A Multidimensional Model of Project Leadership

A Multidimensional Model of Project Leadership
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  A MultidimensionalModel of ProjectLeadership J ENNIFER  S. S HANE , P H .D., A.M.ASCE; K ELLY  S TRONG , P H .D.,A.M.ASCE;  AND  D OUGLAS  D. G RANSBERG , P.E., P H .D., M.ASCE  ABSTRACT: According to ASCE  ’  s Vision 2025,  “  to lead and execute complex projectsthat involve many and varied stakeholders and meaningful collaboration, civil engineerswill have to command the multidisciplinary, multicultural, team-building, and leadershipaspects of their work. ”   In the traditional iron triangle of project management, the project leader  ’  s responsibility is to balance cost, schedule, and quality constraints to meet theowner  ’  s needs, which define the scope of the project. The iron triangle has lost much of its validity because it assumes only three dimensions of constraints, when in fact con-straints can arise from multiple dimensions. Therefore, in addition to managing multidis-ciplinary, multicultural teams, civil engineers will have to optimize constraint tradeoffsarising from multiple dimensions. This paper describes a multidimensional construct for  project leadership involving the use of partnerships to manage tradeoffs among dynamic,interconnected project constraints through the exploration of several case studies inwhich a broader definition of partnering has been successfully enacted. I n the traditional iron triangle of projectmanagement, the project leader ’ s responsibil-ity is to balance cost, schedule, and qualityconstraints to meet the owner ’ s needs, whichdefine the scope of the project (Lewis 2005).The iron triangle has lost much of its validitybecause it assumes only three dimensions of con-straints, when in fact constraints can arise from multi-ple dimensions (Project Management Institute 2008).Therefore, in addition to managing multidisciplinary,multicultural teams, civil engineers have to optimizeconstraint tradeoffs arising from multiple dimensions.This paper describes a multidimensional constructfor project leadership involving the use of partnershipsto manage tradeoffs among dynamic, interconnectedproject constraints arising both within and outsidetheprojectteam,acrosstheentireprojectlifecycle,andallalongthevaluechain.Inadditiontothetypicalcost,schedule, and quality deliberations, the nature andsource of financing; global markets for material, labor,and services; political influence of external stakehold-ers; and risk factors beyond cost and schedule must allbe considered in making project leadership decisions.Project managers and their stakeholders clearlyneed to add partnering as a risk mitigation tool along-side critical path methods schedules, quality assur-ance/quality control plans, cost control systems, andscope control protocols. According to ASCE ’ s Vision2025 (ASCE 2009),  “ to lead and execute complexprojects that involve many and varied stakeholdersand meaningful collaboration, civil engineers willhave to command the multidisciplinary, multicul-tural, team-building, and leadership aspects of theirwork. ”  Historically, one of the most common formsof developing collaboration among varied stakeholdersis through the use of partnering.  Leadership and Management in Engineering   A PRIL  2011 1  The term  partnering   has taken on several definitionsover time. The earliest forms of partnering describethe efforts by the project owner to develop a work-friendly relationship with its low-bid constructioncontractors. Research in that area found that the in-vestment of time and a small amount of resources paiddividends in reducing cost and schedule growth and inminimizing postconstruction litigation (Gransberget al. 1999). Recently, partnering has changed torepresent something deeper and more intense thana the workshop and nonbinding project charter modelof the 1990s. Partnering has become a business prac-tice that denotes integrating the needs and preferencesof project stakeholders outside the traditional owner — designer — contractor contractual relationship aroundwhich traditional project management revolves.Public transportation agencies in Australia andNew Zealand use a project delivery method called “ alliancing ”  in which the owner, designer, and builderagree to a contract that specifically excludes litigationas a dispute resolution process and contains an inno-vative distribution of costs and saving to all threeparties (Scheepbouwer and Gransberg, 2010). TheUnited States has not yet reached this level of com-mitment; however, U.S. agencies have defined a needfor noncontractual mechanisms that bring substantiveinput to the project team from third-party stake-holders. Such information sharing is essential to thesuccessful delivery of complex transportation infra-structure (Shane et al. 2010).This paper explores several case studies in which abroader definition of partnering has been successfullyenacted. A full discussion of how partnering can beused to improve management of complex projects isbeyond the scope of this paper but will be madeavailable in the near future as part of the StrategicHighway Research Program (SHRP 2) implementa-tion program. A comprehensive review of the success-ful project management strategies for the majorprojects included in the SHRP 2 R10 project (shownin the box) indicates that project leaders use a broadapproach to partnering for the purposes of  •  Improving information planning and