Chapter Communications Blog

Société suisse de Management de Projet


Let’s get together and join the hundreds of participants already registered! 

The congress is a privileged moment to enrich your knowledge on the transformation of the profession and meet other project management professionals. 

Exciting speakers, a wide selection of training classes, passionate exhibitors, plenty of networking opportunities and let’s be honest, really good food will fill each attendees' day !

Let’s catch up on April 21st at HEC Lausanne.

More info :

Open Space 10: Winning Project Politics

Author: Leandro Benda, PMP

Leandro Benda

We often think of the standard phases of project management, but one aspect comes up more and more to stir up trouble in the life of the project... This phenomenon is called... “Politics”

Are you intrigued in the political aspect of project management? 

Don't hesitate any longer, come and join us in this open space and discuss this fascinating subject!

You have thought about the initialization phase of your project, well prepared the planning, the management is going according to your plans and suddenly you are facing political obstacles, yes, this politics in companies which is sometimes a well submerged part of the iceberg, but which can prove to be crucial for the success of your project.

It is not always easy to identify and manage the stakeholders and their changing positions towards your project and their interests. How to act considering the risks when faced with such profiles, which are well versed in this aspect and have a strategic position within companies?

It is essential for a project manager to be involved as much as possible in the life of the project, but this often proves to be an obstacle course, particularly because of politics. What tricks exist?

In the same way, how to best exploit the mastery of this political dimension to succeed in projects and where are the limits?

We will try to find tracks with our participants on these different topics during this open space event “Winning Project Politics”, sharing your questions and / or different experiences on these situations is key.

About Open Spaces

A safe space to share experiences, tips, or discuss issues and questions you may have regarding project management. We have a variety of thought-provoking topics in store, so do come armed with some real-life problems you want to be solved by your trusted expert colleagues.

Who’s it for?

Are your PM/PMO concerns getting enough attention?

Are you creating good-quality connections online?

How often do you structure meetings radically differently than usual?  

We welcome you - anyone who has to manage projects, whatever their nature - to share the pressing points you'd like to talk about and perhaps get input for a solution.

Our main principles

Safe room - thus no recording, you are free to share and it stays within the few people in your breakout room.

Introductions in the main room by all participants - we aim to allow 15 seconds per person which is enough to share: name/position/ company or industry / what you’re coming with; in one sentence. This helps everyone to know who is who.

In small breakout rooms, it is easier to open up to a few people than to many.

Participants bring their own topics to discuss.  More topics => smaller groups => better interaction and engagement. 

In every breakout room, we want to ensure everyone gets a chance to provide at least some brief input into the question or issue.

We use the Slido tool to capture your suggestions in the Topics Backlog.

Whoever comes, is the right person.  Whatever happens, is the only thing that could have happened.


Do not hesitate to register to this Open Space which will take place online via Zoom on Tuesday, May 10th.

All our events can be found via this link:

Rather than asking yourself, “Can I do this?”, ask yourself “Do I want to do this?”

Author: Monika Keller, PMP

Monika Keller

Years ago, I was asked to lead Project X. It would have been a big change management project, but I couldn't stand by it. It just didn't fit my understanding of sustainable and responsible business as it was clear it would not end well for the company and my colleagues. Perhaps you know what I mean. Yet I knew my sponsor had to implement it as it came straight from the top (he was showing them the effects by regularly stating facts and figures, but they had other priorities). - I looked for all kind of answers and excuses as to why I couldn't do it. At one point, my boss said, "Monika, I'm convinced you can do it. Because no matter what project I give you, it always turns out well! You have all the prerequisites to do it. The question is rather whether you want to do it..." -

He had caught me. And suddenly, the scales fell from my eyes. In fact, I didn't want to do it! And fortunately, the relationship between my boss and myself was so strong that I could be honest about it without fearing negative effects. I didn't have to say yes. I was psychologically safe and allowed to allow myself not to want to do it. All I had to do is say “no” and it would be okay. Why did I then have such a hard time saying it in the first place? The company had enough other projects for me to lead in which I could put my heart and soul into and feel comfortable with. Still there was a reason for me to be there and I could influence certain things the way I want!

