Seasoned business leader and educator, Jeff Whippo explains that a "heavyweight project team" comprises of individuals from various functional groups working under the authority of a team leader with –
- Great experience and expertise in the project area
- Has sig nificant clout in the organization
- Is often co-located with the team to ensure improved integration and coordination amongst the team members
Whippo further explains that there are many important characteristics of heavyweight project teams. He describes that heavyweight teams have a well-defined Business Charter that is designed and approved by senior management. Co-location and cross-functionality are also important to heavyweight project teams where most the time members from individual functional areas and co-located to the same place for the duration of the project.
Additionally, Jeff Whippo says that heavyweight project managers are also unique in that the project is led by a senior manager from the organization that has authority to pull resources when required, and also has access to and responsibility for the work of everyone involved in project. Furthermore, he says that ownership, accountability and commitment are additional characteristics of heavyweight project teams.
Jeffery Whippo says that the traditional project teams at Eli Lilly consisted of members who worked on 4-5 different projects simultaneously across all of the company with the functional manager of these project teams having higher authority over the team members than the team lead. He indicates that multiple projects were being managed by a single project manager, and the functional team was also assigned to four five different projects.
Jeff concludes that because of this there was little accountability on a project-by-project basis. There were no systems to track resources and measure progress of individuals. Hence it was impossible to diagnose specific reason for delay in detail. Therefore, he explains that this may alienate the rest of the organization and can hurt other development activities.
About Jeffery Whippo
Jeffery Whippo is a professional educator and developer of people, teams, and leaders. He is a well-educated professional who has attended California Coast University, Boston University, California State Polytechnic University, Community College of the Air Force, and Citrus College. He also worked as a Combat Intelligence Specialist for the USAF for almost 4 years. He contributes to a number of charitable causes including the Jimmy Fund, Junior Diabetes, Goodwill, and American Veterans.
Jeffery is an avid learner who loves to study ancient history and psychology. He is also a veteran member of the VFW.