Understanding Project Negotiations And Conflict Management

Learning Outcome 1

1.Itemisation of each learning Outcome

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LO1

1.Summary

The first learning outcome targeted at making me gain a deeper understanding on ways that I could operate within diverse and complex projects initiated by either a government or non-governmental organization. Most importantly, the key areas of focus were to understand arrangement of contracts important for ICT, agreements, and managed services.

2. Evidence

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Both the client and the project manager are immensely affected by variations, arbitration, claims, and disputes. There is a necessity for the project manager to avoid getting involved in disputes with customers since it would destroy firm’s public image (Aibinu and Jagboro, 2002). Stubborn clients also have an adverse impact on the organization since they make other customers to be disadvantaged. In most cases, the firms fear dealing with such clients in their line of business.  

Consequence of disputes, Claims, Variations, and Arbitration contribute to project delays. For instance, the project manager and the contractor engage in a dispute, it is likely that the completion of the project will be achieved as scheduled (Anbari, et al. n.d). In addition, a delay in the contract may lead to arbitration, litigation, disputes, complete abandonment, and total overrun of the project. In resolving these issues, it rests with the managers of the projects to make sure that that one is competent in all aspects of projects negotiations (Sphere, 2018).

LO2

1.Summary

The outcome required that after covering my module, I could now understand ways of using influence factors, persuasion, and logic to analyse common arguments. I can now apply my ability to competing stakeholder agendas

2.Evidence

The negotiation procurement can be based on the topology of NCTP (Novelty, complexity, technology, and pace).  There is a need for the project team to come together and work towards attaining a shared objective of the project.  It is also necessary to understand that if the people have the knowledge of the project purpose, they are likely to demonstrate more interest to take part in the project (Peña-Mora and Tamaki, 2001).  The forms of project procurement are reliant on the need of the procurement. Also, I have learned that the perspective of complex product services helps in delivering the services and products together. More values as well as the intangible benefits are recognised in such a point of view (Australia National Audit Office, 2012).

LO3

1.Summary

The outcome required that I understand how to differentiate project negotiation, conflict management, as well as arrange stakeholders involved in different projects. Doing this requires a better understanding of technology standards and asset lifecycle

Learning Outcome 2

2.Evidence

Commercial project management and commercial planning play a role in the identification, setting, and attainments of the objectives of an organization in a sophisticated and planned way.  I have learned how to identify current situation and making necessary steps as required (Kerzner & Kerzner, 2017). In my previous company, I found myself applying five important keys involved in commercial projects planning and management, which comprise the supply, staffing, cost control, environmental issues, and safety. I understand that time that one spend during the negotiation can be increased via the delays of conflicts, where the forms of the contract can be used as checklist for the establishment of the negotiation strategies (Sphere, 2018). I can now prevent conflicts that might arise in the course of the stage of the construction. I will do this to minimize or eliminate issues.

Furthermore, I have gained an effective communication that is necessary in the commercial negotiation process and projects. There are different ways of identifying as well as reconciling the objects that are inconsistent and conflicting and drivers, which develop, mange, and sustain communications and relationships with major stakeholders (Kerzner, 2013). In applying effective communication also helps in the delivery of the negotiations in the tactical manner, whose inclusion can be made in the pragmatic approach (Ury & Fisher, 2012). It also helps in enhancing relationships among the parties involved in commercial negotiations and projects. During the communication, there is a need for understanding the processes involved in the negotiation and the manner in which it can be improved. In overall, I can now play the role of a project manager within the negotiations and in the delivery of the business towards success based on my ability to communicate effectively.

LO4

1.Summary

The outcomes involve understanding and applying methods on how to identify and reconcile any consistencies among conflicting objects. The objectives as well as drivers are important for developing, maintaining, and managing a strong communication among stakeholders.

2.Evidence

I have experienced a problem of ensuring a proper way of resolving the conflicts among the stakeholders and clients to enhance trust in the commercial negotiations. An increase in the trust of the international audience may result in the rise in the global acceptance of the products and the services. I now understand that trust plays a big role in the resolution of conflicts. When there is trust, the growth of the business is tremendous which, in turn, leads to an increased goodwill of the firm. In effect, the organization gains popularity and the brand loyalty in increased. In future, I will rely on social capital to make decisions concerning the business’ total worth.

