PMI Leadership Institute Meeting Recap

PMI Chicagoland Chapter welcomes the world to the PMI Leadership Institute Meeting -  Oct. 25 to 28, 2017

A recap in words, links and pictures by Sue Hagen, VP Administration, PMINAC – This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Phil Beck, Bilal Abukhodair, Bakhtawar Pastakia and Sue Hagen were thrilled to represent PMINAC at the PMI LIM in Chicago, IL, October 25 to 28. Hosted by the PMI Chicagoland Chapter, this world-class event was held at McCormick Place – a massive complex connected to the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place and the Marriott Hotel.

The PMINAC team arrived in Chicago on Tuesday, and enjoyed a dinner of authentic Chicago deep dish pizza and chicken wings with PMI colleagues at Lou Malnati’s before getting ready for the PMI Region meetings on Wednesday afternoon.Bilal and Phil

We also had a little free time on Wednesday morning, and visited such iconic sites as the Art Institute of Chicago, the Cloud Gate ‘bean’ sculpture, and the famed waterfront district.

PMI LIM banner Oct 2017It was full steam ahead on Wednesday afternoon – the PMINAC team attended the PMI Region 1 meeting, hosted by our Region 1 Mentor John Naughton. (Fun Fact: Region 1 includes 16 chapters, from Alaska to Idaho and all points in between!).

We particularly enjoyed Shelley Pinder’s presentation on engaging chapter members through social media. Shelley’s presentation was high-energy and really interesting – we’ll be sure to check out the wealth of resources she uses, including Flipboard,!, social media editorial calendar templates, Buffer scheduling for LinkedIn, Sprout, GoAnimate, PowToons, Adobe Spark, Canva, Pocket Video, Social Zoom Factor, Marketing Profs, Social Media Examiner, Twitter analytics, Facebook analytics, LinkedIn company page analytics and much, much more!

Phil found time to connect with PMI’s President and CEO, Mark Langley (right), before the team headed over to a PMI Region 1 reception at Pizano’s (because you can never have too much pizza in Chicago!). The PMINAC team enjoyed networking with peers from across Region 1, comparing notes and preparing for the days ahead.

Mark and Phil Oct 2017


Thursday opened with welcoming remarks from PMI VP Global Membership and Chapters Michael DePrisco, followed by Board Chair 2017 Board of Directors Mark Dickson, and PMI President and CEO Mark Langley. The executive team provided an overview of PMI’s strategic transformation, and spoke about the importance of chapters continuing to deliver value to their members.

 Mark Oct 2017


More Fun Facts: 1,053 delegates attended this year’s PMI LIM, representing 239 chapters from 58 countries around the world. The diversity is amazing and exciting to see.

Even More Fun Facts: there are 492,164 members of PMI holding 856,128 active certifications, representing 306 chapters and potential chapters from 207 countries/territories around the world.

Bilal Mark Bakhtawar Oct 2017

After the PMI executive welcome, Dr. Derreck Kayongo took the stage to deliver his keynote speech, “Harnessing Your Power to Create Change”. He shared the story of how he and his parents fled political unrest in Uganda for a better life. As a self-made entrepreneur and inventor, Dr. Kayongo founded the Global Soap Project – an initiative to recycle hotel soap and distribute it through global health programs to people who lack access to it around the world. Those of us who travel will never look at hotel soap the same way again. What an electric and inspiring way to head into the rest of the LIM.

Dr Derreck Kayongo

#nextgenpm - there are too many concurrent educational sessions to summarize here, but we did want to highlight the focus on engaging the next generation of millennials and new professionals. This group was born between 1980 and 1995, is college or university educated, and entering their first or second job. They comprise 27% of the global population. The takeaway for all chapters is that we need to make room for the #nextgenpm, remove the barriers to PMI entry and make it easier to stay connected.

Over lunch, PMI celebrated the 2017 LIMC class graduates, along with chapter award winners. After the day’s sessions wrapped up, it was off to a lovely reception at the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place.

Friday came early, with a morning meditation session (Namaste, Bakhtawar!). The PMINAC team had the chance to catch up with our very own PMI board director Randy Black. Then it was off to the PMI Bookstore before heading into the day’s sessions.

Carey Lohrenz, the first female US Navy F-14 Tomcat fighter pilot, delivered a riveting keynote about facing your fears and leading with conviction. Phil was a little star-struck! Check out Carey’s latest book, “Fearless Leadership: High-Performance Lessons from the Flight Deck”.

Carey Lohrenz Oct 2017

Phil and Carey


We attended more great breakout sessions throughout the day, and joined Phil’s LIMC colleagues for dinner at Andy’s Jazz Club that evening.

Exhibition hall Oct 2017

Saturday was an ‘overlap’ day – for the first time, PMI held the last LIM sessions in the morning, dovetailing with the global conference in the afternoon. The exhibition hall is enormous, and served all 3,000+ attendees comfortably.

Sue had the opportunity to shake hands with one of the founding members of PMI himself, James Snyder – it was Sue’s turn to be star-struck!

James and Sue Oct 2017

Saturday morning’s keynote and the inventor of the World Wide Web, Sir Tim Berners-Lee fascinated the audience with the story of how the internet came to be, and answered questions about what he sees coming down the pike over the next 50 years – more internet of things such as the self-driving cars that exist today, the critical need for net neutrality, and the dawn of artificial intelligence, with a cautionary note about AI’s potential ability to make decisions, and the question of accountability and liability for those decisions. (Skeptical? The future is already here!)

Sir Tim Berners Lee

This incredible day wrapped up with the PMI Professional Awards Gala. The audience was surprised and delighted with performances by the Chicago All That Jazz Revue.

We were especially thrilled to cheer on our PMISAC colleagues from Calgary when they won the Community Advancement through Project Management award.

PMISAC Oct 2017

Sunday – the PMINAC team headed back to the airport at the crack of dawn to catch flights back to Edmonton (thankfully, no pictures were taken of us at 5:00am!). On the plane, we reflected on our experiences, and wanted to share a few takeaways:

  • It’s time to take our chapter to the next level – we have already accomplished so much throughout our 35+ years as a chapter, and we’re ready to lead PMINAC into the bright future ahead. Watch for new initiatives such as academic outreach, mentoring and chapter membership promotions.
  • We have the technology! – PMI provides a wealth of information, tools and support to all chapters. PMINAC is excited to take advantage of all the technology that PMI has to offer – CRS, VRMS, VoteNet and much more.
  • Sustainability is key – a common theme throughout the LIM was for chapters to take a longer-term strategic view of their operations. Our chapter has a strategic action plan in place, and we have taken steps to ensure our financial stability and sustainability well into the future.

Bakhtawar Oct 2017

Phil, Bilal, Bakhtawar and Sue are very grateful for the opportunity to represent PMINAC on the global project management stage, and we’re looking forward to everything we can accomplish in the years ahead, together with you, our valued PMINAC members!

Sue Bakhtawar Randy Bilal Phil Oct 2017

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