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PPMP20009 Leading Lean Projects Assignment - Central Queensland University, Australia

Case study: SINTEF's lean implementation initiative.

You have been engaged as a consultant to assist the senior management team identify a project team that comprises a project manager and several key project team members who will spear head the implementation of lean principles in SINTEF.


Answer - Leading Lean Projects


Advancement of technology generally changes the mode of overall business operation effectively, and that mainly provides the organization higher competitive advantages in day to day business operations. The top management is using different innovative strategies to improve the overall organizational performance further to trigger the financial position as well as a brand image (Nahum & Carmeli, 2019). Majority of business organizations are using lean project management to generate more new ideas, deliver more value with minimum waste that leads to improving the overall working excellence of the organization (Qattawi & Chalil Madathil, 2019). Implementation wide ranges of upgrade software in the business organization also enhances the communication and reduces the overall labour cost so that the senior management of all the business organization is now focused on lean thinking to grow the business faster in the operating market.

This particular project generally signifies the management and leading the lean project of a functional organization named SINTEF Ltd. This organization involves in divers operation such as information technology, finance, engineering, sales marketing, procurement, human capital management and many mores (El Basha, 2018). The directors of this organization want to implement lean principals to improve the organizational business operations further. For that reason, this specific project mainly indicates the different leadership styles, the character of a valuable group member and the overall tools and techniques that are required to implement lean thinking effectively.

Q1. Compare and distinguish various leadership styles that could potentially be adopted by the selected project manager.

Compare and Distinguish Various Leadership Style

In present days, leadership is one of the essential parts of every business organisation to improve the working excellence as well as work performance of the employees that leads to fulfilling organisational objectives in an efficient manner (Parkhi, 2019). Leadership refers to the approach to provide the right direction, innovative thinking and motivate other team members for gaining long term success in the project works. According to the viewpoint of Salah & Rahim, (2019), there are different types of leadership such as Autocratic leadership style, Coaching leadership style, Democratic leadership style, strategic direction, transformational leadership, Charismatic leadership etc. At first, the organisation needs to recognise its current position by evaluating its strength, weakness and future threats and based on analysis, and the management needs to implement strategies to get long term output from the business.


The autocratic leadership generally signifies the one-dimensional direction that means the leader has the full power and makes the vital decision typically without any discussion with the other group members. Autocratic leaders generally communicate with the employees based on requirements and all the members are expected to follow the instruction immediately (Rawat et al., 2019). Apart from that, the democratic leaders are more participative and generally make critical strategic decisions to improve the overall team performance correctly. In this case, the leaders should be creative and knowledgeable because a democratic leader has the responsibility to manage the skilled and experienced staffs proficiently to trigger the overall working performance that leads to achieving the organisational goals rapidly (Nahum & Carmeli, 2019). In coaching leadership style, the leaders do not involve directly or indirectly with the other members. Coaching leaders generally provide training and skill development to enhance performance. At the same time, the coaching leaders also supervise the team and measure the performance of each and individual employees by using various key performance indicators.

On the other hand, the strategic leader refers to the influence team members to make the voluntary decision for the organization that generally helps management to generate more new ideas with a view to organizational development. A strategic leader has the potentiality to express the strategic vision to mitigate future risks, and it generally provides long term success to the business entities (Rawat et al., 2019). Transformational leadership is one of the vital leadership approaches that initiate change in the organization based on requirements. This type of leadership generally focused on long term goals of the organization. This leadership style is vital to make a proper corporate culture in the workplace that improves the overall working environment that leads to enhance the rate of employee retention (El Basha, 2018). The charismatic leaders generally attract the other team members by using their charisma. These leaders are self-motivated and confident about every action they implement to improve the business organization further. A Charismatic leader generally builds good relationships with each and individual team members and motivates them in their work. In the case of decision making, the charismatic leaders also involve the key team members to generate more new innovative ideas for sustainable development in the organization.

Q2. Select one (1) leadership style and explain in detail why you think it will be the best option given SINTEF's organisational structure and context.