communi-cation, •  Improving social sensitivity and building publicsupport, •  Improving feasibility and facilitating innovativefinancing, and •  Improving sustainability and project performance. PARTNERING AS EFFECTIVE PROJECTMANAGEMENT Partnering with Utilities — New Mississippi RiverBridge in St. Louis The New Mississippi River Bridge project inSt. Louis, Missouri, and East St. Louis, Illinois, con-sists of building a new, four-lane, long-span, cable-stayed bridge across the Mississippi River 1 mile northof the existing Martin Luther King Bridge. In addi-tion, the project includes a new North I-70 inter-change roadway connection between the existing I-70and the new bridge, with further connections to thelocal St. Louis street system at Cass Avenue. On theIllinois side, the project includes a new I-70 connec-tion roadway connection between the existing I-55/64/70 Tri-Level Interchange and the main span andsignificant improvements at the I-55/64/70 Tri-LevelInterchange in East St. Louis, which will connect tothe new I-70 connection leading to the main span.The risk analysis and assessment involved a verythorough, formal process and was started early inthe planning and design phase. Use of the formal riskanalysis process helped the team identify risks at anearly stage, when mitigation steps could still beenacted. A good example is the identification of potential schedule delays involving coordination of design with the railroads. The team devoted $50,000to $200,000 from the project contingency funds tohelp railroads and other utilities hire additional staff  Figure. 1. List of projects A PRIL  2011  Leadership and Management in Engineering  2  to complete designs and project reviews necessary tomaintain the project schedule. This type of partneringarrangement, in which noncontractual partners areincentivized to meet project deadlines, is an excellentexample of how early, mutually beneficial engagementof partners can improve risk management practices. Partnering with the Public: James River Bridge,Richmond, Virginia The I-95 James River Bridge project in Richmond,Virginia, consists of the restoration of the 1.2-km James River Bridge on I-95 through Richmond ’ scentral business district. The bridge is 1.2 km long,six lanes wide, and a maximum of 29.3 m high. Whensrcinally built in 1958, traffic capacity was approx-imately 40,000 vehicles per day. When rebuilt in2002, actual traffic volume was 110,000 vehiclesper day. The contractor proposed to use precon-structed composite units that consisted of a 22-cmconcrete deck over steel girders fabricated nearby.Crews cut the old bridge spans into segments,removed them, and prepared the resulting gaps forthe new composite unit. Lastly, they set the new pre-fabricated unit in place overnight. The project in-cluded supplemental improvements to widen Route1, enhance signalization, and install a high mastlighting system.Partnering with the public, including various stateand city organizations, was very important to VirginiaDepartment of Transportation (VDOT) in the plan-ning stage. VDOT mounted a full-scale public rela-tions and information campaign almost as soon asthe project concept was approved. VDOT made a con-centrated effort to ensure that the residents and busi-ness leaders of Richmond were involved in the processto bring the most suitable solution to restoring struc-tural integrity to the bridges on I-95, which runsthrough the heart of the city. The planning processfrom inception to completion took 3 years. The pri-mary goal was to minimize the impact to the travelingpublic and the community during construction. Thecenterpiece of the public involvement plan was tomodify traveler behavior by influencing them to “ self-detour ”  and avoid the area once constructionhad commenced and to partner with major freighthaulers 2 years before construction started to encour-age them to begin planning to reroute their trucksduring the construction period. The second part of the  “ self-detour ”  plan, for commuter traffic, also com-menced at the outset of the planning phase (Kozel2003). For example, the summer 2001 edition of theI-95 Bridge Restoration Newsletter (VDOT 2001)contained an article warning commuters,  “ If youuse this stretch on I-95 to get home in the evening,you should look for an alternate route once construc-tion begins in 2003. ”  Variable message boards weredeployed throughout the corridor to announce theupcoming lane closures a year in advance.A community advisory group held weekly meet-ings on the progress of the project, and the partneringrelationships made during the planning phase weremaintained during design and construction. VDOTand the contractor were open to making minor adjust-ments in the construction schedule to accommodatedowntown businesses with specific needs, such aschanging the full-closure timing to permit a large de-livery that had to be made during active construction.As a result of the public involvement program ’ s suc-cess, VDOT was presented the American Associationof State Highway and Transportation Officials ExcelAward for Excellence in Public Relations. Partnering with Neighborhoods — Ohio RiverBridges Project, Louisville, Kentucky, andSouthern Indiana The Ohio River Bridges project in Louisville,Kentucky, and Southern Indiana is a complex projectcurrently entering the final stages of the design phase.It consists of two long-span river crossings across theOhio River (one in downtown Louisville, one onthe east side of the