Stanford Advanced Project Management

Since 1999, the Stanford Advanced Project Management program has been a high-quality leadership and management professional education program for project managers around the world. The program blended academic theory with proven project management techniques from leading companies to provide crucial insights and practical tools for managing projects, portfolios and complex systems.

The program was created by Stanford Professor Raymond Levitt and was extended as a partnership of the Stanford Center for Professional Development and IPS Learning. Across the 15 years the program was delivered, more than 8,000 professionals from across the world completed the program.

Participants in the program were primarily project managers who manage all sizes of projects and initiatives, with a minimum of a bachelor’s degree and three to five years of experience managing projects.

The core courses of the program focused on project management. Participants could customize their learning experience by focusing their electives in execution, strategy, leadership, innovation or decision-making. Courses were taught by Stanford faculty and leading industry experts and were delivered online, at work and at Stanford.

Upon successfully completing three required courses and three elective courses, a participant received the credential of Stanford Certified Project Manager (SCPM). 

As of April 25, 2017, the Stanford Advanced Project Management program ended.

If you participated in the program and would like to access your records of completion, please log into your mystanfordconnection account.

Click for more information about the courses that were included in the program:

 

XAPM110 - Converting Strategy into Action

Delivery: Online, At Work, On-Campus

Available: 1999- 2017

Overview

This introductory course provides the conceptual framework for all of the other courses in the program, introducing proven approaches and emerging concepts for aligning an organization's project and program initiatives with its strategic objectives. Students will learn why traditional "project management as usual" practices don't work in today's complex, fast-paced business environments, and then acquire a comprehensive organizational mastery model that does. Students will emerge with a firm grasp of what it takes for an organization to be focused and successful with projects and programs that consistently execute business strategies.

Instructors

Stephen Barley, Charles M. Pigott Prof., Engineering, Stanford University
Gideon Kunda, Professor, Tel Aviv University
Raymond Levitt, Professor, Stanford University
Mark Morgan, Instructor, IPS Learning
John Warren, Vice President of Strategic Solutions, IPSolutions
Tim Wasserman, Vice President of Curriculum Mgt. and Product Dvlp, IPSolutions

Topics Include

  • Align project initiatives with strategic objectives
  • Select, prioritize, and manage a portfolio of projects in a product development or other fast-paced business environment
  • Complete projects faster, with more efficient resource deployment
  • Use new tools to support planning and execution, thereby shrinking time to market
  • Address "crisis mentality" and use time more effectively
  • Champion advanced project management with both co-located and virtual teams
  • Close the gap between knowing and doing
  • Customize a best-practices based organizational mastery model for direct application in your organization
  • Build a stronger project-based matrix organization that is capable of consistently high performance

XAPM111 - Leadership for Strategic Execution

Delivery: Online, At Work, On-Campus

Available: 2004 - 2017

Overview

This course addresses the key leadership challenges facing those with responsibility for executing their company's strategies through organizational change and portfolio, program, and project implementation. The course focuses on those skills and competencies that leaders require for guiding their organizations, in addition to offering innovative tools for engaging others in meaningful collaboration.

Instructors

John Boose, Professional Associate, IPS Learning
Michael Dearing
Jeff Pfeffer, Professor, Stanford Graduate School of Business
Hayagreeva Rao, Professor of Organizational Behavior, Stanford Graduate School of Business
Robert Sutton, Professor of Management Science and Engineering, Stanford University

Topics Include

  • Leading decision-making and communications in strategic execution planning
  • Ensuring strategic alignment and organizational "fit"
  • Assessing and planning for organizational execution risks
  • Building collaborative partnerships through sponsorship and alliances
  • Planning and leading changes induced by new strategies and portfolios

XAPM221 - Executing Complex Programs

Delivery: Online, At Work, On-Campus

Available: 2010-2017

Overview

The successful execution of complex programs in today's dynamic environment challenges managers and leaders in many ways. Without the required repertoire of advanced skills, those responsible for designing and delivering program results may face insurmountable risks.

