This playbook is intended for senior leaders who want to create better business results when prioritizing a project portfolio, for portfolio managers who are frustrated by the limits of ROI analysis, and anyone who thinks that current approaches to picking the best projects aren’t working. It’s for people like Sallee Peterson, Senior VP Global Customer Support at VeriSign, who faced a seemingly intractable problem: She had asked her global team of nearly 200 support representatives to submit ideas on how to improve customer service. She was pleased—and overwhelmed—with the results: After culling through the submissions, she and her leadership team identified 46 innovative projects. Unfortunately, they could only afford about six to ten projects. As Sallee explained, the traditional process would have been to simply have her leadership team pick the projects, explaining the selections to employees through a series of management briefings. But Sallee wanted to try something different: She wanted to engage her global team in selecting the best possible projects. She used a game plan from this project prioritization playbook enabling her team to collaboratively identify the top seven of the 46 projects. And that’s not all they achieved. The incredibly high degree of employee engagement in the process and their support of the resulting choices led Sallee to estimate that VeriSign saved more than three months of implementation time—a truly Epic Win.
Created from more than a decade of experience working with Fortune 500 and other progressive organizations, the game plans described in this playbook show you how to harness the amazing power of collaborative play and serious games to prioritize your organization’s project portfolio. The result is your Epic Win: your project portfolio prioritized to both business objectives and customer needs with an organization motivated to implement the same.
Using the game plans described in this playbook, you’ll be able to change stakeholder “me” perspectives to “we” perspectives. That’s because “winning” these game requires working with others, forming alliances, thinking strategically, and structured negotiations on the highest impact results for the company. Conteneo’s games enable employees to rise above organizational silos and think holistically about what is right for the company.
The Conteneo collaboration games described in this playbook are fast and easy to play and scale to organizations of all sizes. They will enable you not only to choose the best projects for execution but also ensure that projects have the resources required for success. The book’s game plans focus on strategic, longer-term priorities along with tactical, near-term projects.
The book includes a discussion of common challenges associated with traditional approaches to portfolio management and explains how to choose a game plan to eliminate those challenges and select the right plan for your company. It also includes guidelines for producing a successful game event and provides case studies of VeriSign, Hewlett-Packard, and Daimler Financial Services. No matter what your unique situation is, this playbook will show you a better way to prioritize your project portfolio that results in an Epic Win.
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About the Author
Luke Hohmann is the Founder and CEO of Conteneo, Inc. (formerly The Innovation Games® Company). Luke’s playfully diverse background of life experiences and his background in strategic planning and decision making in large and small companies uniquely prepared him to design and produce serious games. Luke is the author of the Epic Wins series—playbooks that show companies how to harness the amazing power of collaborative play and Conteneo’s serious games to super power Epic Wins in business. Luke graduated magna cum laude with a B.S.E. in computer engineering and an M.S.E. in computer science and engineering from the University of Michigan. In addition to data structures and artificial intelligence, he studied cognitive psychology and organizational behavior. He is also a former National Junior Pairs Figure Skating Champion. .In his spare time, Luke likes roughhousing with his four kids and long runs in the Santa Cruz mountains to burn off his wife’s cooking. He’s an old-school Silicon Valley entrepreneur and is building Conteneo to change the world.