Learning Outcome 3

 

LO5

1.Summary

Gain the ability to explain the possible consequences like to arise from delays, disruptions, and any changes to already planned activities. Gain understanding of methods for claims variations, liquidated damages and any other associated arbitration and entitlements

2.Evidence

The role of negotiation relies on the conflicts raised, where the conflicts differ in different domains of the project. Before any negotiations are made, it is necessary for the project manager to consult with the key stakeholders, projects team, and clients to realize the effective outcomes. Proper project planning is needed to ensure it is done effectively and accomplished in the stipulated timeframe. Also, I gained insight concerning the reasons for the occurrence of the conflicts. It may because of levels of resources; uncertainty levels in the objectives of the project, separating, and rewards.  

LO6

1.Summary

Gain the ability to evaluate different project management tools in order to avoid and resolve conflict through various negotiation solutions.

2.Evidence

I have gained a comprehensive understanding of the aspects of rebalancing, diversification, asset allocation, return on investment calculations, evaluation of the capital budget, equivalent annual cost comparison as applied to project management frameworks and standards. Any changes the standards and frameworks may reflect the overall delivery of the project negatively or positively. Thus, there is a need of for the project to be manipulative or have acceptable changes to ensure that the deliveries fulfil the project outputs and goals.

Diversification plays a substantial role in the management of the project. It refers to the technique, which makes it possible for the manager to examine the project and analyse the best solution that is appropriate for the portfolio management. Importantly, diversifying the activities in the project management is important for the effectiveness of the standards and frameworks employed.

2.Discussion and Conclusion

At the time of undertaking my course, I started thinking about the idea of how I could apply all the learning outcomes. I can confidently say that I am grateful for having signed for this course and the far that I have managed to come. This is because I have succeeded in gaining skills and knowledge that I had not gained before starting this course. Furthermore, it is imperative to point out that I am currently my future profession of not only becoming a good project manager, but also a good leader. In my first week for instance, I gained an introduction to commercial projects and types of negotiations that occurs within such complex projects. Commercial planning depends on several processes to help define the direction, the strategy, as well decision-making when it comes to allocation of limited resources. I now understand governments or non-governmental organizations can implement commercial project s such as office building, industrial shops, retail shops, and restaurants. This implies that in future, I will act as a project manager to build facilities such as shops. Besides, I will have to understand that a project can only become successful when I consider five important aspects such as environmental issues, safety, cost controls, supply, and staffing.

Learning Outcome 4

The more I have attended weekly readings and participated in different activities. Attending of weekly lectures provided me with opportunities to learn and participate in group work. For example, during week 2, we covered the theory of negotiation and negotiation in practice. Most importantly, the lecture was linked to the output of structural negotiation and ways of settling different conflicts that arises when implementing a project. One of my first hand experienced involved reviewing the theory as outlined by Alfredson and Cungu (2008) in order to negotiate among teams coming from different backgrounds. Apparently, negotiations should incorporate and become part of a policymaking in projects. I will ensure that in any of my future career, I consider developing policies and integrate negotiations.

Furthermore, the learning outcome to explain and apply methods of identifying and reconciling objectives brings out the need for commercial negotiations to depend on soft and interpersonal skills. While serving as an assistant coordinator in my group, I found myself developing communication skills. Just as indicated in the foregoing section, commercial projects are complex and bring on board teams from different background. Working in such environment to avoid conflict, would require that I understand how to communicate effectively. Participation in this module has therefore, positioned me as a better communicator (Walker, & Lloyd-Walker, 2015).   

Lloyd-Walker and Walker (2015) thinking concerning collaborative efforts of project managers in project management really stood out for me. Previously, I have had a chance of applying different roles according to the nature of a project. Depending on the conflict and projects, any manager must be ready to come out and negotiate with all stakeholders involved in implementation of a project. What Lloyd-Walker and Walker implied is that managers lead different groups that come from different historical background (Stagg, 2018). Among these groups are stakeholders, owners of the project, suppliers, experts, and analysis. Bringing them together requires a kind on knowledge and understanding of how projects work from the execution to a closure.  Furthermore, the fact that everyone has grown up in a different culture, it is inevitable to experience conflicts. One person that stands at a better position to bring everyone on board would be the project manager.

