Rotation perspectives insights and lessons learned
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Rotation Perspectives– Insights and Lessons Learned. December 2, 2009. Panel Participants. Craig Dinsmore of JSC's Engineering Directorate, served a one-year rotation to Headquarters' Office of Program Analysis and Evaluation's Strategic Investments Division

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Rotation perspectives insights and lessons learned

Rotation Perspectives– Insights and Lessons Learned

December 2, 2009


Panel participants

Panel Participants

  • Craig Dinsmore of JSC's Engineering Directorate, served a one-year rotation to Headquarters' Office of Program Analysis and Evaluation's Strategic Investments Division

  • Sophia LeCour of the International Space Station Program, served as assistant to the director for JSC Director Mike Coats, then rotated to Headquarters' Office of External Relations

  • Matt Lemke of the Constellation Program, rotated to the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in support of the Mars Science Laboratory as part of his Space Systems Engineering Development Program experience


Mr dinsmore goes went to washington

Mr. Dinsmore Goes Went to Washington


The work

The Work…..

  • PA&E = Program Analysis and Evaluation (in the Office of the Administrator)

  • Responsible for:

    • Providing programmatic studies and analysis

    • Cost analysis

    • Program cost and schedule performance evaluation

    • Independent program assessment for the agency

    • Assembly of the NASA budget

  • The organization has high-level insight into everything that NASA is doing.


The work1

The Work…..

  • I was in the Strategic Investments Division

    • SID analyses the technical, cost and schedule performance of NASA programs and prepares decision packages for NASA management.

    • Assembles the NASA Strategic Plan

    • Assembles the Budget

    • Negotiates and Communicates NASA program performance goals with the Administration and Congress


The work2

The Work…..

  • Who I got to work with

    • Mission Directorates (SMD, ESMD, SOMD and ARMD)

    • Office of the Chief Engineer

    • Chief Financial Officer

    • Government Accountability Office (GAO-Congress)

    • Office of Management and Budget (White House)

    • Some really smart people…..


The work3

The Work…..

  • Mostly performed analysis on Science Mission Directorate projects. (Did you know that NASA does things other than human space flight?)

  • In NASA’s budget, we commit to the Congress, (the American people) what we are going to accomplish for the money that we are given.

  • Determined how well we adhere to our project cost and milestone schedule commitments

    • What we report internally to ourselves

    • What we report to Congress and the OMB

    • How we perform against the Integrated Budget and Performance Document (IBPD)


The work4

The Work…..

  • Performed Space Station Program Threats vs. Reserves analysis.

  • Helped to define reporting requirements and key decision point milestone definitions for NASA Project and Program Milestones per 7120.5D

  • Helped to define policy for project re-baselining

  • Helped Acquisition Policy Team


The work5

The Work…..


The work6

The Work…..


The work7

The Work…..

  • The best thing about the job –

    What we worked on was presented directly to NASA leadership and we were actually there when decisions were being made based on the analysis and presentations that we provided!


Living in washington dc

Living in Washington DC

So much to do…..

so little time…..


Benefits of the rotation

Benefits of the Rotation…..

  • A better understanding of why Headquarters does what they do and how and where many of our actions and policies originate

  • Appreciation for the complexity of NASA’s mission, programs, projects and processes and how they are balanced within the boundaries of the budget and the political climate

  • Opportunity to meet and work with a few of the really good people who work at Headquarters

  • Realization that work is done at Headquarters much the same way that it is here, by smart people sitting in rooms and making the best decisions that they can with the information that they have.

  • An opportunity to live and work in a city that makes you feel like you are part of something big


Lecour s 10 months adventure through two rotations

LeCour’s 10 Months Adventure Through Two Rotations

Sophia LeCour


Rotations

Rotations

  • 6-month rotation as assistant to the JSC Center Director

  • 4-month rotation at NASA HQ Office of External Relations (OER)


Duties as assistant to the jsc center director

Duties as Assistant to the JSC Center Director

  • Shadowed the center director and other members of the center director's office

  • Provided support by working with the center director staff to ensure the director is properly briefed on upcoming meetings, events and courtesy visits

  • Served as liaison for the center director's office on advisory groups and fact-finding activities

  • Assisted in planning, coordinating, scheduling and logistics of travel for the center director

  • Traveled with the Center Director with the exception of Strategic Management Council (SMC) and Program Management Council (PMC).

