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Service Issue 79

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Service magazine addresses key issues related to government leadership and service delivery in South Africa.


S business MEGATRENDS FOR CHANGEMAKERS Progress depends on changemakers — people who see opportunity and solutions during crisis. Project professionals, of course, are born changemakers. OOrganisations have long turned to project managers and professionals with project skills to help them turn ideas into reality. What truly sets this community apart is their focus on implementation. This skill set will be more indispensable in the years ahead than ever before. The Project Management Institute (PMI) has released its Global Megatrends 2022 report, an analysis of the global forces significantly impacting society and the project management profession today. Global Megatrends 2022 helps project professionals understand the world’s rapid transformation and the global context in which they work so they can use projects to solve complex problems. “The world continues to see ongoing change and uncertainty, impacting our daily lives at home and work,” says Michael DePrisco, interim president, CEO and chief operating officer of PMI. “Our Global Megatrends report helps our community of project professionals understand the trend lines reshaping the future – from the climate crisis to the ripple effects of shifting demographics.” South African project professionals will be increasingly required to build consideration for these global events into their strategies and planned outcomes if they are to ensure that they remain relevant in an age that is changing at a pace that challenges society. Our project professionals must, therefore, be dedicated to not only developing strong technical skills, but also cultivating an understanding of the broader strategic environment impacting their projects. The report, which draws on trend data, primary and secondary research, and interviews with project managers in the field, elaborates on six critical demographic, economic and social trends. These are: DIGITAL DISRUPTION There is almost no field of endeavour that is free from the constant drive of technological change. Digital transformation was underway prior to the advent of the Covid-19 pandemic, with many organisations redefining their core business models to gain competitive advantage in an unceasingly changing marketplace of products and ideas. The pandemic greatly accelerated an expansion of digital technologies, especially tools to enable online collaboration and remote work. The trend toward remote work had been gaining speed, facilitated by digitisation and improved connectivity. But any hesitation about adopting a remote model were swept aside as the ability to work from home became necessary to carry on normal business. This shift looks likely to become entrenched in the foreseeable future. Companies also rushed to bring new digital offerings to market. According to McKinsey, the rate at which companies introduced products and services that are As globalisation recalibrates, there is hope that it may emerge kinder and gentler with a greater social consciousness at its core. 16 | Service magazine

usiness S digital in nature advanced by six years in North America, seven years in Europe, 10+ years in Asia-Pacific and seven years globally. CLIMATE CRISIS World leaders attending the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) proclaimed the need for urgent action. However, progress to address climate change has been elusive. Moving forward, sustainability practices will need to be built into every project and process if the world is to arrest the most damaging effects of global warming. The pandemic has raised awareness of the impact humans have on the environment and the effect environmental degradation has on human wellbeing and on the world economy. Most renewables are now cheaper than fossil fuels, thanks to investments made over the past decade. And projects have been initiated to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. One-fifth of the world’s largest companies have set netzero targets. Many more need to do the same and they’ll need to join forces with governments, academia and other organisations. Greater investment in sustainability projects is imperative, particularly in industries that produce the most emissions, such as energy production and transportation. Embedding sustainability practices into every function, process and decision across the value chain will require cross-enterprise collaboration. Project managers will need

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