Perhaps you had this situation too. How many times has your gut feeling told you, “You can’t do this”, and then you said to your boss, “Sure, no problem”, instead of asking yourself “Do I want to do this?”. You may have feared negative consequences if you had started a “real conversation” about it. It may have been embarrassing and depending on your cultural background, not appropriate to question anything that comes from your supervisor.

How about approaching the topic with a fresh mind next time and ask yourself the question “Do I want to do this?”.

If the answer is “no”, you can ask yourself why. Is it because you feel you lack training, experience and self-confidence? Then just say so and you can use it as an opportunity to grow your skills. Most likely, your company will support you by further training or give you a coach or mentor to help you advance your skills. It will be a win-win for all.

However, if your answer is “no” and the reason is your personal values that may lead to a conflict of interest, it is a different story. It may also be that you have other priorities in life at the moment that are equally important for your work-life balance, such as taking care of family members or seeing friends or doing sports or finishing that further training, and you see that this project really counteracts your deepest needs of balance. You are allowed to pause and then make a conscious decision. Have you ever thought about it that way?

Maybe you had a new year’s resolution for this year. You may want to work fewer hours in order to have more time for other things such as sports, meeting friends or doing a further education. Or you may finally want to create that “me time” to think about what you want to do the next 20 years of your life. Then you may find inspiration reading my blogs at Blog | 3C Keller (

There is one about setting healthy boundaries that I can recommend you. As a PQ Coach, I also offer app-based self-paced learning by Positive Intelligence if you want to grow your mental fitness muscles to recover faster in challenging times, improve relationships, take laser-focused action and lead a healthier work-life balance. Just ask me for more information if that resonates with you.

Happiness starts with inner peace. If you make decisions that are in line with your values, you will be able to respect yourself. Others will also respect you more, not less, if you set healthy boundaries and advocate for change that is sustainable.

Here’s how to contact me: Kontakt | 3C Keller (

Editorial PMI Switzerland Newsletter March 2022

Author: Philip Springuel, PMP

Philip Springuel NEW 100x100 

Dear members and friends,

Welcome once again and thank you for being faithful readers of your monthly PMI Switzerland Chapter newsletter. Remember that you may share, access, comment and feedback on our social media platforms.

This month we open with a call to action from new Chapter President Stefan Vesenmeier. His Message from the Board informs us of the important steps initiated by the Chapter following events in Ukraine. Learn how you can help carry our spirit of volunteerism where it is most needed.

Benefit from our usual line-up of articles covering original work on subjects of critical importance for all project managers, including retrospective reporting or informative aspects of our future events. Please take careful note that your PMI Switzerland Chapter has planned many new and recurring networking events in Basel, Geneva, Lausanne and Zurich for you to re-connect and add valuable knowledge and skills to your resume. Do register early and enjoy a long awaited reunion with your peers. We are particularly honored that PMI Brightline Director Tahirou Assane Oumarou, will be speaking at PMI Switzerland's online event on 31 March, "Leading a dynamic people-centered transformation."

Most sincerely,

Philip SPRINGUEL, PMI Switzerland Newsletter Copy Editor

AMM 2022 - Impact Warrior Excellence: How To Master Tough Times!

Author: Thierry Altenhoven, PMP

Thierry Altenhoven 100x100

A special keynote was part of the Annual Members Meeting (AMM 2022) on the 10th of February. It was called “Impact Warrior Excellence: How To Master Tough Times!" and was presented by the special guests Michelle Xue Wang and Florian T. Hochenrieder.

Michelle and Florian both inspired and guided us to successfully lead ourselves and our teams through the tough and uncertain future.

Michelle is an award-winning keynote speaker and author of six books. She is a trusted advisor for global top companies, a master of exchange of change projects and sought after executive coach. Michelle describes herself as an impact warrior and survival talent. Today, she helps project leaders, executives and entrepreneurs, with her experience and expertise, to lead themselves and to shape their personal and professional change.

Florian lives and loves effective leadership. He has been doing it for almost 24 years. He delivers strong impulses and best practices for your leadership and business successes. Florian also teaches the SuccessFactors of bold digital leadership. He has successfully guided over 5000 executives and entrepreneurs worldwide to greater leadership and impact.