In this course, experts in the field of program execution will explore the critical success factors.

Instructors

Raymond Levitt
Behnam Tabrizi
John Warren

Topics Include

  • Gaining required and on-going support from senior management and key stakeholders
  • Cross-functional and cross-organizational team management
  • Understanding and managing program interfaces and interdependencies in complex systems
  • Predictive versus empirical strategies for managing complex projects with rapidly changing scopes

XAPM001 - Project Management Mastery

Delivery: Online, On-Campus

Available: 2001 -2015

Overview

Project Management Mastery is designed to teach practical project management skills—the skills needed in today's dynamic environment to successfully define, plan and manage projects. This 20-hour course takes you through a step-by-step process for planning and managing projects of any size.

Concepts and examples presented are reinforced through demonstrations and structured exercises. Participants apply the process to real-life company projects or to a case study. By the end of the course, each participant will have acquired hands-on experience in applying the new concepts and techniques to produce a quality project plan.

Instructor

Raymond Levitt

Topics Include

  • Review and validate project objectives
  • Establish a multi-functional project team
  • Define the framework by which team members will work together
  • Develop the work breakdown structure (WBS) and assign ownership to each task
  • Produce a schedule that can be managed by critical path and float
  • Refine estimates and finalize resource requirements
  • Develop risk management plans
  • Track, assess and communicate project status
  • Manage issues, changes and additional risks
  • Conduct close-out reviews and communicate key learnings

XAPM003 - PMP Examination Preparation

Delivery: Online

Available: 2009 - 2011

Overview

This four-day PMP® Exam Prep Boot Camp, delivered by IPS Learning and administered by the Stanford Center for Professional Development, is tailored for those who seek to prepare for the PMP® exam. The PMP® Exam Prep Boot Camp will focus on the five PMBOK® Guide process groups, the nine knowledge areas, as well as critical topics of professional responsibility. Those who attend will obtain all the PM education hours needed to apply for the exam. Students in this course will practice for the test by answering simulated exam sample questions in our simulated exam, and grow in confidence through our interactive exercises and case study discussions.

Delivery by IPS senior instructors with real-world expertise, makes this course a rich learning experience.

This 35 hour course fulfilled the entire Project Management Education required to take the exam.

XAPM112 - Mastering the Project Portfolio

Delivery: Online, At Work, On-Campus

Available: 1999 - 2017

Overview

In this core course you will learn an industry-proven approach to the high-challenge yet high-stakes, high-payoff undertaking of ensuring that the organization is investing in the right projects, giving those projects the right resources, and getting them completed at the right time. The course offers a complete, best-practices-based methodology for project selection, prioritization, and oversight-plus mentoring in how to resolve real-world implementation concerns.

Instructors

William Dieterich
Warren Hausman, Professor of Management Science and Engineering
Mike Hetrick, Professional Associate, IPSolutions
Raymond Levitt, Professor, Stanford University
Sam Savage, Consulting Professor, Management Science and Engineering

Topics Include

  • Establish effective governance over a project portfolio or multiple project portfolios
  • Evaluate the inherent value—and risk—of projects in the portfolio
  • Align projects with strategic objectives
  • Make trade-offs between several desirable opportunities when faced with insufficient resources to accomplish them all
  • Customize, implement, and institutionalize a portfolio management process that will work for your organization
  • Apply good sense in managing the day-to-day details of the portfolio
  • Reduce the negative impact of organizational politics
  • Integrate the portfolio management process with other business processes
  • Promote organization-wide consistency with regard to portfolio management objectives, processes, roles, and responsibilities
  • Effectively work with clients or customers to help them organize their project portfolios
  • Evaluate existing projects against new projects while managing a dynamic pipeline in which projects are constantly added, closed out, and rescoped
  • Effectively estimate resource capacity against resource demand
  • Better understand project interdependence
  • Effectively handle the requests of project and functional managers for more time, money, and resources

 

XAPM113 - Mastering the Integrated Program

Delivery: Online, At Work

Available: 2001 - 2015

Overview

By definition, programs are interconnected. The challenge is how to best design and manage these interconnections. Learn leading practices for managing and leading the program to successful completion through the effective use of: case development; output/outcome planning; resource planning and management; agreement &  change management; dealing with power & politics; generating accountability; and maintaining critical communication.
 
