P3 Delivery CEO Charlette Wynn is a Change Leader with 20 years of consulting experience delivering a wide range of services for government (federal and local) and commercial clients. Charlette is known for successfully structuring, implementing, and deploying large complex projects and programs, developing change readiness strategies, and delivering a variety of project management courses for multiple audiences.
Charlette has led cross functional, matrix, remote, and geographically dispersed teams throughout the U.S. and internationally (Brazil, Canada, England, France, India, Spain and Sweden). She has held leadership positions at Michigan Bell (AT&T), GE Capital, Deloitte Consulting, Electronic Data Systems, Travelport and is now the President and CEO of P3Delivery; a management consulting firm built on the principles of strategic program management www.p3delivery.com. P3Delivery is a certified 8a, DBE, MBE and woman-owned business.
Charlette’s corporate, Big Four consulting, and entrepreneur experiences is the foundation of her success. She is a demonstrated leader who can direct individuals and teams towards a common vision and project delivery excellence. Charlette has a consistent track record of exceeding performance expectation.
Charlette’s client delivery experience includes a host of corporate, government (federal and local), and non-profit clients. Her academic and professional credentials are Bachelor of Science Degree (Business Administration – Marketing/Sales Management), Program Management Professional (PgMP), Project Management Professional (PMP), Six Sigma Black Belt, ITIL v3 Foundation Professional, BenchmarkPortal Call Center Auditor and Top- Secret Clearance.
What You’ll Learn in This Episode
- Business operational readiness
- Small business life cycle as a four S.T.E.P™ progression
Intro: [00:00:04] Broadcasting live from the Business RadioX Studios in Atlanta, Georgia, it’s time for GWBC Radio’s Open for Business. Now, here’s your host.
Lee Kantor: [00:00:18] Lee Kantor here. Another episode of GWBC Open for Business, and this is going to be a good one. Today, we have with us Charlette Wynn with P3 Delivery. Welcome.
Charlette Wynn: [00:00:29] Thank you.
Lee Kantor: [00:00:30] Well, I’m excited to learn what you’re up to. Tell us about P3 Delivery, how are you serving folks?
Charlette Wynn: [00:00:35] Well, P3 Delivery is a management consulting firm built on the principles of strategic program management. And the three Ps in P3 Delivery is focused on project programs, business process, and performance management. We’ve been in business actually since 2001. And just to give you a little bit more about our background, the business was started in 2001 under the name MYP Incorporated, which stands for Maximizing Your Potential. I formed that business after leaving Deloitte Consulting, and the goal was to continue to help businesses be more efficient and effective in the delivery of their processes and their programs. And from 2001 to 2016, I kind of worked more as an independent consulting. And then, in 2016, I decided I really wanted to focus on the business in terms of growing the business. And I rebranded under the name P3 Delivery.
Lee Kantor: [00:01:44] Now, in your career journey, how was that transition from working with, like, a large firm, like you did, to having your own business? Where now, I’m the one that’s making all the decisions. I get to decide on the direction. I get to decide on everything. Was that a difficult transition or was it one you enjoyed?
Charlette Wynn: [00:02:04] It’s one I enjoyed. And to be honest with you, I actually have had an entrepreneurial spirit, I think, since the time I’ve graduated out of high school. I was never confident enough, you know, until I got into corporate to think about running my own business. In that period of time, from 2001 to 2016, I kind of went back and forth when I was having a little bit challenges. And so, I believe that the corporate experience, the Big Five consulting experience, gave me the tools and experience to be able to successfully run my own business. So, I’ve enjoyed that transition and I enjoy what I’m doing now.
Lee Kantor: [00:02:48] So, now, in your work today, who is your typical customer? You’re working with those enterprise level firms or working with small to midsized businesses, the government? Like, who is your ideal customer?
Charlette Wynn: [00:03:01] So, ideal is one word. I guess, where my passion is, is actually another, which we’ll talk about in a little while. But right now, I have clients both in the private and the public sector space. Right now, I’m working mostly with Federal Government contracts, but I also have clients that are in local government, smaller clients, nonprofit clients that are in different industries, but all focused on having needs in those three areas, projects, programs, and performance management services.
