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PM Essence

Starting New Projects The 7Ps and 7Ds

By - Navneet Bhushan

Navneet Bhushan

Navneet Bhushan (Navneet) is a Founder Director of Crafitti Consulting. He is the leading expert on innovation and principal author of Strategic Decision Making- Applying the Analytic Hierarchy Process, Springer-Verlag, UK, published as part of the Decision Engineering Series and featured at the Harvard Business School. He consults on strategy, innovation and intellectual property. He can be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Starting New Projects

A very consistent opinion of a large number of experienced people is that good managers are not necessarily good leaders, i.e. not all good managers are good leaders. This somehow has been construed in popular memes that propagate in our social consciousness, that good managers definitely cannot be good leaders. This is definitely incorrect. One can, in my opinion, be a good leader and good manager at the same time. One of the traits of good leaders is that they create and pursue “the new”. Typically pursuance of new is risky. However, we know, people who create and pursue the new, create the change. As per M.K. Gandhi, “they become the change that they want to see in the world” they pursue new ideas.

What one should have, if one really wants to pursue an idea? If you want to start something new - you should have 7 Ps.

7Ps of starting something new

The 7 parameters can be developed if we believe in ourselves. We can become the initiators of new projects. However, we should look at each new project through the lens of these 7 parameters.

1. Passion Long term sustainability will require passion - Passion creates a momentum in you that overcomes all possible naysayers and inertias of why something will not work.

2. Patience Take it that there will be delays, difficulties and outright demeaning people - with smiles that mean mockery - however please also remember - each such smile also hides a fear - fear of "if you succeed..." then those smiles have to become awe ... To override all these smiles - build patience in your system.

3. Perseverance King Bruce and the spider the story will start making complete sense to you - there is no other method than learning from the spider - on rebuilding your net - again and again even if you keep on failing.

4. Planning is actually an essential activity. The leaders understand it, pure idea guys do not. I suggest a minimum level of planning is essential. Prepare a key list of activities and follow up on them over a period of time.

5. Pride is something that I learnt recently. Initially, I somehow never thought about pride in doing what you are starting. However, actually pride in doing the change is so important that it can actually lead you to build on other Ps. Originally I had 5Ps later I added two more Ps - Purpose and Planet.

6. Purpose is the main starting point. It has to come from within, the purpose of what you want to create.

7. Planet is the key to defining your purpose. If the purpose is not aligned with the planet Earth - the Nature - it will not lead to a sustainable venture or a successful creation of change that you want to create.

So if you want to create change in the world that you want to see - build on the 7Ps!

After 7Ps, the parameters that will make you start the New, comes the actual process of doing it, I propose the 7Ds of Doing.

7Ds of how to do something new

1. Discover - Your business, your market, your social network, your project, your customers or even yourself. This springs from your purpose within the constraints of the Planet in 7Ps.

2. Define - What are the key objective and function that the project has to deliver? What are the key outputs and messages of your project and for whom? What key problem of the world you will be solving?

3. Describe - Elaborate what you defined by describing in detail the enduser value or customer value that your project/business/system is creating or will be creating.

4. Design - This is the most crucial part of the process. Design need to balance multiple extremes making your business system such that these extremes merge. Just to elaborate, let us look at Toyota's design philosophy of merging opposite extremes. They call it the J-factor - balancing extremes and working on AND as an operating word. The Toyota (The Toyota Motors) Design Philosophy is one of merging two extremes by producing Vibrant- Clarity, Seamless-Anticipation, Intriguing-Elegance, Incisive- Simplicity, Leading-Edge Finesse, Perfect-Imbalance, Freeform- Geometrics and Integrated Component Architecture.

5. Develop - Once you have designed your idea/business/product/venture you need to develop it. Develop the messages/ communications for all possible channels - print, TV, online, email, social networks, micro blog, blog of your company, SMS, and online videos and all possible channels. Also the business model/project output needs to be tested by experimenting in real markets.

6. Deploy - Start deploying with an initial design in mind for creating Tipping Point by finding Mavens/salesmen/ connectors in the networks of your choice, but before that make your product/service stick. If you follow Duncan Watts of Small world fame, may be just start by telling the crowd.

7. Deduce - Whatever is happening you need to find out how it is happening. Develop and carry out a measurement metric for Word of Mouth Marketing (WOMM) potentially a combination of Net Promoter Score and Tipping Point framework can be used as a starting point.

Use 7P 7D Model of starting on your idea! Believe me it is doable as I am doing it. You can start new projects besides managing the projects through the 7P 7D framework.