Businesses planning some major roll-out initiatives, such as re-branding or reconstructing your network, or upgrading to meet new environmental regulations, need to be confident that they will get maximum value for their money?
Problems often arise due to a combination of factors including lack of time, poor appraisal of the potential or ‘toeing the corporate line’ just because “that is how we have always done it”! More critically, there is often little or no review phase following major investments, in order to see how effective a design or layout has been and to incorporate lessons learnt into future projects.
To avoid critical development pitfalls all it takes is for some simple processes to be incorporated throughout the project’s development and implementation.
- Start with an accurate analysis of a location’s potential based on known facts and available data.
- Make sure the designers are fully aware of the functional objectives
- Strong project management at every step ensures everyone in the design team understands their role and how they impact on others.
- Make sure that you are using a set of corporate rules and guidelines based on past performance, benchmarking and facts, rather than supposition – and which is clear and understandable to everyone involved.
- Make sure there is a strong team ethic between all parties – including contractors and suppliers – with a commitment to deliver the best possible solution.
- And finally, it is essential to have an open and blame-free culture to be able to admit mistakes and take positive lessons from them.
Creating a step change in your performance
To really achieve a step change in performance of your project development process it requires all of the following essentials;
- High performance teamwork between the functions required to conceive, design, engineer, build, launch and operate a retail outlet.
- World class processes, focusing the efforts of the team on the ultimate business objective and ensuring optimal time to market.
- Stretching targets to challenge the professionalism and management capabilities of every member of the team and act as a catalyst for change.
Too often I have seen different parts of the same organisation with objectives that will take them in entirely opposing directions, inevitably leading to the overall objective being sidelined. This is where strong interactive project management at all phases is absolutely vital to get all the component parts of the team pulling in the same direction.
To really succeed and deliver the potential benefits requires commitment to the aims of the process by all involved. Everyone must be able to understand and identify with the process improvements, savings and enhanced value.
There needs to be complete freedom to express opinions and ideas, however extreme they may appear to be. More good ideas will always emerge than would be otherwise the case and, you never know, one of those crazy ideas could be the one that produces some serious results!
Barry Wyeth of Wyeth Projects has 20 years’ experience in the retail petroleum market with Petrofina, Total and, most recently with Wyeth Projects Services, a specialist consultancy working in the retail petroleum sector.