Lee Kantor: [00:03:44] Now, are there kind of symptoms that your clients are having before they get to know you and what you have to offer that are the triggers that say, “Hey, you know what? We should be calling the folks at P3 Delivery. They can help us get through this.”
Charlette Wynn: [00:03:59] Yes. You know, the symptoms are not being efficient in delivery of their processes. Things are costing them more than should be costing out, you know, in terms of industry averages. So, the triggers are not being able to deliver their projects on time, their employees not having the type of training or readiness to deliver those projects. So, we focus on looking at ways that we can help our clients be more effective and efficient in their project delivery.
Lee Kantor: [00:04:34] And then, what do those initial conversations look like where you’re helping them to see how ready they are to operate?
Charlette Wynn: [00:04:42] First, asking them the questions about their infrastructure. You know, what type of documentation do you have in place to ensure that your team have the right tools and understanding of what needs to be delivered in a consistent way so that you can be efficient? So, it’s really kind of looking at them in terms of assessing their business. We typically start off with some type of assessment to look at, you know, what’s working well, what are some of the opportunities for them to improve, what type of tools are they using to deliver their services, what type of performance management plans do they have to train their employees.
Charlette Wynn: [00:05:28] So, we kind of use what I call, in terms of our approach, a performance- based lifecycle management approach. Just looking end-to-end in terms of how they’re delivering their services and seeing where the gaps are. We have a concept which we call STEEP change. And the STEEP stands for strategies, targeting, efficiencies, effectiveness, and performance. And so, when you think about the lifecycle and phases, we look at where they are in terms of how they plan for their work, how they initiate their work, how do they deliver their work, how do they measure the performance of their work. That’s one way that we look at it.
Charlette Wynn: [00:06:13] But we have other ways that we actually look at how we would asses their business so that we can prescribe the right type of program for them to be more efficient and effective in their delivery.
Lee Kantor: [00:06:26] But something I would imagine that a lot of small businesses struggle with is that documentation, that everything’s in the head of the founder, the entrepreneur, and it never kind of leaves their head. And they have to kind of create the wheel every single time. They don’t have those processes and systems and methodology documented so they could delegate and hand off and train other people.
Charlette Wynn: [00:06:52] Oh, absolutely. So, you remember earlier I said – when you’re asking the question about what’s my most ideal customer and where’s my passion, which can be two different things sometimes. For me, ideal is, you know, the contracts that I have right now, that’s my cash cow. The small businesses or the midsized businesses, in some cases, don’t have the capital or the budget to invest in the services that they know that they need. And so, as a result of that, they’re typically taking or making shortcuts.
Charlette Wynn: [00:07:27] Let me give you an example, so when you think about the lifecycle of a small business, I think of the small business in four phases. Phase 1 is what I call ready for business. They have developed their business plan, their marketing plan. They may have a capability statement. They surely have a website and some business cards. Everything to say I’m open for business. We have a presence.
Charlette Wynn: [00:07:56] Then, Phase 2 is what I call ready to operate. You know, the next ideal stage or phase would be for you to develop your business infrastructure so you’re in a position to deliver services for your clients in the way that they can perform, but that can prevent any risk of any type of failure in their services. And so, you should have documented processes. You should have things like a corporate attorney, your business insurance, but definitely all your processes in place from soup to nuts in terms of your delivery of your services.
Charlette Wynn: [00:08:39] And then, Phase 3 is what I call ready for procurement. You have checked off all of the boxes that a supplier diversity company says is required for you to get a contract with a company. You have your bondy, you have your insurance in place. And then, there’s Phase 4, which I call ready to grow. You have been performing those contracts really well. Now, you’re ready to grow your business and you’re ready to help your client grow the business. You’ll make a substantial change for them.
