PMI Keystone Spring 2018 Professional Development Day Sessions Abstract

The PMI Keystone Chapter's Spring PDD will be held on Saturday, April 28th at Penn State Lehigh Valley. Attendees will earn up to 7.5 PDUs. Enjoy Keynotes and breakout sessions. Great networking opportunity.

Sessions Abstract:

  • Opening and Introduction:

    • Project Everest (Alan Mallory) – Technical 1.5 PDU:

Climbing Mount Everest is considered one of mankind's greatest feats of human endurance. The two-month expedition to the top of the world’s highest peak is a journey filled with unparalleled physical and mental challenges through some of the most extreme conditions imaginable.

Alan Mallory took on the challenge and set a world record when he, along with three members of his immediate family, reached the summit of Everest. This incredible, self-guided expedition challenged the mental, emotional and physical limits of their entire beings and at every stage of the ascent demanded unwavering commitment and resilience.

From teetering across ladders spanning seemingly bottomless crevasses and fighting the many altitude-related sicknesses to climbing through a blizzard in the dead of night, every segment of the climb was filled with intense, extraordinary challenges.

Alan’s dynamic presentation focuses on developing leaders and strengthening project teams by reinforcing the professional development and project management skills that are essential for success in any project. It highlights the processes, tools and project stages that are involved in planning and executing difficult projects by using the challenge of Everest as an example of such a project.

It is an engaging visual and educational journey that is supported by many of the stunning photos and short videos captured along the expedition. Alan’s keynote reinforces the importance of numerous leadership qualities and project management tools such as strategic planning, agility, effective communication, risk management, teamwork and development of trust within professional relationships as well as the mentality and passion involved in conquering one’s own Everest, whatever that may be. The underlying message is about how we as project managers need to reach new heights in the way we think and the actions we take in order to advance our profession and achieve breakthrough performance.

Alan highlights various technical components of project management throughout his keynote and shares matrices and examples of project management tools.

Some of these technical elements include:

  • The Work Breakdown Structure for Project Everest
  • Categorized Work Packages
  • A Sample Precedence Diagram for Project Everest
  • A Multi-criteria Decision Analysis
  • Communication Models
  • The Risk Breakdown Structure for Project Everest
  • A PERT Graph for Statistical Analysis on Loss of Life
  • A Risk Matrix for Impact and Likelihood
  • Development of Risk Response Strategies


The underlying message is about how we as project managers need to reach new heights in the way we think and the actions we take in order to continuously improve ourselves and advance our profession. Alan creates a powerful and unforgettable journey for his audience by integrating captivating mountaineering and adventure stories with his innovative leadership and project management experience.


  • Breakout Sessions 1:

    • Healthy Team Dynamics in the Face of Uncertainty (Alan Mallory) – Leadership 1 PDU:

This engaging workshop is built around the fundamentals of a healthy project team, how to develop an effective team, and how to manage the human resource element of a successful project. Through hands-on activities and interactive discussions, we will discuss the acquisition, development and management of a project team as well as various roles and responsibilities of team members.

Some of the areas covered include:

  • Roles and responsibilities
  • Empowering team members
  • EEFs and OPAs that influence team planning
  • Conflict resolution strategies
  • Using a matrix-based RACI chart
  • Regulatory compliance and impacts
  • Communication challenges that arise internally and externally
  • Non-verbal communication
  • Transparency and integrity in the way we communicate
  • Developing healthy professional relationships
  • Managing professional relationships
  • Effective collaboration and team interaction


  • Project Management 2.0 - An Introduction and Getting Started (John Bowen) – Technical 1 PDU:

In this talk, John will share with us the key characteristics of Project Management 2.0 and explain why PM 2.0 has emerged in response to the deficiencies of traditional project management.  The presentation will emphasize the project manager’s emerging role in strategic planning and project leadership and discuss how to achieve more meaningful information with KPIs, metrics, and dashboards.  John will also share with us the current state of PM 2.0 adoption, provide recommendations on how to get started and explain how PM 2.0 can reduce project costs.

  • The Strategic Value of Project Management. (Phil Weinzimer) – Strategic 1 PDU:

The dynamics in today’s market place is elevating the value of Project Management to where it no longer is viewed as tactical but as a strategic asset to the business enterprise. Business unit executives now realize that project management is a key contributor to achieving business outcomes and need to better understand the strategic importance of how they can leverage its value. This session will explore the changes in today’s competitive marketplace, how IT organizations transform into a strategic asset, and why project management is a core competency to ensure business success.

  • Breakout Sessions 2:

    • Building and Promoting Your Personal Brand (Philip Sedhom) – Leadership 1 PDU:

The most successful individuals today have set their sights on developing their personal brands over time. Social media has leveled the playing field, and if you're consistent in building your personal brand, you can reap the rewards. It doesn't take a big or complicated effort, but it does require a persistent approach to promotion.

