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This report is focused on a single subject related to project management. Strategic alignment is at the heart of project management practices because it enables the team to produce the highest quality products and services on schedule (Morris and Pinto, 2010). This report in its subsequent sections will discuss intricately the key reason behind choosing the particular research area as well the particular case of Crossrail. My prior knowledge of project management and how this assignment has expanded my knowledge of strategic initiatives will also be evaluated in this report. Along with these, self-reflection model will also be analyzed for a better understanding of the project. The plan for expanding my knowledge about project management will be elaborated on at the end of the report.
A project that accomplishes its objectives on budget and on time is considered successful. I perceive that project success and project management success must be distinguished for enterprises to judge success. Project achievement is measured in terms of advantages and stakeholder contentment. Project management performance is measured by the project's efficiency in achieving its goals. Efficiency refers to how well a project manages its resources while maintaining positive connections with diverse stakeholders.
Project success is critical as I know – it interconnects success and performance measures. Key result areas (KRAs) and critical success factors (CSFs) provide hints about an organization's ability to effectively deploy its resources in the face of conflicting sub-objectives, environmental uncertainty, and internal politics and restrictions (Radhakrishnan et al., 2021). Leadership Communication and teamwork are critical components for the success of a project. I learnt that since project success is relevant only when two criteria are considered: the degree to which the project's technical performance objective was met on time and within budget; and the contribution of the project to the enterprise's strategic aim.
Project success also entails-
Construction project management demands frequent charts and progress reports, and automated solutions save time. Project management needs knowledge and skills in several fields. Skills in organizing, execution, leadership, and decision-making are significant contributions to this factor in project management.
From the preceding discussion, it is crystal clear that Project Success conceives a vital dimension in itself which provides project management with a functional feature. For this reason, I chose Project success for the analysis.
Crossrail, the new “Elizabeth Line railway project”, is now Europe's largest infrastructure project. Due to the project's scale, expense, and complexity, it qualifies as a megaproject. The £16 billion ($21 billion) new train line will double London's rail capacity, greatly improving the city's environmental performance (Pollalis, Lappas and Taylor, 2019). In terms of sustainability, it is the “appropriate project.” Nonetheless, it is difficult to “do the project right” in considerations of sustainability in a megaproject, as managers and stakeholders of massive projects have historically been hesitant to adopt novel ideas. They prefer tried-and-true procedures to minimize danger. In contrast to that view, the Crossrail management team embraced inventiveness and established a new standard for sustainability for a project of this scale. For choosing the case I underwent and explored many topics, as I accessed the internet, libraries, archives, in addition to the analysis of organizational reports. The use of appropriate secondary sources, such as newspaper articles and the organizational performance of the railway line expansion to Elizabeth, has assisted in the dissemination of this interesting case.
While the project is now experiencing delays due to train signalling system integration, Crossrail's construction methodology and innovation and sustainability approach have generated a legacy of best practices and lessons learned. Since, in the case of the Elizabeth Line, the objective was to provide a high-frequency suburban transit service that connected the capital's two main rail lines, the Great Western Main Line and the Great Eastern Main Line, it is a very significant and strong case. Given the nature of the construction project, I comprehend that the procedures are interconnected and hence difficult. The project began in 2009 and is scheduled to open in 2022. Despite significant challenges and continual interruption caused by a variety of external and internal variables, the service is nearly ready to launch in 2022. Numerous elements contributed to the project's success, all these aspects shaped this case study with dynamism which made it a very interesting and rich case study to review in the context of academics. As a real-life example, I perceived that this case study is very much significant well since the various incidents it has come across, the time frame it is underpinned to and of course the vitality of existence, for this reason, this case study was chosen to work on.
After the completion of this particular project, I understood that I had a very sceptical idea regarding the vast topic of “Project Management”. I used to perceive this topic as a very general one until delving deep into the particular project of the Crossrail. Previously I had the marginal knowledge that project management is the application of specialized knowledge, abilities, tools, and processes to the creation of something of value for others (Müller, Drouin and Sankaran, 2019). Projects include the development of software to improve company processes, the construction of the facility, the relief operation following a natural disaster, and the extension of revenues into a new geographic market. Each project is a brief endeavour to produce value through the creation of an original product, service, or outcome. Every endeavour has a start and an end.
They have a group, a budget, a timeline, and a set of standards that the team must adhere to. Each project is distinctive and unique from ordinary operations—an organization's continuing activities—in that project have a defined end once the objective is achieved. I used to think that only project professionals—individuals who are asked, either purposefully or by circumstance, to guarantee that a project team fulfils its objectives—lead these projects.
After going through all the detail regarding the very project I understood that even several areas are linked to the vast field called project management. Project success is one among those, the other being- programme management, portfolio management, benefits management and project strategy (Martinsuo and Hoverfält, 2018).
I gained enormous knowledge regarding many of the previously unknown and especially that of Project Success since I chose this segment for my evaluation of the project. To elaborate briefly, this huge extent of knowledge undoubtedly would support me in understanding various concepts and aid me in perceiving each project from a unique point of view in my future endeavours to a massive extent.
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Gibbs' Reflective Cycle was the name given to a reflective cycle invented by Graham Gibbs in 1988. (Akella et al., 2021). Additionally, the structure's cyclic nature makes it ideal for repeating encounters, allowing me to understand and systematize from both effective and ineffective encounters. According to the concept, it is broken into six stages.:
Figure: Gibbs’ Reflective Cycle
Source: (EPM, 2019)
Step 1 – Description: This case study as I perceived helped boost my critical thinking skill and helped me enormously to widen my area of knowledge regarding the various aspects of project management such as project success and the very topic itself. The Crossrail case study aided to improve my skills to grasp a subject matter and analyze it meticulously.
