As-a-Service (aaS) models provide the ability to purchase a solution tailored to your needs rather than developing a custom capability in-house. SEI has built its business model with a focus on aaS through a foundation of experienced consultants.
In August, a group of seven SEI consultants will once again step up to the challenge and cycle 190 miles over 2 days across the state of Massachusetts. This event, The Pan Mass Challenge, raises money for life saving cancer research and treatment at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
Effective communication among team members and stakeholders is a critical component of any project. Without strong communication among project participants, project success is unlikely. The root cause of failed projects is often found in lack of alignment on goals, incomplete understandings of project roles and responsibilities, misunderstanding of the project status, and lack of recognition of risks and dependencies; each of these failures has its roots in flawed communication. Miscommunication is project approach-agnostic, and poor communication will equally sabotage Agile, Waterfall and Lean projects.
“Question everything,” in some form or another is a quote attributed to many different people throughout history. From Euripides to Einstein to countless philosophers, poets, and teachers, we’re always taught that sometimes the questions are more important than the answers themselves. How does this fit in the world of providing business and technology solutions?
Some weeks ago I was checking out the SEI collaboration portal and a link to an article about ‘Emotional Intelligence’ caught my eye. This term struck me as somewhat of an oxymoron because when I think of intelligence, I think IQ. As a person who is naturally curious about other people and what makes them tick, I was eager to read more.
Corporate culture has become an increased focus for companies looking to differentiate themselves in competition for both customers and talent. Companies that historically lack a focus on culture are now faced with the challenge of transforming the organizational mindset. Transformation efforts of any kind are difficult to manage, but culture is especially challenging. It’s impossible to fully anticipate how experiences will alter employee perceptions and ripple through the organization, but it is possible to create a solid foundation for success.
The two minute drill has been a staple of football since players were strapping on leather helmets. While it has produced many dramatic finishes to football games over the years, the two minute drill is equally likely to end in disappointment. In the 1980’s the Cincinnati Bengals took this concept and turned it on its head by asking “what if we applied the underlying concepts of the two minute drill to the preceding 58 minutes of the game?” The result was an offensive juggernaut that by 1988 would land them in the Super Bowl. Although I didn’t realize it at the time as I watched the Bengals season unfold week by week, I was learning lessons that would ring as true in my work as an SEI consultant as they do on a Sunday afternoon in front of the TV.
As consultants, we often find ourselves moving across industries, navigating diverse organizations, and engaging in a wide range of project initiatives. Each client is unique with its own challenges, operational processes, and cultural environments. Our work is dynamic and constantly changing. For most of us, this is one of the main reasons why we chose this career path; we have a growth mindset where we are drawn to learning new things and seek new challenges and opportunities. Additionally, one of the reasons many of us chose SEI specifically is our focus on the collective value model, where constantly sharing successes and failures internally to benefit our clients is intrinsic to what we do.
I recently finished reading The Heart And The Fist by Rhodes Scholar and decorated U.S. Navy SEAL, Eric Greitens. Mr. Greitens is an amazingly accomplished, yet very humble man. He worked with nuns in Mother Teresa’s homes in India as well as aid workers and volunteers in Rwanda, Bolivia and Bosnia. He fought beside marines and fellow Navy SEALS in Afghanistan and Iraq. Throughout his journeys he discovered this world requires both compassion and strength; it requires service and leadership. The paradox here is that we need both. Mr. Greitens’ message, and his life, spent as a true servant-leader, deeply resonated with me and reinforced why I love working for SEI.
No matter the size or complexity of your organization, keeping energy and motivation high among your teams is crucial to the success of your projects. Let’s face it, this important task can seem downright daunting. Many times our clients have taken note of the leadership we provide to their projects, and utilized some of the methods we employ to tackle this problem. So, we thought we’d share some of our own ‘motivational practices’ to assist you with your efforts.