metropolitan area), a new down-town interchange in Louisville, a new approach and6.76-km highway on the Indiana side, a new EastEnd approach on the Kentucky side that includes a610-m tunnel, and reconfiguration of existing inter-changes to improve congestion, mobility, and safety.Many issues in this project were related to historicpreservation, with plans submitted to each city,village, and neighborhood group. The final projectwill result in more public land use by converting oldindustrial areas to the new interchange and revertingthe existing interchange land to public parks.The project prompted some long-term land useplanning by local agencies. Extensive analysis duringthe development of the environmental impact state-ment helped with corridor-level planning decisions.The project team made a decision to use a tunnelfor historic preservation of a Frederick Law Olmstedcountry estate design and to mitigate Section 4F (his-torical) issues in that area of the project. Alternativesolutions would have required relocation of the corri-dor alignment.In general, the project has a positive rating inthe community, with 76% of the public at large  Leadership and Management in Engineering   A PRIL  2011 3  supporting the project. There is widespread under-standing of the need for the project. Historic preser-vation teams give credibility to project and helpovercome some of the political opposition. The StateHistoric Preservation Office and local groups meetwith the project team every month. The useof a publicrelations and communication consultant has beenvaluable in coordinating information and providinga central point of contact for public and the media.Another aspect of partnering with local neighbor-hood groups was the implementation of a smartgrowth conference to facilitate a dialogue among his-toric districts, local government agencies, and theproject team. Partnering with Other Government Agencies — Doyle Drive, San Francisco The Doyle Drive project, also known as the PresidioParkway, is a unique project that is the south access tothe Golden Gate Bridge. The Doyle Drive corridor,2.4 km in length, was srcinally built in 1936 tousher traffic through the Presidio military base to con-nect San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge. DoyleDrive is in the Presidio and the Golden Gate NationalRecreation Area and is located in a high seismic hazardzone. There are a number of historic buildings andother considerations in the area. The Presidio waslisted as a National Historic Landmark District in1962 and in 1966 was listed on the National Registerof Historic Places. The project also passes close to anational military cemetery. The project requires a highdegree of partnership with other government agencies,including •  California Department of Transportation, •  San Francisco County Transportation Authority, •  Presidio Trust, •  National Park Service, •  California Department of Veterans Affairs, •  Golden Gate Bridge Highway TransportationDistrict, •  Metropolitan Transportation Commission, and •  Federal Highway Administration.This project was srcinally intended to be let as asingle project. However, the estimated cost of theproject was over a billion dollars. The 2007 fundingplan of for this project included a federal grant,through the Urban Partnership Program, thatrequired congestion-based tolling. This toll wouldincrease and decrease with the amount of traffic onthe Golden Gate Bridge and Doyle Drive. This planwas not well received and was eventually dropped(Cabanatuan 2008; Stonehill 2007):  “ The threats of congestion pricing really forced us to collaborate inways we never thought, ”  was the statement fromthe Mayor of San Francisco after years of battles overfunding (Kuruvila 2009). The Metropolitan Transpor-tation Commission proposed funding of $80 millionof the project if it was matched (Cabanatuan 2008).This match was met with $75 million from theGolden Gate Bridge Highway and TransportationDistrict, $4 million from Marin County ’ s Transporta-tion Program, and $1 million from the TransportationProgram of Sonoma County (Golden Gate BridgeHighway and Transportation District et al. 2008).The final funding for the project came from the 2009American Recovery and Reinvestment Act stimuluspackage. This additional funding made it possibleto begin the project sooner, saving the entire project$115 million. Additionally, the project was  “ re-planned to accommodate an accelerated scheduleto receive this funding ”  and helped prompt the divi-sion of work into eight separate contracts (FederalHighway Administration et al. 2009). Partnering with Financers — Inter-CountyConnector, Washington DC and Maryland The Intercounty Connector (ICC) has been plannedand studied for over 50 years, and its design wasdeveloped with extensive involvement by theMontgomery County and Prince George ’ s Countycommunities in Maryland. The new east — west high-way will cover approximately 30 km and will includethe construction of numerous new highway inter-changes and bridges. The ICC will be a state-of-the-art, toll-operated, multimodal roadway withlimited points of access.The ICC project will provide a myriad of benefits tothe Washington, DC, and Baltimore metropolitanareas. It is intended to increase community mobilityand safety; facilitate the movement between economiccenters of people and goods; provide cost-effectivetransportation infrastructure to serve existing andfuture development that reflects local land use