  • Worked with the chief of staff to maintain the center director's daily schedule and a long-range planning calendar for the director's suite

  • Considered a member of the Director’s Staff. I had access to the Director’s Reading File, official correspondence from NASA HQ, and other internal documents.


Lessons learned

There is a BIG world out there

Most interesting learning experience of my NASA career.

Learned about JSC, the Programs and the Agency

Take note of the leadership and management styles of the CD and other meeting attendees

Need to expand my knowledge outside my technical area – acquire tools for my tool bag

Importance of Inclusion & Innovation (I&I)

Keep everything in proper perspective – big picture

Lessons Learned


Nasa hq office of external relations oer rotation

NASA HQ Office of External Relations (OER) Rotation

  • The mission of the Office of External Relations (OER) is to provide executive leadership and coordination for all NASA international activities and partnerships and for policy interactions between NASA and other U.S. Executive Branch offices and agencies.

  • OER serves as the principal Agency liaison with the National Security Council, the Office of Science and Technology Policy, the Department of State, and the Department of Defense.

  • OER also directs NASA’s international relations; negotiates cooperative and reimbursable agreements with foreign space partners; provides management oversight and staff support of NASA’s advisory committees, commissions and panels; manages the NASA Export Control Program and foreign travel by NASA employees and manages the NASA History Division.


Sophia s activities at oer

Sophia’s Activities at OER

  • At the request of Mr. Gerstenmaier, worked with Office of Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs on the Questions For the Record (QFRs) by performing a consistency cross-check on the answers.

  • Supported the STS-124 Guest Op activity

  • NASA Point of Contact for the International Astronautical Federation (IAF) Special Symposium

  • Supported the Multilateral Coordination Board (MCB) and Heads of Agency (HOA) meetings

  • Attended the Center for Strategic & International Studies “Space Launch after the Shuttle” Event

  • Attended the Commerce, Science, and Transportation, Senate Subcommittee on Space, Aeronautics and Related Sciences (Chairman Bill Nelson)

  • Attended a week long Congressional Operational Seminar

  • Participated and volunteered at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival

  • Attended three embassy events


Lessons learned1

There is a REALLY BIG world out there

Quote from Glynn Lunney “HQ is a different planet”

HQ operates differently from JSC

It was difficult for a short term detailee to get a real assignment due to HQ’s rigid culture

Due to HQ environment and DC surroundings, bureaucracy is prevalent

“Information is power” might be the nature of just being inside of the beltway

Have a better understanding how HQ operates

Expanded my network and enhanced working relationship (e.g., Legislative & Intergovernmental Affairs, mission directorates)

Lessons Learned


Rotation perspectives insights and lessons learned

Systems Engineering Leadership Development Program (SELDP)Jet Propulsion LaboratoryMars Science Laboratory

Highlights & Thoughts

Matt Lemke

May contain Caltech/JPL proprietary information and be subject to U.S. Government Export Laws; U.S. recipient is responsible for compliance with all applicable U.S. export regulations. Pre-Decisional: For Planning and Discussion Purposes Only.


Project overview

Project Overview

Science

Focus on Past & Present Habitability of Mars

Highly Capable Analytical Laboratory

Next Generation Remote Sensing & Contact Investigations

Suite of Environmental Monitoring Instruments

Technical Capabilities

One Mars Year surface operational

lifetime (669 sols/687 days)

Discovery Responsive over wide range of

latitudes and altitudes

Precision Landing via Guided Entry

Skycrane Propulsive Landing

Long Distance Traverse Capability (20 km)

Flexible & Robust Sample Acquisition & Processing

May contain Caltech/JPL proprietary information and be subject to U.S. Government Export Laws; U.S. recipient is responsible for compliance with all applicable U.S. export regulations. Pre-Decisional: For Planning and Discussion Purposes Only.


Msl spacecraft major elements

MSL Spacecraft Major Elements

Cruise Stage

Backshell Interface Plate (BIP)

Parachute Support Structure (PSS)

4.5m x 3.5m

Backshell

Parachute

Descent Stage

Bridle & Umbilical Device

Rover

Separations & Pyros

Heatshield with MEDLI

May contain Caltech/JPL proprietary information and be subject to U.S. Government Export Laws; U.S. recipient is responsible for compliance with all applicable U.S. export regulations. Pre-Decisional: For Planning and Discussion Purposes Only.