During the keynote, Michelle and Florian went through 6 pillars, the "6 C", the foundation to act like an excellent impact warrior, along life, the career or projects.



Victory loves preparation…and agility

Before showing how to master tough times by leading ourselves and others for impact and excellence, the environment had to be taken into consideration first.

They reminded us that we live in a VUCA world (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous world). According to Florian, this VUCA world has been existing for a long time. (For example, the Egyptians during the building of the pyramids were already in this world). When he makes a flashback of his life, he also faced a VUCA world at each step of his career. So, it is an usual state of the current reality. That's why he reframed VUCA in a more positive way and translates it with the V for Victory loves preparation, Uncertainty replaced by Unfair advantages in the sense that we are clearly positioned and we create significant value-add for our stakeholders, C for turning Chaos into Clarity and A, 3 times with be Agile, be Adaptable and be Aligned with a great honorable cause.


Lead yourself

To perform the Impact Warrior Excellence, it's all about leading ourselves because the only enemy we have is ourselves. The idea is to stare down the bad rules inside ourselves and to nourish our inner positive and impactful energy. We are able to inspire, enable and lead others by our example.


Y = f(xi) = 6C!

When we talk about impact, it stands for your results, your targets, your objectives, your outcome that you want for yourself, your team, your company and for your life. Michelle and Florian created a formula (see above subtitle). The Y is the impact, it is a function of several factors (xi) influencing this impact. To maximize the impact, it has to reach excellence. Excellence is being effective, being efficient and being elegant at the same time. The 6C are the keys to reach the Impact Warrior Excellence.


80 / 20 / 0 / 0 -> 30 / 30 / 30 / 10

In our daily business but also sometimes in our life, we spend our time through a state of 80, 20, 0, 0. We waste 80% of our time, energy, resources and money on daily emergencies, on mails, on meetings, on tasks, on issues that distract us, get us off track, make us stressed. Just 20% of the time is used for the daily business, the standard work, the activities where we create value for our customers, our stakeholders. At the end, 0% is spent for space for continuous improvement and for strategic projects. And 0% is used to recharge, to re-energize, to stay on a high performance level. Florian discovered what some excellent companies do (excellent means: effective, efficient and elegant). They follow the state of 30, 30, 30, 10. 30% of the time are here for the top issues, mails, tasks, changes of scenarios. 30% (instead of 20) are at disposal to create real value in an excellent manner. 30% can be dedicated for improvements, for Kaizen, for changes. At his company, when Florian gave 4 to 8 hours per week for continuous improvement, for special projects, it was a game changer for him and his employees, letting the potential of each other make an impact on the business. And finally, 10% is a buffer for these 3 areas of work and for self-awareness.


After talking about the environment, the main formula and the repartition of time in business, place to the 6C, pillars of the Impact Warrior Excellence.


Clarity: why (not)?

Know yourself, know your scenario (the Spartans)

Michelle introduced the first C: Clarity. Know yourself, your goal, define your success. To know yourself, ask yourself first: who am I, where I want to go, what are my strengths and weaknesses, which competencies and resources will bring me to my goal, where am I now, where can I get those competencies and resources to bring me to my goal. In a second step, identify your unique niche. A niche can be a domain, an industry, a type of job, in which you are a genius and you can spend hours without having the feeling of work. The third step is to identify a potential market. And the last question to answer: will people pay for it?

Florian brought us further than the typical approach: to know your why, your what and your how. Asking the why but also the why not is better because it permits to identify both sides of your why and to say "no" to the things out of your focus. The same for the what and what not (some tools and methods like Hoshin Kanri, balanced scorecard or OKR method facilitate the answers to these questions). And the same for the how and how not? How do you get things done? You start to think lean, to get into an agile mode.


Courage: W.I.N.