Topics Include

  •  Identify and plan for issues that interfere with successful program execution
  •  Manage the critical agreement structure with diverse program stakeholders
  • Contend for constrained organizational resources in complex global environments
  • Systematically plan and execute critical program processes to understand, align, translate, and deliver expected outcomes for customers, sponsors, partners and staff
  • Establish an adaptive program subculture emphasizing accountability while valuing the diverse representation on the team

XAPM210 - Designing the Organization for Execution

Delivery: Online, On-Campus

Available: 1999 - 2015

Overview

Ability to execute strategy is widely acknowledged to be the ultimate differentiator-and ultimate challenge-in today's business environment. This course will enable you to be an effective contributor in shaping an organization that is equal to the undertaking. You will be prepared to create the structure, culture, processes, and tools that align your organization's implementation capability with its strategy-even when that strategy must continually change in response to market demands.

Instructors

Jay Galbraith
Hau Lee
Ray Levitt
William Malek
 
Topics Include

  • Design an organization capable of aligning its project and program activities with its business strategy, in real-time
  • Successfully resolve the range of "people issues" that can impede responsiveness and flexibility
  • Develop the capability to respond quickly, fully, and seamlessly to global customers' expectations
  • Expand your organization's capability to execute by building high-functioning alliances with the right vendors
  • Identify and create the optimal matrix organization for your organization
  • Come to grips with the cultural issues that stand in your organization's way
  • Increase your effectiveness as a change agent within the implementation environment

XAPM211 - The Strategic PMO: Projects to Enterprise

Delivery: Online, At Work

Available: 2008 - 2016

Overview

Learn a wide range of proven techniques and emerging concepts for creating strategic project management offices (SPMO) that enable effective implementation of organizational strategy through engagements, portfolios, programs, and projects. As part of the Stanford Advanced Project Management curriculum, this course combines the latest research from Stanford University with the world of practical strategy execution. Using innovative decision matrices, you will explore how to best adopt Strategic PMOs by design, not default. You will also focus on key factors for success, staffing, Strategic PMO activities, and the organizational infrastructure for the Strategic PMO. Special modules will analyze the importance of power and politics in creating and managing Strategic PMOs and the role of Strategic PMOs in supporting organizational change.

Instructors

Suzanne Harrison, CEO, Gathering2.0
Raymond Levitt Professor, Stanford University
Michael Pierantozzi, Co-Founder and COO, Gathering2.0
John Warren, Vice President of Strategic Solutions, IPSolutions

Topics Include

  • Explain why a Strategic PMO may be needed for complex programs and projects
  • Define Strategic PMO and the activities it delivers that cannot be accomplished as well elsewhere in the organization, particularly as an agent of change
  • Determine the best Strategic PMO design and how to best implement it, given your desired
  • Assess the political environment, identify forces that support (or thwart) effective Strategic PMO operation, navigating them successfully
  • Provide, as needed, a consistent Strategic PMO framework across the enterprise
  • Determine how to leverage your Strategic PMO practice for greater impact on the organization and its strategy
  • Address real-world challenges in running a Strategic PMO and apply practices learned during a reality dive simulation

XAPM212 - Financial Mastery for Projects

Delivery: Online, At Work

Availability: 2003 - 2016

Overview

Achieve a deeper understanding of corporate finance and investment analysis as practiced by today's portfolio, program, and project managers. In this course, designed specifically for non-financial managers, you'll learn how a project's performance affects revenue recognition, profitability, and cash flow for the organization as a whole. You'll be prepared to communicate more confidently about the economic value of projects throughout their lifecycle.