Entry configuration

Entry Configuration

L

Backshell Interface Plate (BIP)

D

BACKSHELL

Vent (x2)

HEATSHIELD

RTG Access Door

V

Cruise Balance Mass and Separation Mechanisms (x2)

g

May contain Caltech/JPL proprietary information and be subject to U.S. Government Export Laws; U.S. recipient is responsible for compliance with all applicable U.S. export regulations. Pre-Decisional: For Planning and Discussion Purposes Only.


Sky crane flyaway configuration

May contain Caltech/JPL proprietary information and be subject to U.S. Government Export Laws; U.S. recipient is responsible for compliance with all applicable U.S. export regulations. Pre-Decisional: For Planning and Discussion Purposes Only.

Sky Crane / Flyaway Configuration

Skycrane Configuration

Flyaway Configuration


Rotation perspectives insights and lessons learned

May contain Caltech/JPL proprietary information and be subject to U.S. Government Export Laws; U.S. recipient is responsible for compliance with all applicable U.S. export regulations. Pre-Decisional: For Planning and Discussion Purposes Only.


Rotation perspectives insights and lessons learned

Stacked Spacecraft in Cruise STV

Stacked Spacecraft in Acoustic Chamber

May contain Caltech/JPL proprietary information and be subject to U.S. Government Export Laws; U.S. recipient is responsible for compliance with all applicable U.S. export regulations. Pre-Decisional: For Planning and Discussion Purposes Only.


Underside of cruise stage

Underside of Cruise Stage

May contain Caltech/JPL proprietary information and be subject to U.S. Government Export Laws; U.S. recipient is responsible for compliance with all applicable U.S. export regulations. Pre-Decisional: For Planning and Discussion Purposes Only.


Descent rover stage

Descent/Rover Stage

May contain Caltech/JPL proprietary information and be subject to U.S. Government Export Laws; U.S. recipient is responsible for compliance with all applicable U.S. export regulations. Pre-Decisional: For Planning and Discussion Purposes Only.


Seldp rotation

SELDP Rotation

  • Rough Start to my rotation

    • Days after starting the project slips to the next launch window

    • Project becomes focused on re-planning and reducing staff from 750+ to ~300 in six weeks

      • My sponsor/mentor was one of the first casualties

      • No time for me

    • Had to create my own position when I returned from Christmas

      • Way out of my comfort zone – great leadership learning experience

  • Tasks

    • Managed the technical issues list for the chief engineer

      • Gave me access to all lead engineers and a seat at the table when issues were being discussed

    • Participated on the fault protection red team (tiger team)

      • Avionics and software re-architected to meet failure tolerance requirements and testability issues

    • Facilitated the review of system design documents

      • Design is an SE function, engineers are just implementers

  • First significant exposure outside of the world of avionics

    • vehicle level and beyond considerations


Observations

Observations

  • Risk was a part of every discussion

  • SMA integrated into team

    • Project’s job was to ensure mission was successful

    • SMA’s job was to ensure mission didn’t fail

  • “Fly like you test”

    • Testing program constraints drove how the vehicle was operated

  • “Test like you Fly”

    • Exceptions taken very seriously, reviewed at every TRR and major review

    • No blanket exceptions

  • Life testing and testing beyond qualification

  • Reserve Management


Observations cont

Observations (cont)

  • Very quick to write Problem Reports

    • Must find root cause and be able to duplicate a problem before a fix is put in place

    • Focus is on the problem and the solution – not the paperwork

      • Requires CogE, line management, project management, SMA to close PFR

  • Institutionalized rules for project design, management, reserves, etc…

    • Project goes to center management for waivers to the rules

    • Not a big deal … but bring a sound technical story

  • True Matrix organization

    • PM wouldn’t think of making a decision until they knew line management agreed with the technical approach and risks

  • Upper Management very visible

    • Lots of all hands

    • Attendance at working meetings

    • Line management switches with project management frequently


Observations cont1

Observations (cont)

  • What a difference a shared vision can make

    • Laser focus on successful mission

    • Everyone fully committed to the outcome

    • Confrontational meetings – beer afterwards

  • Cross cutting SE and Phase Leads

    • Value of technical interchange meetings

  • Optimizing across system boundaries

    • My view of this was limited – operations can play a big role


Rotation perspectives insights and lessons learned

Q & A


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