I love lighting people up with fresh concepts that expand their capacity to accomplish great things. This month I’m teaching project managers in Seattle, Olympia, and Portland how to turn their best ideas into outstanding results. Thanks to these Project Management Institute chapters for inviting me to speak their members.
My life purpose is to help smart people transform their business and personal lives by sharing the Strategic Superpowers that I’ve learned and created in a 30+ year unusually varied career in business, government, and academia.
My Strategic Superpowers collection consists of proven systems, tools, techniques, and practices which give you the edge in a fast-change world. The Superpower my clients rave about most is the Logical Framework Approach, because it really works.
I’ve now taught 25,000 people of all backgrounds how to sharpen their strategy and design successful projects, by asking the four critical strategic questions embedded in the “LogFrame”.
Answers to these questions populate the interactive 4×4 Logical Framework grid with project information. This makes strategic project design much like completing a crossword or Sudoku puzzle and ensures you address the right issues.
I won’t explain how the Log Frame works here, so If you are not familiar, check out my article Turning Strategy Into Action: The Logical Framework Approach to Outstanding Projects.
Curious about how the LogFrame can be used? Actually, the applications are endless because the built-in scientific and management principles are generic. The core concepts scale and flex and adapt to virtually any situation. Use it to tackle the hot opportunities on your plate, the business transformations needed, the problems that keep you up at right.
Here are some high-payoff ways my clients have put this solution system to work. Which ones resonate with you?
1. Develop Execution Plans for Core Strategies. How do you turn strategic intent and priority goals into reality? Use the four critical questions to activate critical initiatives. Periodically review your strategic plan, refine your project portfolio, prioritize new initiatives and create LogFrames to jump start action.
2. Strengthen Teams Across Work Functions. LogFrames are the perfect vehicle to bring together new teams and task forces around important projects. The four questions and matrix provide a common vocabulary to rapidly integrate cross-functional players around shared Objectives.
3. Reinvent Your Department. From time to time, step back and take a fresh look at where you are and where you need to go. Then develop strategies to get there. When performance lags things feel stale, or your mission changes, doing so becomes more vital than ever.
4. Develop Information Technology Solutions and Algorithms. Smart people tackling tough issues need an industrial strength analytic tool that helps them create effective solutions. This offers a canvas for painting the path to the future.
5. Improve Performance and Profitability. Shore up weak areas and plug leaks in the system to leverage resources and deliver greater customer value. Flesh out initiatives that support strategic sales Goals or balanced scorecard elements.
6. Manage Research and Development. Creating the next must-have gizmo? The matrix captures your solution plan in the form of a testable hypothesis.
7. Make Better Recommendations and Decisions. Use this tool to be systematic and transparent about how to set decision criteria, identify alternatives, collect information, conduct the analysis, and make solid recommendations.
8. Improve Critical Processes. Identify and harvest the low-hanging fruit where a modest process improvement effort yields big returns. Use the matrix to analyze and redesign any process that needs an overhaul.
9. Think Big! Purchasing a remote island and starting your own country? Planning your trip to Mars? Use the LogFrame as a front-end tool for high-level scoping of super-sized projects. You’d be surprised how many innovative projects launched using this system.
10. Handle Emergent Issues. Got a hot potato? Apply this approach to problems and opportunities which arise suddenly and need quick solutions. Slice and dice your project potato with LogFrame logic for a smart solution.
11. Redirect Stuck Projects. Take a fresh look at stalled projects, programs, and strategies; identify and evaluate alternatives, and redirect your effort along promising directions. Break out of stale paradigms by brainstorming fresh Purpose statements and see what new patterns emerge.
12. Evaluate Project Impact. The four levels of LogFrame are ideal to conduct interim evaluations of ongoing projects and make ongoing adjustments. Evaluate completed projects to determine impact and capture lessons learned.
13. Leverage Learning and Development. This process sharpens learning and development programs at all levels. Purpose describes desired behavior change; Goal highlights the expected benefits; Outcomes define the learning delivery system. Identify and develop the future competencies needed and track your progress.
14. Supplement your PMO. Developing a LogFrame at any project stage or gate forces clear thinking about how to execute the future phases. This practical adjunct covers projects that don’t naturally fit traditional project management methodologies.
15. Improve your life. Personal and professional development projects benefit from structured planning. Want to write a book? Complete a Tri-Athalon? Restore a relationship? Plan the ultimate vacation? Start with a LogFrame.
This list could continue indefinitely. But the real question is what’s on your plate that this potent Strategic Superpower can help you handle.
My clients have proven how the Logical Framework Approach builds a strong foundation that leads to predictable success. Discover how to apply this process in this free high-content video course click here.