Most of my previous behaviours have revolved around dealing with small teams of five people. I am now grateful to have covered this course not just for my own benefit, but also for the company that I seek to work for in future. I tend to now think that I will have a chance to apply the same principles in real life situation. Most importantly, I have come to appreciate four ways of solving conflicts.

Learning Outcome 5

It is now my hope that in future, I will try to put all that I have learnt into practice. My strong perception comes from the fact that in everyday life, people, businesses, and the government are trying to implement different degrees of projects. My skills will definitely come in handy when I start working in any capacity that involves working in a team to solve conflict. Most importantly, the responsibility I have had a chance to gain in my coursework has been a turning point for me to learn and transform myself into a better person.

While studying at CQUniversity Australia this year, I got an opportunity to register for a unit in commercial project negotiation. I have achieved several goals that I had developed some negative attitude on how I could attain them. Most importantly, I have managed to gain cognitive, technical and creative skills, conduct independent research, and take ethical and professional responsibility in my previous work (Khaitan, 2016). Besides, after going three 11 weeks module, I can confidently say that I have managed to not only understand but also practise four key outcomes of this course. According to the outcome of the course, I now have the ability to describe complex projects, use logic to evaluate arguments and resolve conflicts, and identify differences conflict management and engagement with different stakeholders (PMI, 2013).  Furthermore, I can explain the impact of delays in projects and evaluate possible tools to assist in project management.

References:

Aibinu, A., &  Jagboro, G. (2002) The Effects of Construction Delays on Project Delivery in Nigerian Construction Industry. International Journal of Project Management, vol. 20, pp. 593-599.

Alfredson T., &Cungu A. (2008) Negotiation Theory and Practice [Online]. Available at org/docs/up/easypol/550/4-5_negotiation_background_paper_179en.pdf”>https://www.fao.org/docs/up/easypol/550/4-5_negotiation_background_paper_179en.pdf [accessed 5 May 2018]

Anbari, FT, Giammalvo P, Jaffe P, Letavec C, & Merchant R. (n.d) The Chunnel Project”. PMI Case Studies in Project Management [Online]. Available at https://www.pmi.org/~/media/PDF/Academic/case%20studies/Chunnel%20Project.ashx  [accessed 5 May 2018]

Australia National Audit Office (2012) Developing and managing contracts – Getting the right outcome, achieving value for money. Better Practice Guide.

 Kerzner H. (2013) Project Management: A Systems Approach to Planning, Scheduling, and Control, 11th Edition.  Hoboken, USA: John Wiley & Sons.

Kerzner, H., & Kerzner, H. R. (2017) Project management: a systems approach to planning, scheduling, and controlling. John Wiley & Sons.

Khaitan (2016) An Alternative Dispute Resolution For Variations in Construction Contracts [Online]. Available at https://www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=6742345e-1cc5-4d93-aded-f875f8b23367 [accessed 5 May 2018]

Lloyd-Walker, B. & Walker, D. (2015) Collaborative project procurement arrangements. 2015. Project Management Institute.

Lloyd-Walker, B. & Walker, D. (2015) Collaborative project procurement arrangements. Project Management Institute.

Peña-Mora F., and Tamaki T. (2001) Effect of Delivery Systems on Collaborative Negotiations for Large -Scale Infrastructure Projects. Journal of Management in Engineering, vol. 17, pp.105-121

PMI (2013) A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK Guide) 5th Edition. USA: Project Management Institute.

Sphere, P. (2018) Negotiation [Online]. Available at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1FeM6kp9Q80 [accessed 5 May 2018]

Stagg, A. (2018) Negotiation Skills Top 10 Tips [Online]. Available at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oy0MD2nsZVs [accessed 5 May 2018]

 Ury W., & Fisher R. (2012) Getting to YES: Negotiating an agreement without giving in. Penguin Random House Australia

Walker D.H.T., & Lloyd-Walker B.M. (2015) Theory and Practice Collaborative Project Procurement Arrangements.  PMI Published Research.