Charlette Wynn: [00:09:12] What I see typically happens for a small business or midsized business is, they go from ready for business to ready for procurement. And what happens is, when they are in the delivery phase, they run into risk of not having the type of tools and processes to deliver those services in the most effective and efficient way. And what happens as a result of that is, they’re not able to realize the profit that they had planned for. They are creating additional risk for their clients. They experience a lot of waste and they’re not able to be as effective in delivering their processes.
Charlette Wynn: [00:10:00] And so, my passion is to work with small businesses. And I’ve had a couple cases where, I want to say, small businesses that were generating multimillion dollars who did not even have new hire processes documented. And came to me, and I worked with them and helped them to document some of their core processes. And as a result of that, they found themselves operating more efficiently and more effectively. But I see it every day.
Charlette Wynn: [00:10:30] And I’m willing to bet, if you really do a survey on most businesses, or I will say an assessment of most small businesses, they don’t have those type of processes documented. They don’t have the type of metrics in place to measure performance. They’re not looking at readiness in terms of whether their client or their business is ready for change that a project may bring. So, they know they have a need, for example, for a project but they’re not necessarily measuring what I call the change effectiveness.
Charlette Wynn: [00:11:07] So, what I see our differentiators are, is looking at those strategic things like how do we help our clients maximize or optimize their investments? How do we help them ensure that they are realizing the benefits of the projects and programs that they implement and they’re not just checking off a box? And so, that’s what I believe we do really well. And we do it really well because I’ve been doing it for so long. And I’ve been really blessed to work with corporations like AT&T. I worked for GE Capital. I worked for Deloitte Consulting. And I’ve also had clients like Coca-Cola, where we did a $400 million transformation program. And Cox Enterprises.
Charlette Wynn: [00:12:00] And so, I, as the owner of the business, have a passion in the areas of the services that we provide. But the one message that I would share with small businesses is to make sure that you’re ready to operate. And so, we’re working on developing a service that can help small businesses leverage, you know, processes that some of their peers and industry partners have in place today.
Lee Kantor: [00:12:32] And the thing is they can’t skip steps. And that’s, I guess, a trap for a small business. They want to just go, go, go. And they’re trying to maybe accelerate through one of those steps in the lifecycle prematurely.
Charlette Wynn: [00:12:45] Absolutely. That’s what happened to me. You know, in 2001, I left Deloitte with a cocky attitude. You know, I felt like I knew it all because I worked with leaders who were transforming major corporations. I worked on a merger between three large banks. I mean, I had some really key roles in those positions. So, I was cocky and I went into it thinking that I didn’t have to do all those things because I knew them. And so, that’s why I kept having what I call those false starts.
Charlette Wynn: [00:13:18] Literally, from 2001 to 2016, I went back and forth to corporate a few times. And so, in 2016, I decided that I’m either going to be in entrepreneurship and focus on really building my business in a best practice way or I’m going to go back and work as an employee. And so, I really made that investment. You know, I decided that making or generating revenue was not as much of a priority. You know, profit was more important to me, which is another topic we can talk about, the difference between revenue and profit.
Charlette Wynn: [00:13:53] You know, a lot of the small businesses measure success based on revenue. But when you really measure the total cost of the business, because they’re not operating efficiently and effectively, they’re not generating a profit. And so, it’s things like that that I try to work with small business to help them think more strategically.
Charlette Wynn: [00:14:13] I’m working with a client now today on a program where we’re helping these businesses take to the next level. And it’s a cohort of 16 businesses, very strong businesses. Some of them have been in business for years and have realized the same thing that I just realized that we can’t take shortcuts. That we have to go back and assess the business and look at bridging those gaps between those weak areas.
Lee Kantor: [00:14:45] So, now, when you’re working with these small businesses, you mentioned a cohort is there. So, that’s how you’re delivering this learning to them is through this group learning?