Instructors

Raymond Levitt, Professor, Stanford University
James Patell
Henry Riggs, Thomas W. and Joan B. Ford Prof., Engineering, Eme
John Warren, Vice President of Strategic Solutions, IPSolutions

Topics Include

  • Glean critical information from the key financial statements-and the important disclosures in their footnotes
  • Assess business performance using key metrics and financial ratios
  • Compare the implications of various types of project financing
  • Conduct a financial analysis of a project proposal using investment analysis techniques
  • Generate and analyze various project scenarios to increase the chances of a project's financial success
  • Be alert to the potential for financial statement fraud, other types of fraud, and grounds for commercial litigation
  • Manage and communicate so as to demonstrate a project's contribution to your organization's overall financial performance

XAPM213 - Leveraging the Customer Relationship

Delivery: Online, At Work

Availability: 2001 - 2015

Overview

Improving customer satisfaction while maintaining organizational priorities, values, and goals is a balancing act all organizations must master. This course teaches how participants can be most effective at weighing competing objectives, facilitating decision making, ensuring customer satisfaction without compromising goals, and following through on opportunities for business development.

Previously known as Build Winning Stakeholder Commitments.

Topics Include

  • Build customer satisfaction and loyalty without compromising the organization's profitability
  • Understand customers with different communication styles
  • Value Profit Chain principles
  • Learn and apply the 1-to-1 Diagnosis model
  • Develop strategies for communicating more effectively regardless of gender, culture, or generational differences
  • Understand business cultures and how it affects communication style
  • Maintain and build relationships while negotiating

XAPM214 - Managing Without Authority

Delivery: Online, At Work, On-Campus

Availability: 2001 - 2017

Overview

Learn how to maintain positive relationships yet get things done in a project-based matrix environment in which you lack direct authority. This course demonstrates effective techniques and provides plenty of practice in using them. You'll acquire knowledge and skills you can leverage to negotiate priorities, get people to work together productively, manage highly charged situations, resolve performance problems, and keep projects on track despite the challenges that inevitably arise.

Instructors

Stephen Barley
John Boose

Topics Include

  • Influence decisions others make that are critical to your success and your project's or program's success
  • Hold people accountable through means other than hierarchical authority
  • Communicate performance problems in a fact-based, non-punishing manner that encourages mutual problem solving
  • Appropriately diagnose the root causes of performance problems in order to plan immediate and effective corrective action
  • Gain commitments from project team members who are not direct reports, so as to meet expectations and fulfill agreements
  • Deal with strong emotions that can arise among customers, partners, employees, and managers
  • Reduce the conflict inherent in a project-based matrix environment
  • Promote higher productivity, efficiency, and performance

XAPM215 - Project Risk Management

Delivery: Online, At Work   

Available: 2004 - 2016   

Overview

Project Risk Management begins with an exercise that explores the challenges of planning for and managing project risk in today's complex, ever-changing business environment. It continues with the four critical building blocks for understanding and managing uncertainty probability distributions. Simple examples are presented in the context of Project Management.

The risk of organizational failure in projects can now be predicted and mitigated using ideas and tools developed at Stanford over the past 16 years. We introduce the "Virtual Design Team" approach to modeling the information processing requirements of a fast-track project and assessing the information processing capacity of your project organization, so you can proactively anticipate these organizational risks and intervene to mitigate them.

We continue by introducing a process for assessing and planning for risk. You'll examine a process that allows you to identify risk management considerations, assess the severity and consequences of a given risk and its overall threat to your project or program, and explore options and trade-offs for managing the risk.

We also examine several case studies where missed opportunities to plan and/or effectively manage risk led to monumental consequences, and conclude with a discussion on whether your management system enables the organization to do the right things to facilitate the successful achievement of its business objectives.

Instructors

William Malek
Scott Sagan
Sam Savage
Russ Zinser
 

XAPM216 - Leading Effective Teams

Delivery: Online, At Work, On-Campus

Availability: 2004 - 2017

Overview

The expanding global marketplace has placed a new premium on a leader's ability to manage geographically distributed teams. The solution lies more in understanding the internal and external dynamics than using the newest software tools that keep us connected. This course provides new insights and skills that will enable you to coordinate, communicate and collaborate more effectively with team members, regardless of location.