A key to career success is a strong and positive Personal Brand. By differentiating yourself from others, you can ensure that you stand out to prospective employers and recruiters. It doesn’t matter if you are looking for that ideal job or planning to progress in a current role. And it doesn’t matter if you are a recent grad or several years into your career. If you can’t position yourself as different and distinct from the competition.

This presentation will explore Personal Brand: What is it? Why is it important? How it can be used to kick-start or grow a career?

  • Driving Innovative IT Project Metrics by Embracing Human Nature. (John Bowen) – Technical 1 PDU:

Our objective for this presentation is to enable you to have a discussion with your management and your staff about innovating the project management process.  We will discuss what is measured today… and what should be measured tomorrow.  Obviously, from the performance data we have as an industry, we are not measuring the right things, and if we are, we are not doing it very effectively. 

This presentation is based on the premise that, “what gets measured, gets done.”  The real question is, then, what should we measure, and how should we measure it?  

  • The Strategic Importance of Project Governance. (Phil Weinzimer) – Strategic 1 PDU:

Companies are constantly looking for ways to differentiate themselves from competitors by developing new products and services. As a result, the IT organization is challenged with how to manage an ever-increasing portfolio of projects without an increase in IT budgets. How can we reduce project risk? How can we manage projects proactively and not reactively? What changes need to be made to our Project Governance methodology to ensure project success? This session will explore a case study of a business enterprise and how a Project Management Organization developed a governance project to reduce project risk, improve project performance, increase stakeholder teaming, and save millions of dollars in the process

  • Breakout Sessions 3:

    • Good Leaders Ask Great Questions (Dr. Barbara Geisler) – Leadership 1 PDU:

Why do good leaders ask great questions instead of providing quick answers? As project managers, one of our first instincts is to give information.  When a stakeholder comes to us with a problem, our job is to find a solution and find it quickly. Providing others with fast answers may seem like the most efficient way to get things done, but it doesn’t always get us lasting results. Learning the art (and science) of asking good questions can empower those around you and foster an environment of analytical thinking, problem solving and innovation. This session will help you improve your stakeholder engagement and bring out the creativity and resourcefulness of your project team by learning the skill of asking the right questions, in the right tone, at the right time.

  • Project Governance: What You Can’t Not Do? (John Bowen) – Technical 1 PDU:

Project governance is often defined as doing the right things (demand side) and doing things right (supply side).  Governance processes both define our project portfolio plan and ensure that we successfully complete the plan.  In this presentation, John Bowen will provide lessons and recommendations for establishing and executing an effective project governance process.

  • The Changing Role of Project Managers (Phil Weinzimer) – Strategic 1 PDU:

The consumerization of IT is forcing companies to develop new products and services at a dramatically increasing rate. As a result, IT organizations are experiencing a dramatic increase in project requests that require higher quality and speedy delivery. Project managers no longer sit at their desk only reviewing and updating project plans. They actively engage as part of business teams that develop/enhance new products services and processes that create value, improve margins, and enhance shareholder wealth. This new role requires project managers to improve their strategic business management skills if they are to succeed in a globally competitive information rich environment. This session will help you understand what is driving Project Managers to exhibit strategic business management skills, why is it important, the required competencies and skills you need, and how measure and improve the maturity of these skills.

  • Afternoon Keynote (Dr. James Norrie)

    • Title and Abstract: The Emerging Intersection of Enterprise and Project Risk Management Practices - Leadership 1 PDU

Dr. Norrie, a noted global expert in advanced project management best practices will explore convergence of project risk and enterprise risk management practices particularly as they relate to proactively managing risk across strategic project portfolios which represent the building blocks of strategy for most organizations. There will be an opportunity for questions and answers to debate and dialogue about this important emerging area of advanced practice.

  • Wrap-up Session

    • Introduction to Agile Six Sigma (Thomas McNellis) - Strategic 1.5 PDU


Agile Six Sigma is very different from either Lean Six Sigma or the original method of Six Sigma.

The process consists of using the best tools in Optimization, Operations Research, Lean Six Sigma, Six Sigma, and Big Data Analytics to support transformations of an organization toward those of Agile and Open Organizations.

1.  Overview of Agile & Open Organizations.

2.  The Dynamics of Change in Agile and Open Organizations (based on webinar)

3.  What is Accelerated Change? (based on book)

4.  What is Agile Six Sigma? (based on research)

5.  Why is Agile Six Sigma different from any other Six Sigma you learned?

6.  What is the transformation process in achieving Agile & Open Organizations? (research)

7.  How Agile Six Sigma deals with Change? Hint: they are both accelerated, but one is a structured process (based on research)

8.  Tools for Agile Six Sigma (research)

9.  Best practices for applying Agile Six Sigma Tools (application experience)

10. Examples of significant cost savings

11.Summary with questions and answers

12. 25 questions on (presentation content - questions given out beginning of course) for those who might want a certificate of completion in Agile Six Sigma from AII (subsidiary of Memory Matters)


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