Explanation of Preferred Leadership Style

According to the case study, it has been identified that for SINTEFF Ltd. Democratic leadership style is more suitable to manage lean projects efficiently. The Democratic leaders have the characteristics to maintain the efficient or experienced people to obtain the outcome from the project work. Leading the lean process is very difficult, and the leaders should have the technical as well as managerial experience in the project management field (Qattawi & Chalil Madathil, 2019). It will help the leaders to communicate with all the employees effectively to get more competitive advantages during project work. Various skilled labours, staffs are required to manage the day to day workforce correctly. The business organization needs to improve the overall organizational technology to trigger the rate of success (Salah & Rahim, 2019). One of the vital responsibilities of democratic leaders is to work as a bridge between the management and employees. Lean thinking is an essential transformative approach that focused on improving customer value through educating the monitoring and leadership activities (Bayhan, Demirkesen, & Jayamanne, 2019). The lean organizations encourage in continuous improvement process to make the organizational development sustainable. In order to get success, it is essential for leaders to motivate the employees in their work effectively to achieve common organizational goals. Implementation of lean principals generally helps management in ensuring quality products and services.


In SINTEFF Ltd, the management is focusing on extending some other business functions that are related to Information Technology. Implementation of lean principal is essential to increase working speed and eliminate waste for more organizational productivity (Parkhi, 2019). For that reason, a specific leadership is required to manage the overall technology and communication among the employees that lead to trigger the financial health as well as the business performance of the organization. The senior management of this company has decided to create a capable team in the organization named "THE A TEAM". This team will manage the overall project efficiently with the help of four to five members. The main objective of the business organization is to improve the organizational financial position and brand image (Bayhan, Demirkesen, & Jayamanne, 2019). A democratic leader has the responsibility to empower the group and trigger the overall decision-making process for continuous improvement in the business organization. A democratic leader will encourage all the employees for practical innovation and more creative solution to mitigate all the organizational issues proficiently. . For that reason the implementation of democratic leaders in this organization will improve the overall financial health of SINTEFF Ltd.

Q3. Determine characteristics that will be required to become a valuable team member of "THE A TEAM".

Determine the characteristics to become a Valuable Team Member of "THE A TEAM"

Employees are the main asset of an organisation, but the management chooses the potential employees or worker for special innovative projects and decision-making process to improve the organisational position by generating more creative ideas with a view to organisational change (Qattawi & Chalil Madathil, 2019). Planning is one of the vital parts of every project and involves the potential employee in project planning, also helps management to reduce the chances of imminent risk efficiently. Formation of the team is a complex task, and every team member should have the specific characteristic to perform their roles efficiently for the sake of sustainable organisational development (Kempa & Tutupary, 2019). A good team member is straightforward and takes the responsibilities in a pressurised situation to get reliable and validate the outcome from the project work. All the team members need to cooperate during the management of important projects and also needs to assist the team leader in a pressurised situation (Rawat et al., 2019). Without proper cooperation, it is not possible for a capable team to achieve success instantly. At the same time, adequate communication is essential in lean project management; for that reason all the members should have useful communication skill. An efficient team member generally takes appropriate credit for their work, but they never think to take the credit other's work.


On the other hand, to manage the lean project, correctly the organization needs to create a positive attitude in the workplace, and that is vital to encourage as well as trigger the performance of each and individual team member (Nahum & Carmeli, 2019). All the team members need to share the load correctly and requires to provide backup others to manage the pressurize situation effectively. In "THE A-TEAM" the management needs to select the efficient employees who can handle the pressurize works in a given deadline. Organizational decision making is one of the critical processes, and that helps management to fulfil organizational goals through effective services and products. It is also essential for the leader to communicate with all the team members and attach them psychologically with the company to get maximum output from business operations (Buzdar & Fatima, 2018). A perfect team member of THE A-TEAM needs to maintain confidentiality in works and should have an active personality in managing both internal and external stakeholders proficiently. A valuable member needs to follow the overall corporate governance as well as organizational policies to preserve the specific corporate culture, and that will help to improve the organizational brand image further shortly. The members of THE A-TEAM will consult with team leaders to make effective strategies decision to make the project sustainable.

Q4. Propose tools / techniques that could be implemented in various departments of SINTEF that will improve their efficiency. Provide specific examples on how the tools will be implemented.

Tools and Techniques to Facilitate Lean Business Operation

The top management needs to implement various technology and system to start lean thinking in the organization that will improve overall organizational performance as well as a brand image (Buzdar & Fatima, 2018). There are different tools, and models are used in the lean projects such as DMAIC framework, PMBOK, PRINCE2, Kaizen tools, 5S models, Just in Time (JIT), Poka-Yoke tools, Heijunka etc. generally vital to increase the overall working excellence of the staffs that leads to improving organizational productivity.


