Programs evolve as all in life, mainly because the different phases of a program requires different skills, teams, and resources. We go from a high degree of ambiguity in the inception phase, progressing and gaining shape during the definition, moving to a delivery mode during the execution and “get the job done” during the closing.
In some major programs, you can change the people leading the program organization to reinforce the skills required for each phase with the best profiles of the organization. In the majority of the cases there are not changes, but the organization and its leadership have to adopt different attitudes/styles depending on the phase of the program. This is important because we have to be able to change the pace of the program and transmit to the rest of the teams that the focus changes.
- Program identification : The nature of this phase is so focused on research and analysis and there are so much SMEs working on different activities. An environment like this can best be lead by facilitating, provide guiding, offering suggestions and finding the right people to complete the goals of this phase.
- Program definition: For the design of all aspects of a program, different topics and groups are involved. The preferable style must focus on coordination, provide priority to the main elements of the program that evolves in different ways and promote the work done in peers of different groups.
- Program execution: We know what to do and have authorization to do it, so let’s concentrate on the delivery. Here an instructive style must ensure the task completion with a minimal disruption.
- Delivery of the capacity : During the program execution, the capacity starts to be delivered too. Here the business change manager should be measuring and cheking that the expected capacities are delivered with respect the program plan.
- Benefits realization: The focus of this phase is on the preparation of the organization for the changes and communications. Here good business analysis and planning skills are key to anticipate to the transformation and cover all gaps of the operational space, so a soft transition can be ensured. The acceptance of the changes by the operational teams is the key and an eye on it is paramount.
- Program closing: All activities are focused to complete all aspects of the program execution and the realization of benefits. Here the style desired has to focus on “get the things done”, combined with the analysis of results and the communications of the changes done and the benefits for the whole organization.