Previously known as Strategies for Contemporary Team Leadership.

Instructors

Diane Bailey Associate Professor at the School of Information, University of Texas at Austin
Stephen Barley Charles M. Pigott Prof., Engineering, Stanford University
John Boose Professional Associate, IPS Learning
Pamela Hinds Professor, Stanford University

Topics Include

  • Manage conflict more effectively and turn it into a source for innovation
  • Alter the way you design, develop and measure teams to leverage leading edge strategies and techniques
  • Identify cultural and language issues that can impact team problem solving
  • Overcome difficulties presented by distance and the limitations of communication technologies
  • Develop a team culture that encourages innovation in project teams
  • Manage the contributions of temporary team members
  • Maximize the use of communication technologies

XAPM218 - Managing Global Initiatives

Delivery: Online, On-Campus           

Available: 2006 - 2015      

Overview

This course provides interdisciplinary education in an intensive 2 1/2 day format, specifically designed for industry professionals. It is the only course of its kind, offering a combination of project management, social science, and business theory, and crystallizing "cutting-edge research" from Stanford's very own Collaboratory for Research on Global Projects.

To prepare industry professionals to anticipate and navigate the challenges that arise in planning, staffing, and structuring a complex, capital-intensive project in a foreign market context.

Instructors

Ray Levitt
Hazel Markus
Ryan Orr
Richard Scott

XAPM220 - Leading Change from the Middle

Delivery: Online, At Work, On-Campus

Availability: 2008 - 2017

Overview

Initiating and executing critical programs and projects often requires a successful change effort. Change can affect organizational structure, reporting relationships, and the manner in which work gets done; previously determined goals and metrics may no longer apply. Change may even threaten an organization's culture.

Perspectives on change differ based on the degree to which individuals accept the irrational and complex nature of change. Assumptions about the content, context, and process of change vary greatly from company to company, and from individual to individual. These assumptions deliberately or tacitly affect decision-making. As a result, managers and leaders who are expected to initiate, lead, and execute these programs and projects may feel ill-prepared or disempowered.

Instructors

Curtis Cook
Behnam Tabrizi
Tim Wasserman

Topics Include

  • Define different types of change, and diagnose the root causes driving the need for the change
  • Analyze the psychology of change and diagnose why change efforts fail
  • Apply a 90-day planning process for gaining the assurance and acceptance needed to successfully plan and implement change in support of your strategic program and project initiatives
  • Address common challenges by applying tools and techniques to a variety of real-life, global case studies

XAPM222 - Building Winning Stakeholder Commitments

Delivery: On-Campus                          

Available: 2011          

Overview

This course develops skill in managing stakeholder relationships, whether internal or external. You will acquire proven communication and negotiation techniques for handling the challenging dynamics of stakeholder interaction. You'll learn how you can be most effective at diagnosing stakeholder problems, selling ideas internally, managing stakeholders' changing needs and wants, facilitating decision making, ensuring stakeholder satisfaction, and following through on opportunities for business development.

Instructors

Tom Kosnik

Topics Include

  • Increase stakeholder satisfaction without compromising your organization's values and goals
  • Balance competing objectives
  • Employ optimal communication techniques when interacting with key project stakeholders
  • Facilitate decision making
  • Conduct principled negotiations that bring project goals and financial requirements into alignment
  • Take gender and cultural differences into consideration when interacting with stakeholders
  • Recognize and capitalize on opportunities for business development inside and outside the stakeholder's organization

XAPM223 - Bridging Discipline and Agility

Delivery: On-Campus

Available: 2013 - 2016

Overview

Today's dynamic business environment has broad implications for how programs and projects are planned and implemented, as well as for the individuals who are chartered to lead these efforts. Organizations need leaders who are adaptive in their approaches to project execution. This course will expose participants to new ways of thinking about how projects should best be executed. It will enable them to help their organizations and teams operate with rigor to meet regulations or safety concerns, while offering increased levels of agility, creativity, and innovation. Examples and case studies will be presented from a wide range of organizations, industries and functions, including: large multi-nationals to post start-up organizations; development to delivery to operations functions; and co-located to globally dispersed teams.

