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Recently we have been working with four of our valued clients focused on re-imagining Testing Services for the New Zealand corporate marketplace. The initial phases of this work concentrated on where each of these clients are on their testing journey. With the relevent gains they are trying to realise and the pains they are trying to avert. 
This week we completed a joint “co-creation” workshop from which we are now developing the next version of our Testing Services Value Proposition. 

Value Proposition

Using Design Thinking principles in conjunction with the Value Proposition Design method we have taken a customer-centric approach to re-designing our testing services. Where you might have thought surely testing can’t be re-imagined, you may be surprised how a joint forum such as this surfaces unseen, and therefore unmet needs, as well as features that don’t hit the mark or features that are not required. 

Client driven services
A further question might be, why would clients give up their time to help us design our services? Also why would they share their needs, pains and gains with other organisations? The answer is simple. If you can design what is offered in the marketplace, you are more likely to find what you are looking for. You also find that you have the time to stop and think about your role, what testing means to your organisation and where it should be heading. Sharing that with others you get immediate takeaways and, an added bonus, establishing deeper connections within NZ Inc.
So, what did we discover? Do customers just want their testing done cheaper? In fact, no, although cost is always a consideration, it is not the focus – value, relationships, trust and quality outcomes rank much higher. As you would expect a testing services offer needs to offer testing services, with quality outcomes, using best practices and the best people. But it was the unseen and unexpected that will make the difference in our new proposition and we’ll reveal that at a later date.
Mark Norwood

On Monday evening, I attended an ITP presentation given by Colin Ellis. The presentation was entitled “The Project Rots from the Head” and provided his perspective on project failures and how to prevent them. 
Colin’s key proposition was that project failure is a direct result of leadership failures. Either by the Project Sponsor, the Project Manager or them collectively. This arises due to them not being effective in their respective roles.
The role of the Project Manager was to:
  • Build the Team; 
  • Build the Plan; and 
  • Deliver the Project 
Colin stressed the importance of doing these items in this order – building the capability, defining the approach and doing the work to realise the outcome.


Personal Reflection on Projects

In reflecting on this proposition and assessing them against the projects I’m currently involved with – both client-facing, internal to LPS and those outside of work. They ring true for us achieving our goals. 
For me these are:
  • LPS – the current client needs – building the capability to deliver; 
  • outside of work – my leadership of a School Board and mentoring a Principal with the SpringBoard Trust; or 
  • personal – getting rid of a few kilos as we head towards Spring/Summer (with the help of the “Biggest Loser” competition at SKYCITY) 
Each of these activities has the need to manage challenges across my work with others, to proactively collaborate and in being true to myself.

LPS Context

It is these softer skills that are a common challenge for us all – in building and contributing to effective team cultures, positively delivering for our client organisations and maintaining a commitment to our values.
As we look at the growth LPS is seeing across our clients and our market, it is important that we continue to focus on the right people doing the right things to get the right results. 
Next week we will celebrate an important milestone in LPS’ history. There are now 200 people in our collective team. I look forward to celebrating this with you and continuing our plan towards our next milestone. In conclusion we will contunue to enable quality project outcomes for our clients.
Kevin Maloney