Project Management Heads to Hollywood

February 10, 2016 by FlexPro

When the word “Hollywood” is tossed around the office, it’s only natural to assume productivity is being interrupted by celebrity gossip or tales of a recent trip to the West Coast.  Just a picture of the famous hillside sign inspires visions of the red carpet, star sightings, and a luxurious social community.  Often the setting for a midweek daydream, the Los Angeles entertainment community doesn’t exactly have a concrete place within the walls of your cube.

So what could it have to do with running an efficient and effective enterprise? Far more than you’d think.

Take into consideration what you know about the traditional business model: cost-efficiency, lengthy job arrangements, employee wellness, and ethical practices.  While many of these pillars still bear the weight of corporate America, a drastic shift away from tradition has taken project-based companies by storm.

The ‘Hollywood Model’ is constructed on the same ideals and principles as LA’s flourishing entertainment industry, thus the clever moniker.  When a motion picture is set to begin, experts in all fields related to the film assemble for a given length of time and work toward the common goal of delivering a box-office hit.  Actors, directors, tech specialists, editors, subject-matter experts, and artists all join forces from the first shot until the set wraps production.

Observing the success had on the Left Coast, corporate decision-makers have adopted a similar concept at a stunning pace, particularly within the pharmaceutical and life sciences industries.  Moving away from a century of open-ended employment where the same teams rolled through projects, leaders have opened the doors to an influx of project-based personnel.

The growing trend lends itself to the critical modern need to cut wasteful spending while providing a quality product or service, but it also benefits members of the workforce.  This week, we focus on how the ‘Hollywood Model’ is changing the landscape of working America:

Expertise Across the Board

If you’ve decided to work with a project-based business model, you’re often able to define start and finish dates for your employees.  With this in mind, you can begin assemble a team of experts for each functional area the project impacts.  Simply stated, each team member brings something different to the table and is responsible for injecting the project with their expertise.  Gathering a diverse group of experienced professionals, all areas of a long-term venture are addressed, leaving each contributor with a clear understanding of their role.

Ease of Evaluation

One of the more valuable offerings this approach provides is the ability to evaluate performance in individual parts in addition to team progress.  While a skilled project manager should have cross-functional knowledge, the distinct borders created by each area of expertise ease the process of understanding where a team is truly sound and identifying pieces that need improvement.  The impact of precise evaluation is magnified on larger undertakings, as companies can react quickly to delays and ensure cost-efficiency.

Expanding the Network

It would be easy to finish with the age-old idea that more minds and viewpoints on a project can lead to a higher level of success than just a few, but let’s take that a step further.  As companies benefit from connecting the best and brightest in their respective areas, so too do the functional experts.  The importance of working with new colleagues and broadening your professional network is more critical to personal advancement than ever before.  Proving capable of carrying your weight on the slow march toward project-based, team achievement can lead to future opportunity through connections formed along the way.  As it is in Hollywood, those who can get the job done are likely to be cast in the next big hit.

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