 Previously known as Adaptive Execution of Strategy.

Topics Include

  • Compare and contrast traditional vs. more decentralized approaches to planning, executing and controlling project-based work.
  • Learn and apply a wide array of tools and techniques for project planning, execution and control, derived from traditional "waterfall", agile, and lean methodologies.
  • Use a "Contingent Project Execution Framework" to identify the variables that drive decisions about the most effective project delivery approach for each of the different programs and projects in your organization.
  • Identify appropriate leadership practices for managing diverse, distributed teams in "ambidextrous" project-based organizations.

XAPM230 - Project Innovation Through Design Thinking

Delivery: Online, On-Campus

Availabilty: 2010 - 2017

Overview

This course explores how project managers can use design thinking to foster innovation in their project teams. Participants will be introduced to design thinking through experiential learning, lectures, and class discussion. 

Learn how to use design thinking as a process to better understand problems, generate ideas, and evaluate creative solutions. At the end of the course, participants should be aware of different approaches and be better prepared to lead and facilitate innovation in their project teams.

Previously known as Innovating Global Products and Services.

Instructors

Banny Banerjee, Professor of Practice, Stanford University
Michael Barry
Pamela Hinds, Professor, Stanford University
Julie Stanford

Topics Include

  • Design Thinking
  • Understanding user needs
  • Ideation
  • Perspectives on culture
  • Challenges in cross-cultural design
  • Cross-cultural design strategies
  • Mind mapping
  • Reframing problem
  • Storytelling and Narratives
  • Identifying imperatives and the opportunity spaces for your projects

XAPMC113 - Program Management- Interfaces and White Spaces

Delivery: On-Campus                          

Available: 2008        

Overview

Stanford Advanced Project Management (SAPM) defines a program—large or small, global or local—as a set of interdependent projects which must each be successfully completed to get the program work accomplished. In such an undertaking, it's all too easy for things to slip through the cracks. The course Program Management—Interfaces and White Spaces addresses the three main challenges in successfully managing a program's inherent ambiguities.

Instructors

Stephen Barley
Martin Fischer
Mark Morgan
John Warren

XAPMC211 - Effective Project Management Office

Delivery: Online, On-Campus                                      

Available: 2000 - 2008        

Overview

Based on extensive research and practical experience gained in working with some of the largest, most complex project organizations in the world, this course provides a practical framework for defining, creating, implementing, and managing an appropriate, effective project support function. You'll learn how to recognize what is working and what more can be done to assure that your organization's project management office (PMO) creates value, not overhead.

Topics Include

  • Evaluate the different configurations for a PMO and its potential functions within your organization
  • Determine whether your organization would benefit most from having a formal PMO as a functional entity or simply a virtual community of practice that supports and enables project work
  • Create the proper balance between supporting project work and "policing" project work, including guidance and metrics for measuring success and continuous improvement
  • Leverage the project support skills in your organization to assure organizational support instead of project-by-project coordination
  • Define roles and responsibilities of the PMO members and project management personnel
  • Position the PMO to enable project communication and integrate key processes among all levels of the organization
  • Enable the PMO to improve project performance across the board and retain critical project-based intellectual capital

XAPMC219 - Organizational Mastery Workshop

Delivery: Online, On-Campus                                      

Available: 1999 -2007       

Overview

Building a world-class project management organization is a project of the highest order. This unique workshop experience will enable your organization to approach it as such—with a well-defined plan, specific deliverables, clear roles and responsibilities, adequate budget, and carefully crafted schedule. Working from a complete assessment of the organization's present status, and guided by a proven methodology, participants produce a complete "project plan" for attaining organizational mastery of project management. Whatever your organization's current level of project management "maturity," this highly focused workshop will thoroughly prepare your participants to take it to higher levels.