In our Management for Development Projects and Programme course, our participants are immersed for 4 weeks into the world of project management. Many aspects of project management are covered, always with a focus on maximising the project’s sustainable impact. From Theory of Change and results chains, to managing effectively in an intercultural setting and keeping your team motivated. It’s all covered. Intense? Yes! Fun? Yes! Effective? We spoke to alumni Yordi from Ethiopia to find out what insights she got from the course and how it has helped her improve her day-to-day work as a Programs Advisor" for Talent Youth Association.

First things first: what motivated you to join the course? 

The organisation I work for is growing, so I realised I needed to improve my skills so I can manage bigger teams and bigger programmes. 


What did you learn? 

I never knew that a Theory of Change (ToC) can change over time! It was something we made and never revisited again. Now, I learned it can be reviewed and adapted regularly, of course depending on the context you work in. We just started a 5-year programme, and we are almost done with the first year, but I realised it is already time to review our Theory of Change and check whether our assumptions are supported by reality. We have a new Government; legal situations are changing…and this can all affect the change process that we planned for. Since completing the course, I started working with our team to reflect on the ToC together with our partners. It’s been a very fruitful experience and also a great learning opportunity for the entire team. 

Programme changes, personal changes? 

Apart from learning new approaches, such as outcome mapping, I have also had the opportunity to reflect on and practice my interpersonal skills. I used to think that I was really good at giving and receiving feedback, but the course provided me a great mirror! It was nice to see that there are moments that you can and need to be firmer to make your point. I was too nice! But I also realised it is important to give credit when its due. Take care of yourself and celebrate success! So that’s what I did:  Especially at that time, we had a lot of work, it was too much and very difficult, so being able to finish that and celebrating as a team felt great for everyone involved!