Intelligence preserves. Courage evolves (Frederic II)

The second C is Courage. To illustrate Courage, Michelle told us a part of her youth, expatriating to Germany from China, without knowing the language, faced with a difficult reality to have a first job but with all her courage, she could find her way to success. For Florian, courage is based on what is necessary? and after you ask yourself this question, you get into your fear, you take uncomfortable actions and you consciously step out of your comfort zone. What you discover is that learning moments will happen, especially when it is done with your team, or your private circle. We are the average of the 5 persons we are the most with. So select your destination, your team, your business. Inspire them to get into courage mode, ask them what is necessary for them? And train that again and again, like a courage muscle, with the intention to impact! (The formula W.I.N. will be explained at the end.)


Collaboration: VOPA+

Collaboration determines success (Henry Ford)

Collaboration is the third C and Michelle reminded us that we are all social creatures. We can grow, succeed alone but with a team it is better, bigger, quicker. To be successful, you need to learn to respect others, their interests, their needs. An old Chinese quote says: "Show me your friends and I can tell you who you are". The environment has a huge influence on us and who you spend time with shows who you are and at the same time, determines who you will be and how far you can go. Unsuccessful people talk about people and problems but successful people talk about ideas and the future. Choose your environment, choose your inner circle carefully and be with friends growing with you, supporting you, developing you. Collaboration is key. Florian learnt from a swiss company the new word "collaborACTION". It perfectly represents collaboration, that is about action, collaboraction. From digital leadership, he applies the formula: VOPA+ to succeed in collaboration in business.

V stands for: be Virtually connected (using tools like MS Teams, Miro, meistertask,…).

O stands for: maintain an Open mind. Establish a culture of innovation, a culture of mistakes and errors (where it is OK to fail as you learn from that) because "Failures are treasures".

P stands for: faster Participation. Synergy in the team, strengths, passions, backgrounds are brought from each other.

A stands for: Agility, to be impactful out of the movement and the momentum.

+ stands for: Trust. Trusting yourself, trusting your team, trusting your company, trusting your clients and stakeholders. Trust evolves by living and establishing credibility, by fostering reliability, by living a life of empathy and integrity, and by ideally getting the ego out of the equation.


Consequence: PDCA

Targets are intentions with a deadline

The next C is Consequence. Every action or inaction will have consequences. Don't believe in chance! Luck is the result of hard work and preparation. But how can we break the pattern of negative consequences? It is very simple: just have a plan, see at least three steps ahead. With the well-known tool PDCA (Plan, Do, Check, Act), we can generate the consequences we expect. Discipline is key to ensure these consequences, aligned with your clarity, your courage and the collaboration. Florian shared with us a book "The 12 week year" (From Brian P. Moran, Michael Lennington) that demonstrates a concept to produce efficient consequences.


Concentration: 11111

Do what you hate as if you would love it (Mike Tyson)

Concentration is one of the C to emphasize the Impact Warrior Excellence. Today our attention is requested at every corner of our life or of our work. To be efficient, we have to concentrate on one task after another. To have an optimal concentration on the business, Michelle advised us, for example, to have dedicated time to handle emails, to have phone calls, so only maximum two times a day, not every several minutes.

Florian explained another dimension of Concentration with the formula 11111. He used it in his consulting company with customers: they focused on 1 target group, they solved 1 problem for them, with 1 systematic approach, with 1 sophisticated delivery form and they reached them over 1 prioritized path.

Practice focus and concentration. Find a routine to energize like running, reading, doing a hobby, to focus and to concentrate on yourself.


Combat spirit: OODA

Boldness grows with opportunity (Shakespeare)

Finally after Clarity, Courage, Collaboration, Consequence and Concentration, it's all about Combat spirit.

To have this Combat spirit, apply the OODA formula that stands for Observe, Orient, Decide and then Act upon it. 

To close the meeting, Florian shared his final formula, to master the Impact Warrior Excellence: S M I L E, K I S S and W.I.N.

  • S M I L E: Strategy -> Mission -> Inspiration -> Leadership -> Execution.
  • K I S S: Keep It Simple and Smart, as simple as possible and as smart as necessary, specific, measurable, attractive, realistic and time-framed.
  • W.I.N.: What Is Necessary, as a trigger to get into a bold action mode and to train your courage muscle.


Are you interested to watch all the details of this event? Please watch the video on YouTube: [Click here]

Have you already read the first part of the Annual Members Meeting 2022? If not, please enjoy the article: [Click here]



Thierry Altenhoven, PMP