A guest post by John Cropper, Director of Capacity Building Solutions
How do you help people doing good to do it better? This has always been one of the main challenges with training NGOs in project management. Most NGO staff working on projects work long days and often long nights. They spend a lot of time in communities, on the road and in difficult and often hard to access locations. In addition, they often have to respond to multiple and often unpredictable demands ranging from humanitarian crises to unplanned visits from HQ or donors. It is like juggling but with an ever varying number of balls in the air at the same time.
This is hardly an ideal environment for learning: the lack of time, varying locations and constant workload. It also adds to the cost of training as you need to bring everyone together, rent a venue, pay for hotels and per diems. Plus, everyone has to put off working for a week which can be a challenge for some. In other words, training in project management can make schedules worse instead of better!
All of these barriers may restrict training opportunities for some people who need it the most. The many difficulties and costs can sometimes limit an NGO’s ability to train many of its field staff and partner organisations.
Wrestling with this problem for a long time led to us creating a completely new approach to learning and training: PMD Pro Flex. It is almost completely self-paced so you can learn when and where you want to – all you need is an internet connection. PMD Pro Flex is also mobile ready, so you don’t need to access it via a laptop. You’ll use videos, eLearning, reading, assignments and interactions with other participants and a facilitator to develop your project management skills. This flexibility and approach is why we have called it PMD Pro Flex!
There is also flexibility about how quickly you can finish. The course encourages you to progress by giving you points for every task you complete. You’ll also earn points by commenting and sharing. The quicker you earn points, the sooner you can finish!
I believe that this approach to learning offers organizations the opportunity to train those who are working and supporting their projects: the project universe. Why restrict learning to one or two? It is now easier and a lot more cost effective to really develop a critical mass of project management expertise and leverage this to improve project delivery.
Click here to learn more about PMD Pro Flex and find out when the next intakes are happening.