The project is the core of our business

More than 80 project managers participate in the 1st Global Virtual PM/CPM Conference 2018.

How will project managers work with the business units, regions and the NoE in the future? Why does the “four eyes principle” not separate but rather connect project managers and commercial project managers? How can be we close to customers, cost efficient and commercially successful during project execution? Roughly 80 project managers and commercial project managers from all over the world discussed these questions at the 1st Global Virtual PM/CPM Conference 2018.


Thorsten Heidack (left) and Andreas Claes are happy with the success of the 1st Global Virtual PM/CPM Conference.

Virtual communication – efficient and economic

One question in particular had been occupying Andreas Claes and Thorsten Heidack in recent weeks: How can we bring project managers and commercial project managers from every continent together? A “conventional”, multi-day conference at an event venue would have been too time- and cost-intensive. So the Head of Project Management and the Global Head of Commercial Project Management decided why not communicate with each other virtually using the we.connect platform and the digital tools vitero and webex. Together with the PM Campus they developed the idea of a virtual conference, which went “online” on June 28.

“We are not yet acting as one company, one team,” explained Marcel Fasswald, COO of the Industrial Solutions business area during a panel discussion. “We can only be commercially successful in the future with a common understanding of the tasks of the business units, the regions, the NoE and the project managers. As the Board we will define clear rules for this.”


The panel discussion participants in Essen formulate a clear objective.

For Liege Robson, CEO of the Network of Excellence (NoE), this teamwork is indispensable. “We need to leverage all our strengths. With our Global NoE network supporting the BU’s Contracts and the regions having close contact to our customers, plus, being part of Project Execution Team, through the full life cycle of a project from engineering to service. Therefore the responsibility for our project execution lies primarily with the Project Managers and Commercial Project Managers.”

Panel discussion and eight workshops

Alongside the panel discussions, the digital conference focused on eight workshops. The topics on the agenda had been selected in advance in consultation with the regions and included process harmonization, global resource management, daproh and EcoSys, training & personal development and the Utilization Planning Tool. Some of the workshops were organized and run by colleagues from the regions.


All the conference participants were asked to complete a statement as a team challenge. Our Indian colleagues found a humorous solution: Project manager Jitendra Patil (l.) and Commercial Project Manager Mohasin Mujawar work hand in hand as Pilot and Co-Pilot.

Andreas Claes and Thorsten Heidack want to expand communication between project managers and commercial project managers on we.connect further. “We will of course make all the information and documents on the individual topics available there. The same applies for the video recordings of the individual workshops and panel discussions. It would be great if all project managers were to make intensive use of this new community as a discussion and info platform in their daily work. Working in the network enables us to learn from each other more quickly and integrate the cultural and local view into projects better.” It’s no surprise that the next Global Virtual PM/CPM Conference won’t be too long in coming.