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How PMO supports difficult SAP Programmes
Avtar Davatwal14-Mar-2022 09:51:084 min read

Impossible Missions Force for SAP Projects

I get they may not be everyone’s cup of chai, but I thought the Mission Impossible films were ‘Lit’.

According to Merriam-Webster, the slang word lit has been in the public domain since 1910. Imagine if all those Kool Kids knew they were going around telling everyone they're pissed!

Anyhow, back to the Impossible Missions Force (IMF) - the shadowy espionage agency from the Mission Impossible films.

One sec, play the theme tune in your head...

You did it didn’t you! Isn’t it brilliant the way we are able associate snippets of music back to certain films, events or people?

Definitely iconic…and so it should be. It’s been beamed through our television sets since 1966 when the original Mission Impossible TV series aired. When the final episode of the TV series eventually aired on March 30th 1973, I bet some people must have thought it was all over!

A few other theme tunes from the broadcast world come to mind as being equally those iconic - Rocky, Superman, A-Team and 007. What are your favourites?

Moving from audio side of things and back to the visual, across the films there are some great fighting sequences, car chases, double agents twists and of course - ‘those’ face masks. If you were to watch all 6 relaunched films you'd have to put aside 12 hours 49 minutes (ignoring the bonus scenes).

Why does that matter?

Well, because despite watching the repeats a number of times, I can’t really recall specific scenes without some Googling of the Neocortex.

However, there is one particular scene that pops into my mind on a fairly regular basis. More specifically, the ending of a scene. It is part way through MI2, so Hunt has already chosen to accept the mission.

What follows is a 5 minute conversation between Mission Commander Swanbank and Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise to you and me). The Commander is giving the Agent orders for next steps in the mission. The agent is visibly hesitant…

Commander; “You mean it will be difficult”

Agent; “Very”

Commander; “Well this is not mission difficult Mr Hunt it’s mission impossible, difficult should be a walk in the park for you”

Why the right SAP experience matters

When you join a Project or Programme, a client will be basically paying to fill a demand gap they have.

After all, if the capability, skillsets or capacity they required was available in-house, why would they need you?

The client is then likely to make an evaluation that results in a significant decision. It will influence the funds are they willing to release.

"Based on the requirements, what expertise is required to get the job done?"

Of course, other factors like budgets will also influence this - but you don’t fulfil a demand for a Project Manager with a PMO Analyst because they cost less! The right experience matters.

But - all of us 'started from the bottom now we’re here’. ‘Here’ then must be unique to us all.

Why? Because to get here, we have picked up very different experience points.

Once you have enough points, you can move to the next level! Your own Entry Gate Criteria.

Go with actions does not apply!!!

Simon Pegg’s character in the Mission Impossible films - Benji - is a good example of what I mean by ‘experience points to level up’ (you need to watch MI 4, 5 and 6 to get that).

Are you stepping up to SAP project challenges?

At some point in an SAP deployment lifecycle, it will hit issues or blockers. There will be challenges that need overcoming to keep the schedule on track. It will get difficult. When you get there (and you will) you have to decide what approach to take. 

Chill though, there are only three options:

  • Step forward. Understand the challenge. Come up with a solution.
  • Shy Away. Cross your fingers and hope someone else will sort it – after all, every project has those late night workers don’t they.
  • Do nothing. Carry on like nothing’s happened. Avoid acknowledgement of the challenge. Ignorance is bliss right?

Personally, I reckon number 3 is the worst the options. Ignorance is not bliss!

Now; there is another way here. I can’t stand it so it’s not getting a number on my list. You could always turn to the dark-art of bullshit and hope it becomes your ally. If you don’t have the right number of points for the level you are playing, the darkside might be your only option!

If you find yourself in this scenario perhaps consider replaying some prior levels. Bolster up your experience with some more experience points.

If that doesn’t appeal to you, maybe invest in the IMF Face Mask Making machine. Eventually, you’re going to need it.

How to be Ethan Hunt on your SAP project

Back to the Client.

Remember, they are paying because there is a gap to fill. But, they are also paying a price based on what you can bring to the table.

Either you or your organisation has positioned you as someone who can get the job done - someone who has enough experience points in the bag for that level.

So, the next time you receive a message that will self-destruct in 5 seconds, consider this.

You are there to be Ethan Hunt. That is what the client has signed up for. You’re the person that should be able to deal with Mission Impossible.

Difficult should be a walk in the park for you.