Charlette Wynn: [00:14:53] That’s one way. You know, and because I have a passion, I do it in several different ways. You know, think of GWBC. I worked with Roz in actually providing a seminar just to talk about managing projects in a remote environment. So, there was a lot of different topics, a lot of different areas, where I think businesses have a need for that companies like mine or businesses like mine could really share valuable information that can help them get to the next level. So, I do it in a variety of ways and volunteering some of my time. And some of my clients come to me looking specifically for us to help them in those areas.
Lee Kantor: [00:15:40] Now, can you share a story maybe of a client, maybe a smaller one, that was rewarding to you where you really helped them kind of maybe see things a little differently or get to the next level and maybe kind of they outperformed even their wildest dreams.
Charlette Wynn: [00:15:58] Yes. One actually was in a mentor protégé program with Jim STC and they came to me for help in terms of documenting their processes. And this business owner actually had a very good vision that was very strategic. He knew that one of the areas was that they didn’t have their processes documented. He understood the value of it. And so, it was rewarding to me because I saw over the last three years how far this business has grown. And I think a lot of it is attributed to him having consistent documented processes in place to help them deliver the services that they provide because they’re a service-based industry. And I think they understand that collateral, that documentation, that having a process and an infrastructure that was built on being efficient and effective was critical.
Lee Kantor: [00:17:08] It’s that strong foundation. If you build the foundation strong and well, then you’re less likely to kind of be knocked down when the chaos of life comes in, you know, you have a better chance of surviving.
Charlette Wynn: [00:17:21] Exactly. And this pandemic is another example. There were so many businesses that kind of shuffled around because they have things in place, like a business continuity plan. You know, they didn’t have things in place like succession plans. If someone got ill, who took over? And some actually went out of business as a result of it. And so, I always say it’s a soft stuff that’s so hard that is so impactful. And so, it’s important for us to understand as small business owners that we have to make that investment in those soft things to ensure that we can stand strong in times where there’s critical events that happen. But more importantly, just to sustain over the years.
Lee Kantor: [00:18:05] Yeah. I think that people don’t focus on that because it doesn’t seem as urgent. Like, this is the stuff that’s not kind of chirping in their ear, yelling at them about a deadline, or something. And it’s easy to kind of just keep pushing this off into some future you that will get to it and that it just never gets done unless you kind of mindfully put effort and time and prioritize it.
Charlette Wynn: [00:18:28] Absolutely. And the other thing is, again, when I look and I think about our approach – and I call it a performance based lifecycle management – because the other part of it is, they don’t look at how to measure. Or some organizations – and it’s not just small businesses – I don’t think take the time to put in those metrics to truly measure performance. And when I say performance, I’m not just talking about how well an employee do their job. I’m talking about measuring things that are hard to measure, like change, like total cost, like measure the things that you assume are going to happen and they don’t.
Charlette Wynn: [00:19:14] And so, I think that’s where there’s a big opportunity, because when you look at those things, then you’ll start seeing the value in making sure – I call it – those soft things or those things that people kind of put on the side and say, “Yeah. We have a desk reference guide.” Or, “We have procedures in place.” But not really looking at them over time to make sure that they’re updated, to make sure that they’re complete, to make sure that they are effective. So, those are the kind of things that we look at in addition to project delivery. We look at how are you operating, you know, are you effective and are you efficient in delivering your services.
Lee Kantor: [00:19:52] Right. And focusing on, like you said, the metrics that matter. A lot of times people get kind of distracted by these other metrics. We call them here cost metrics. Ones that maybe they look good to the public, but they’re really not that important when it comes to the core business.
Charlette Wynn: [00:20:08] Or to the customer. Because a lot of times we measure value based on what we think is important or what we think is value. But value really is in the eye of the beholder. So, if you have the right measures in place that you’ve checked off with the client and say, “Does this matter to you?” How we’re measuring it, is it correct? Are we measuring enough? I think that will help you get to, you know, meeting the client requirements or making sure that you’re truly adding value. You know, the customer should be defining what that is.
Lee Kantor: [00:20:45] Right. And you shouldn’t assume you know what it is more than they do.
Charlette Wynn: [00:20:49] Exactly.