objec-tives; help restore the natural, human, and culturalenvironments changed by past development impacts;and enhance homeland security.The total anticipated cost is approximately$2.57 billion. The project is using multiple fundingsources and will be part of Maryland ’ s tolling networkon completion. Grant Anticipated Revenue Vehicles(GARVEE) bonds, Maryland Department of Trans-portation Pay-as-You-Go program, special federalfunds, Maryland Transportation Authority bonds, A PRIL  2011  Leadership and Management in Engineering  4  Maryland general fund transfers, and a TransportationInfrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA)loan are all sources of funding that are being usedfor this project. A breakdown of the financing is asfollows: •  $750 million in GARVEE bonds, •  $715.6 million in Authority toll revenue bondsand cash, •  $516 million in TIFIA loans, •  $264.9 million in state general funds, •  $180 million in state transportation trust funds, •  $19.3 million in special federal funds, and •  $16.9 million in additional funds from GARVEEsale.The total amount committed is $2.46 billion, andunidentified final funding for Contract  D (outside the6-year program) is $103.2 million.The ability of project managers to meet the require-ments of different financing entities will becomeincreasingly important in the future. The nature of the funding will influence schedule, budget, anddesign decisions in all phases of the project life cycle.In addition, project managers will need more admin-istrative skills to properly manage and audit expensesand revenues attributable to different funding sources. Partnering with Industry — Northern GatewayAlliance, New Zealand The Northern Gateway Toll Road was the first tollroad in New Zealand to be fully electronic, and theconstruction project was one of New Zealand ’ s largest,most challenging, and most complex to date. Itextends the four-lane Northern Motorway 7.5 km fur-ther north from Orewa to Puhoi through historicallyrich and diverse landscapes, steep topography, andlocal streams and provides an alternative to the steeptwo-lane winding coastal route through Orewa andWaiwera. The US$360 million extension of StateHighway 1 was constructed to provide a straight andsafe drive between Auckland and Northland. Theroad, which opened in January 2009, has become avisual showcase of environmental and engineeringexcellence.Project investigation started in the early 1990s, wasput on hold, and started again with granting of con-sents (permits) and designations at the end of 2003.The remainder of 2003 and 2004 were used for pro-curement. Funding for the project was not yet in placeat the start of the project, and the use of existing roadsas temporary bypasses for traffic was challenged incourt. Extension of the use of these alternative roadswas approved on a year-by-year basis depending onproof of construction of the Northern Gateway. Asthe Highway Authority did not have the requiredfunds, a business case was made to the Treasury, whichfinally lent the remaining funds to the HighwayAuthority in exchange for tolling rights for 35 yearsduring the design phase. Risk for this income wastransferred to the Treasury.Technically challenging aspects of the projectincluded tunneling, which had not been done bythe agency in decades; a largely unknown geotechnicalsituation; and building on environmentally protectedland. Construction of the road through protected areaswas challenged, and solutions like the twin tunnelwere used to minimize the environmental impact.All the uncertainties in the project, including thenecessitated early start of construction, made design – bid – build delivery impossible; essential risk transferwas deemed to make design — build too expensive.Additionally, although a public — private partnershipwould have been possible from a business case point of view, there was considerable political unease with thismethod of delivery. Alliancing, however, gave theoption to start construction after a very preliminarydesign scope was established. The alliance partnerswere aware of the fact that funding approval was pend-ing, and the risk that the project could be halted wasshared.  “ Pure ”  alliancing was used, as opposed tocompetitive alliancing, which is more common inAustralia. Pure alliancing and competitive alliancingdiffer in procurement. In pure alliancing, the ownershortlists to preferred suppliers on nonprice attributes,which then starts the design and produces a targetoutturn cost (TOC). In a competitive alliance, thereare two competing teams producing a TOC, and thenthe evaluation is done, incorporating a cost compo-nent. During design, the suppliers are paid a feefor intellectual property. After award, both forms of alliancing become  “ true ”  alliances with a cost sharemodel.The Northern Gateway Alliance was formed byTransit New Zealand in 2004 to design, manage,and construct the Northern Gateway Toll Road. Eightorganizations make up the alliance, each memberplaying a critical role in ensuring an innovative,efficient, and cost-effective project. The alliance part-ners are owner-participant New Zealand TransportAgency (formerly Transit), Fulton Hogan, LeightonContractors, URS New Zealand, Tonkin & Taylor,Boffa Miskell VSL, and United Group Limited.Within the alliance there are multitudes of special-izations. New Zealand Transport Agency develops,  Leadership and Management in Engineering   A PRIL  2011 5
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