I'm the Vice President of the Program Planning and Controls consulting practice in a Denver professional services firm, focused on aerospace and defense. I venture into the commercial side as well. I've been on the business management side of projects managing software, hardware, and services since graduate school in the late 70's.
I started in the software business writing signal processing in FORTRAN and Focal (PDP-15) as a physics graduate student. Like many physics grads, programming became my profession. Also like many programmers, the business and management side had more appeal than slinging code.
Truth is, it was difficult for me to keep up with the technology beyond ADA and Pascal and be involved in the "running" of a project. This was before the profession of project management as well established. The people who wanted to run projects just did it.
In the end I never liked the vagueness of C/C++, so managing became the default path.
I've been in and out of consulting, experiencing both sides of the buyer/seller equation.
My core competencies include IT Strategy, Program Management, and Mission Critical Systems architecture, Systems Engineering (this is a profession in the aerospace domain). With a core physical sciences background I'm biased away from the softer side of most things, enjoying instead numbers, facts, and "actionable outcomes" rather than the theory of how things work.
With an MBA in Systems Management and Finance, numbers are the basis of many of my engagements. Project performance is of special interest these days, since my assignments include the "program architecture" of large "systems of system" project ranging from several 100 Million to billions of tax payer dollars. These projects are unique for many, but they are quite normal in the aerospace business.
Many of my recent experiences are translatable to smaller and more agile projects. Especially when the question of value, strategy, and measurement comes in. Most of the agile initiative I’ve been on get asked the question – when am I going to recognize that we’re done?