solution went live, and by 2011, the benefits were clear and measurable. The outreach was working in 12 towns. Equally, the educational project as fine – the schools were happy.
This tranche delivered clear benefits to a key stakeholder. The story continues today – additional opportunities, follow-up projects in more schools, new projects in the 12 towns… the new tranche is under way.
So we have seen three of the ways that MSP has helped a tiny organisation to reinvent itself. MSP can help your small business or your small team. It’s not just for the big guys!