DMAIC Framework

Implementation of the DMAIC framework will provide these organisation with higher competitive advantages in the operating market. The leader of THE A-TEAM" needs to define the overall organisational objectives clearly to all the members (Ramlal, 2018). At the same time, it is also essential to measure the issues and analyse it to implement effective mitigation planning to improve or control the overall organisational position. The management needs to provide all the team members to get more output from the business.


Project Management Body of Knowledge is one of the essential guides for the majority of business organisation for managing the lean principal effectively (El Basha, 2018). The management generally follow this book to identify all the techniques or method such as Work Breakdown Structure, Critical path method etc. and the management team of SINTEFF Ltd. needs to follow all the guidelines of this book to improve the general management process such as project planning, efficient staffing, organising and executing the overall organisational operation. At the same time, the management needs to use this book to manage the financial forecasting and corporate budgeting process for sustainable business development.


"Project In controlled Environment" is one of the useful tools and the management of various business organizations generally use it to justify and defining the overall structure of a business entity for the control that leads to trigger the product based approach (Buzdar & Fatima, 2018). The SINTEFF Ltd. will use the seven steps of this model such as determination of project for active start-up, Initiate the project by evaluating all the risk related factors, direct the project efficiently and that will help leaders to complete the project successfully.

7-Kaizen Tools

This particular tool is essential to reduce the overall project management cost efficiently. The Team leader of SINTEFF Ltd. needs to implement these tools through the PDCA cycle that will trigger the continuous improvement (Ramlal, 2018). This program helps the team to improve the overall service quality further that also grab the attention of more customers. At the same time, it will help management to perform the root cause analysis for understanding the negative events correctly.

Leading Lean Projects Assignment.png

5S models

5S model is essential for all the business organization in maintaining its product and service quality to attract more customers that lead to an increase in organizational sales volume (Kempa & Tutupary, 2019). It generally signifies the five significant factors that can improve the overall performance of SINTEFF Ltd. According to these tools, this organization needs to avoid the waste of resources, and that will reduce the total operating cost of the organization. Implementation of these tools also helps management to keep the working environment clean, and that will provide all the members or employees psychological satisfaction that leads to an increase in the rate of employee retention.


Just in Time (JIT)

Just in Time is one of the vital lean manufacturing tools or management philosophy that mainly helps to focus on customer requirements (Ramlal, 2018). It generally improves the overall working excellence of the employees and reduces the total time waste so that "THE A-TEAM" can control the variability in their process and it will reduce the overall operational cost of SINTEFF Ltd. that leads to improving the overall financial health of this company.


It is one of the vital tools that signify the production defect of the organization that means it will help the technical operator to avoid the mistakes during business operations. It generally focuses on human errors so that operation leader can identify the defects quickly (Kempa & Tutupary, 2019). This specific tool will help this company to improve the product and service quality further to gain several loyal customers shortly. At the same time, the use of these tools will provide this company with higher competitive advantages in the IT industry.


It is also known as a lean programming tool, and the main objective of this tool is to improve the organizational service or production to fulfil the customer demand effectively (Nahum & Carmeli, 2019). For that reason, the "THE A-TEAM" should identify the requirements of customer based on market research and trying to produce the mix of products based on customer demand. It reduces the overall waste of resources and time that leads to managing the lean principal proficiently.

List of Assumptions

Use of various Lean tools is essential for "THE A-TEAM" to manage the overall project works effectively by reducing the chances of future threats. Selection of effective leader will motivate all the employees for their work (Lina & Ullah, 2019). In this regard, the leader will use important various performance indicators to measure the performance of each employee. The leader will consult with the manager for the training and skill development program based on the organizational requirement to grab the attention of more young talent. SINTEFF Ltd. will implement upgrade technology to support the overall lean thinking that leads to sustainable corporate development.


Based on the above study, it has been identified that leadership is vital for all the business organization in managing the lean principals successfully. Implementation of democratic leadership strategy will help this organization to improve the operation further, and use of lean thinking will reduce the number of waste resources that will improve the organizational financial position (Hansen, 2018). There are different tools described in this study, and the specification or characteristic of each tool are separate so that implementation of this technology in this organization will improve the overall working excellence of the organization (Nahum & Carmeli, 2019). At the same time, maintain an active working environment will grab the attention of more employees, so that the use of lean thinking is vital to improve employee retention rate. So that use of this technique will provide these organization higher competitive advantages during business operations.


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