Project Manager, Trainer/Instructor, Organizational Developer Ian is a seasoned project manager and an award-winning training expert, process champion and organizational reformer. He has many years of experience developing and delivering productivity enhancement programs to major corporations, both on permanent staff and as an independent provider. An outstanding and highly compelling instructor, he has successfully applied or improved project management process to IT application development,maintenance and support in a variety of multi-regional environments. Ian's assignments have taken him to India, Japan, Hong Kong and London,as well as to many U.S. locations. This exposure to different cultures has given him a rare global perspective. His past clients also include the Federal Reserve Bank, Central Intelligence Agency, Union Carbide, Boeing Aircraft Corp. and MCI.
August 2010 - present Benson Associates Consultant, Instructor, Company President After the Lehman/Barclays integration, Ian returned to Benson Associates and a wider audience for his popular Project Management and Problem Solving training and the consulting, coaching and facilitation for which he is known. His major clients are in banking, finance and Pharma.
November 2008 - July 2010 Barclays Capital VP, Finance IT Following the Lehman bankruptcy, Ian was selected to run the Project Management office for the Finance IT group as it worked through the process of integrating the financial systems of Lehman and Barclays. This function required a balance to be found between the need for clear, precise project reporting and the daily struggle to execute, all in the context of a depleted workforce and a looming integration deadline. It worked well.
As the integration work neared completion, Ian began delivering Project Management workshops again and became a fixture on the training calendar.
April 2005 - November 2008 Lehman Brothers VP, IT Professional Development Ian began teaching project management at Lehman with the stated objective of making the organization smarter. In the field of project management, one way to make an organization smarter is to improve the generation, recording and sharing of information about the projects it undertakes. Ian did this by providing project managers in his workshops with the Kepner Tregoe-based thinking skills necessary to deliver projects in a fast moving IT environment, while keeping a strict hold on risks and expectations. This was embraced not only by the project managers and their managers, but also by the central and local Project Management Offices, all of whom quickly saw the benefits of a consistent, simple, fact-based methodology.
Ian was not only able to respond to demand for his work in Lehman offices in New York, Denver and Chicago, but also in Mumbai, Tokyo and London. As this approach to Project Management gained ground in the organization, Ian became very busy as a coach and mentor to IT developers, analysts and project managers at all levels.
When it became clear that the demand for standup instruction could not always be met, either because of the travel involved, or because would-be students could not afford the necessary absence from office, Ian redesigned and segmented the Project Management workshop for remote delivery in a blend of e-learning, video and Webex presentation.
Following his success with KT's Project Management, Ian introduced KT's Problem Solving and Decision Making (PSDM) to the organization.
PSDM achieved results early. Ian dramatically improved the firm's process for infrastructure crisis management by teaching Problem Analysis (PA) to the Technology Operations Command Centers in New York and London. The incorporation of PA into the crisis calls allowed call managers to involve the right people, report progress and isolate the problem faster and more reliably.
During 2008, in his capacity as training relationship manager with some regions and IT business units, Ian began to shift the focus of the training group from a primarily instructional to a primarily consulting role. This enabled him and his colleagues to coach the most experienced and highly technical project managers and teams in real time, on their own projects.
August 2001 - April 2005 Benson Associates Consultant, Instructor, Company President Presented courses on the evolution of technology, computer fundamentals and Systems Analysis at Briarcliffe College, Bethpage, NY.
Delivered workshops on Project Management and Problem Solving/Decision Making under contract to Kepner Tregoe and became one of very few outside instructors to present public KT courses and to train KT's own instructors. Ian was crucial in securing the sale of KT Project Management training to Lehman Brothers, who eventually hired Ian as a permanent employee.
January 1994 -August 2001 Chemical/Chase/JPMorganVP, Performance Management Problem-Solving Process Manager Ian was able to achieve dramatic and widespread improvements in problem-solving efficiency and decision-making quality by rolling out and coaching the Kepner Tregoe Rational Thinking Process throughout Chase Retail Banking Systems and Operations division. In the process, he trained over 700 managers and staff, personally presenting over 40 workshops, while managing the Bank's relationship with the vendor. Project Officer In his role as Project Officer, Ian implemented a system of accountability for system development time and cost, which resulted in significant improvement to the department's management of project expenses. He played a large part in the early design, prototyping and installation of a Project Workbench-based reporting system throughout Chase Retail Banking Systems, presenting over 50 workshops to technicians and managers in its use.
Training Facility Founder In response to high demand for easily available training, Ian launched RBS University, an on-site education facility dedicated to the technology training requirements of Chase Retail Banking Systems. IT Startup Manager Ian established a new IT department for an Investment Services company that found itself in a business-threatening IT situation. He developed and trained the senior user staff in the running of an IT group. Finally, he managed outsourcing of the back-office operations and handed off the stabilized operation to a new manager.
December 1990 - January 1994
Ian managed and facilitated a senior-level task force, composed of 16 managers from throughout the organization, to plan the company's new Product Support Organization in Tampa, Fl. The project comprised design of technical, human, organizational and financial systems, together with a five-year migration plan. He designed, built and installed an enterprise-wide project measurement and reporting system. It was necessary to replicate the functionality of all the existing in-house project tracking methods, which he eventually rationalized with unified measurement and projection standards. He then transferred the entire capability to a multi-platform client/server architecture.
As a by-product of the project measurement system, Ian defined and introduced organization-wide standards for project development methodology.
Ian and his team performed the feasibility study and produced the initial resourcing plan for migration from mainframe-based legacy systems to client/server architecture. July 1978 - December 1990 Benson Associates Consultant, Instructor, Company President Benson Associates presented public and in-house courses, seminars and tutorials in a variety of subjects including: Project Management, Systems Analysis, Structured Design, Jackson Methodology, Introduction to Information Technology, Problem Solving & Decision Making and Interpersonal Skills. Our clients are to be found in Banking, Insurance, Commerce, Industry, Government, Medicine and Academia.
BA also performed feasibility, requirements and methods analyses for clients including: Manufacturers Hanover Trust, American Express Corporate Card, Cantor Fitzgerald, Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine, Magna Software Corporation, General Foods, Northwest Industries and Union Carbide.
Benson's most ambitious consulting project was to organize, assemble and manage a highly skilled, multi-discipline team to perform a $1.5 million strategic business systems analysis for MCI. The team collected requirements data from nine separate business areas into a single business model. They then built a network capacity model and a PC-based prototyping environment to generate a working specification for the system, which was later successfully implemented.
Professional Affiliations Certified Kepner-Tregoe Project Management workshop leader
Certified Kepner-Tregoe Problem Solving/Decision Making workshop leader
Approved Kepner-Tregoe Instructor Trainer
Certified Jackson System Design Methodology instructor Adjunct Professor, Briarcliffe College Member of the British Computer Society Education University College School, London, England