Step 2 – Feelings: While starting with this particular task I was not very much confident but as I started reading about the minute details regarding the core topic. I did an in-depth study of the subject matter and various aspects related to that. It boosted my confidence and ignite my desire to delve deeper. I comprehend that the research finding of Crossrail would enhance my capabilities to accomplish my future endeavours.
Step 3 – Evaluation: After completing the report regarding the project of Crossrail, I evaluated the fact that I could identify Crossrail's initial business strategy method as a great aspect of the process. My research aided me with a vast knowledge which I achieved as a result of the analysis.
Step 4 – Analysis: In terms of assessment, the lesson I achieved from this project is that I must hone my skills to analyze data and also indulge in an extensive study on the subject matter before beginning. I have discovered my strengths and shortcomings, which will allow me in future to function effectively on my projects to complete with greater confidence.
Step 5 – Conclusion: To conclude, I would say that I experienced a great extent of knowledge about managing a project. I comprehend the art of gaining accurate information on a topic and completing the accomplishment of specific evaluations as well as increasing my potentials.
Step 6 – Acton Plan The next time I evaluate another project, I would hone my skills more and go through the reviews of several interlinked case studies so that I can gain better knowledge to grasp the thorough understanding of the project I will be allocated to. I could also seek advice from renowned people who are famous for reviewing popular cases around the world. This will undoubtedly help me effectively to better organize the data and also aid me in being confident in systematically comprehending the project.
Project management knowledge contains the abilities and characteristics that a person must possess to successfully coordinate and complete a project from beginning to end. I will hone several essential dynamics to conceive the knowledge, these are as follows-
In addition to breaking a project into distinct sections and prioritizing each goal, I may constantly re-evaluate the project's targets to assist my team to uncover and addressing any difficulties that may delay delivery (Hesam et al., 2021). Project management knowledge entails anticipating potential hazards and planning solutions to mitigate them.
Many project management abilities have become digital in Industry 4.0 along with utilizing this, I will be keeping thorough project notes which can be discussed with my group in real-time, project management software will allow me to connect to my coworkers and clients.
To cope up with a project, I need to deal with concerns such as health, emergencies, and misinterpretations of requirements in a positive, flexible, and solution-driven manner. Emotional intelligence is a skill that can be developed via self-awareness. Knowing how I behave in different situations will help me customise my interactions for the best results.
Project management skills are demonstrated by intervening and seeing a project thoroughly (Tsuyuki, 2021). I will engage myself in functions related to the project to achieve a thorough understanding of the core matter of the project, which will, in turn, aid me in succeeding in my endeavour.
Contrary to popular belief, managers and leaders do not cognize everything (Lin, 2021). To succeed, I will need to go beyond standard project management training and discover new ways to learn about my subject matter or sector.
To sum up, I learnt the significance of the vast dynamic area of project management, its aspect- project success, the importance of this into the domain of the famous course of Crossrail, the new “Elizabeth Line railway project. This project helped me boost my knowledge since it conceives in itself a wide range of information and interconnected circumstances which are very rich from the lens of academics. Using Gibbs' reflection model, I could scrutinize the minute details regarding me that are interlinked with this specific case study. This particular research helped me enormously in cognizing the details regarding project management which I did not acknowledge before.
I can say that the knowledge gathered from this research project on the specific case study of Crossrail has been beneficial to both myself as well as my teammates in terms of both short- and long-term skill enhancement.
Akella, D., Gibbs, A., Gilbert, B., Henry, B., Lee, V., Mathis, D. and Williams, V., 2021. Critical Reflection and Communities of Practice as Professional Development Strategies for Educators.
EPM, 2019. Gibbs’ Reflective Cycle. [online] Expert Program Management. Available at: https://expertprogrammanagement.com/2019/05/gibbs-reflective-cycle/ [Accessed 10 Nov. 2021].
Hesam Hafezi, M., Sultana Daisy, N., Millward, H. and Liu, L., 2021. Framework for development of the Scheduler for Activities, Locations, and Travel (SALT) model. Transportmetrica A: Transport Science, pp.1-33.
Lin, Y., 2021. A study on the relationship between project management competency, job performance and job motivation in e-commerce industry. Measuring Business Excellence.
Liu, M., Kitto, K. and Shum, S.B., 2021. Combining factor analysis with writing analytics for the formative assessment of written reflection. Computers in Human Behavior, 120, p.106733.
Martinsuo, M. and Hoverfält, P., 2018. Change program management: Toward a capability for managing value-oriented, integrated multi-project change in its context. International Journal of Project Management, 36(1), pp.134-146.
Morris, P.W. and Pinto, J.K. eds., 2010. The Wiley guide to project technology, supply chain, and procurement management (Vol. 7). John Wiley & Sons.
Müller, R., Drouin, N. and Sankaran, S., 2019. Modeling organizational project management. Project Management Journal, 50(4), pp.499-513.
Pollalis, D., Lappas and Taylor, M. (2019). Mel Ewell former Chief Executive Officer of Amey, the UK subsidiary of Ferrovial Services. [online] Cris Barron, Chief Communications Officer of Bentley Systems. Available at: https://research.gsd.harvard.edu/zofnass/files/2019/04/20190327_Crossrail-case-study.pdf [Accessed 10 Nov. 2021].
Radhakrishnan, A., Zaveri, J., David, D. and Davis, J.S., 2021. The impact of project team characteristics and client collaboration on project agility and project success: An empirical study. European Management Journal.
Tsuyuki, R.T., 2021. Proactive practice.
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