Win-Win-Win Culture: Interview on Project Management Consulting in Toronto
As Toronto’s economy grows, so does the need to run business projects effectively. While public and private investments both in the area and in new technology clusters grows, companies need experienced project management consulting in Toronto itself to guarantee that they deliver on their investments.
We recently interviewed Ludo Pasquereau, Business Unit Manager of MI-GSO | PCUBED Toronto, to learn more about what the field of project management looks like in the city and how our teams are supporting local yet global businesses with their project delivery.
What's your background with MI-GSO | PCUBED?
Ludo Pasquereau: So, I joined MI-GSO | PCUBED in November 2019 as the Business Unit Manager for the Toronto hub. That was four months before COVID hit – talk about an interesting transition. Previous to that I had over 20 years in the Aerospace industry, working first for Air France company and Zodiac Aerospace in France and then Zodiac Aerospace and Safran in Canada when I moved here in 2006.
I mainly focused on project management and program management in the service side of Aerospace: that is known as aftermarket and covers anything that happens to an aircraft after its first flight.
I acted there as the director of the aftermarket and this combined hands-on experience helped me to understand what our clients are trying to achieve through project management consulting services.
What is the field of project management like in Toronto?
Ludo Pasquereau: So, project management in Toronto, I would say is growing. Toronto is the fifth biggest city in North America from an economic standpoint. It’s booming, and it’s booming because of the industries, like Manufacturing, Pharmaceuticals, and Aerospace that own major facilities in Toronto.
Many of the manufacturing players who outsourced a lot of their manufacturing in the past, have recently adjusted their strategy to reinforce their presence locally in Toronto, even more so after the COVID pandemic. On the other hand, they want to leverage the newer technologies to transition into their Digital Transformation while generating cost savings and a competitive advantage.
With that in mind, you can easily understand that the big players have a lot of projects going on. They want to grow their footprint but reduce their cost structure and do all of that locally. Additionally, there are a lot of investments in clusters of new technologies. They need that support, and project management is the most efficient methodology in that regard.
However, project management is still very decentralized. Businesses may use a project services framework because it’s a niche type of business, but they may not be centrally coordinated.
We’re moving our clients towards the Project Management Office (PMO) and PMO as a Service, which is a really centralized way of managing projects providing more value and outcomes for the money. But PMOaaS is still very new in terms of culture and difficult to find, I would say. On top of that, you add Waterfall vs. Agile frameworks, which is still fairly new, and you have a big picture of what project management looks like right now in Toronto.
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What trends are you helping our clients navigate?
Ludo Pasquereau: Change management and flexibility are what our clients are looking for with our project management consulting services. They’re looking for people with good communications and analytical skills that will help them transition their employees and organization in line with their strategy, while drumbeating the delivery of their projects to meet targets.
A recurring example is with Digital Transformation initiatives. In one example, our client wants to deploy a third party application on their Toronto site. They want to go paperless and to manage their documentation seamlessly.
One of the main challenges is the cultural gap between the third party application, in this case an IT start-up running under an Agile Project Management framework, and our client’s employees who are used to the Waterfall framework.
Not only is there a framework disconnect that needs to be worked out, but some team members are concerned about their job security and have expressed resistance to change. Our consultants are not only helping to deploy the third party application onsite and on target, but are also using their “connector” skills to support our clients’ employees in overcoming this resistance.
What makes us a unique consultancy culturally?
Ludo Pasquereau: Two things come to my mind: our expertise in the business of drumbeating and executing our clients’ projects to targets, and our ability to transpose Project Management across industries and countries and customize our support to our clients needs.
As for our expertise, our consultants are extremely well-versed in the project management spectrum. They not only cover the technical side of project management – gaining PMP and Agile Certifications for example – but they dive further into what it truly means to manage cost, schedules, risk, and quality in today’s hybrid world.
Learn more about our M|P Toronto’s culture from Michael Owarume.
As for our ability to transpose project management, our consultants have worked all around the world and in various industries, and they can bring that cultural diversity and experience to solve our clients’ issues, generating value, whilst deploying the best practices and tools in Project Management.
Their international profile fits very well in the immigration-friendly nature of Toronto. Their ability to adjust and take on initiatives outside their comfort zone translates into a focus on value with resilience for our clients.
Is there an engagement that you're particularly proud of?
While M|P Toronto is still relatively new, we’re already working in aerospace, life science, energy construction, and transportation. We have really great engagements within each of these sectors driving value with our clients.
One in particular that I’d like to share though is with a major pharmaceutical manufacturer. We are helping them to transition into Industry 4.0 technologies as part of their overall multi-site digital transformation program.
MI-GSO | PCUBED is delivering on that engagement with four consultants in four different sites around the world. It’s a team effort and highlights very well our ability to support our clients locally and globally.
Do you have any lessons that you'd like to share?
Ludo Pasquereau: Over the years, I’ve learned that the more you empower your peers to do more of what they want to do, the more they will contribute and excel in their jobs, and in extension in their life. This is what I call the Win-Win-Win Model.
Everybody knows about the win-win model, but our model is one where the consultants are in the center. If they feel empowered to align their experience and growth at M|P with their personal career goals – their purpose, their motivation and therefore their satisfaction levels will significantly increase. As a result: it is a Win for them.
With more motivation and drive come more results and value which is a Win for our clients. And, with more results and value, our clients are more likely to grow a stronger partnership with M|P which means a Win for us.
Therefore a Win-Win-Win.
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