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Goal Directed Project Management (GDPM)

Is a pragmatic, light-touch, non-bureaucratic and people based approach originally introduced in the 1980s by a group of project management consultants – Kristoffer Grude, Erling Andersen and Tor Haug.

GDPM breaks down the complexities of project management using simple tools and practical techniques which are easily understood regardless of whether you are experienced in project management or not. Ideal for line managers who need to introduce changes but who do not want to gain formal project management qualifications or accreditation.

GDPM can be used as a stand-alone approach or to complement and bring to life knowledge gained from other methodologies such as PRINCE2™, APM™, PMI™ etc or your own organisation specific methodology.

What is GDPM?

As the name implies GDPM focuses on the project end goal and what outcomes need to be achieved - rather than getting immersed in the detailed activities of how they will be achieved. It is a well tried and cost effective approach – no need for expensive systems, licences, qualifications, accreditation or extensive learning.

The resulting achievement-based milestones are more robust to change; plans are simpler – a plan on a page – making it an ideal progressing, control and communications tool.

GDPM is a particularly effective approach when used to deliver business change, breaking down functional boundaries and engaging people from all areas of the organisation regardless of PM expertise. It focuses on those areas that significantly increase the chance of project success using a small and simple documentation set.

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There are many formal process driven methodologies but research still shows that ~80% of projects fail to realise their benefits - Why? It may be caused by lack of competence, poor application, using a methodology just for the sake of it or a combination of all the above.

Each project may be unique but they often suffer from a bureaucratic overload of applying the same methodology to all types and sizes of projects. This mechanistic approach can often be an end in itself where teams spend more time delivering the process rather than delivering their projects! As frustration grows management request more and more levels of planning detail which makes it difficult to see the overall picture and detracts from the activities which are needed to deliver.

Teams often resist the creation of clearly defined goals, objectives and success criteria because they fear failure and prefer ambiguity - giving them the opportunity to manipulate ‘successes’ as the project progresses. The GDPM approach seeks to eliminate ambiguity, focusing on clarity and agreed success criteria.

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GDPM Key Principles

  • Active Sponsorship
  • Clarify What not How
  • End Goal focus / Boundaries
  • Objectives & Success criteria.
  • Those that deliver it – plan it!
  • Achievement-based milestones
  • Magic 7 roles & responsibilities
  • Stakeholder Engagement
  • Project 'conscience'

GDPM Applied Learning Workshop

Just 2 days in our ‘applied learning’ hands-on, simulated and safe project workshop provides delegates with the confidence, techniques and competence to tackle projects immediately they return to the workplace.

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Fast Forward are GDPM experts and co founders of the Global GDPM Alliance.