Lee Kantor: [00:20:51] So, now, you mentioned earlier GWBC and other associations and organizations that you’re part of. Can you talk about why it was important for you to get involved with GWBC and become certified?
Charlette Wynn: [00:21:03] Well, one is the leader is so supportive of small businesses. I thought it was important to get involved with a network of women business owners that are supportive to one another, that have common goals and opportunities for partnerships. I met Roz Lewis actually at another event. And I knew about the organization, but had not really investigated it enough because I was already a member of a couple of other organizations. But she was very supportive and shared with me a lot of the things that they’ve been doing.
Charlette Wynn: [00:21:40] And I started watching what they were doing and just felt like, not only could I become part of an organization that, you know, I have other women business owners that think like me and willing to partner, but it was an area where I can also share my lessons learned and that I can give back and add some value to that organization as well.
Lee Kantor: [00:22:01] And I think that that’s an important part, a lot of times and a lot of business folks, maybe, that’s not top of mind is that legacy and to give back and to really serve the community. That’s a great point. I think a lot of people forget about that. And I find most entrepreneurs and business leaders are super generous and they want to help and lift other people up.
Charlette Wynn: [00:22:25] You know, we’re stronger together. I think, I want to say, one of the missed opportunities, especially when it comes to minority owned businesses, is that we need to support each other more. I think we’re stronger together. I think we need to share more, you know, in terms of of what we know, given a proprietary information or affecting your business. I think we have opportunity to mentor more, to work together more, to partner more. And so, I think that sharing of lessons learned and sharing of best practices, it helps all of us.
Lee Kantor: [00:23:08] Yeah. I agree 100 percent. I think, like you said, we are all stronger together. Now, if somebody wants to learn more about, you know, any side of your business, is there a website that kind of captures some of this information in this generous thought leadership that you have?
Charlette Wynn: [00:23:26] I’m sorry? One more time,
Lee Kantor: [00:23:27] Your website. Is there a website that if people are interested in learning more or want to have a more substantive conversation with you or somebody on your team?
Charlette Wynn: [00:23:35] Yes. Yes. Our website is www.p3delivery.
Lee Kantor: [00:23:40] And it’s the letter P-
Charlette Wynn: [00:23:41] And our telephone numbers 404-294-7774.
Lee Kantor: [00:23:46] And it’s the letter P, the number 3, delivery dot com?
Charlette Wynn: [00:23:50] That’s correct.
Lee Kantor: [00:23:51] And then, on that website, they can find all the information that we talked about today, even the small business stuff?
Charlette Wynn: [00:23:58] They could find all the information today regarding our core business, which is the ideal, you know, business that we’re in now. In terms of my passion around small business, I do have a website that’s not up to date regarding those services. Because we’re working on a couple of things now. So, stay tuned. As soon as we are ready, we will reach back out to you again, Lee, and see if we can get on the show to talk about our service called R To O, Ready to Operate.
Lee Kantor: [00:24:30] All right. I’m excited to learn more about that. But if they want to be on the list or something on your website, they can. There’s a contact us page, they can –
Charlette Wynn: [00:24:38] Contact us at P3 Delivery. You send an email to that address and I can give you more information on our services. P3 Delivery is the best. I’m sorry. Contact us at p3delivery.com.
Lee Kantor: [00:24:53] Right. And the Ps are the project, process, and performance. So, if you want to get better in any aspect of your business, give them a call and check them out. Thank you so much for sharing your story today. You’re doing such important work and we appreciate you.
Charlette Wynn: [00:25:08] Thank you for having us or having me. We appreciate you.
Lee Kantor: [00:25:13] All right. This is Lee Kantor. We will see you all next time on GWBC Open for Business.
The Greater Women’s Business Council (GWBC®) is at the forefront of redefining women business enterprises (WBEs). An increasing focus on supplier diversity means major corporations are viewing our WBEs as innovative, flexible and competitive solutions. The number of women-owned businesses is rising to reflect an increasingly diverse consumer base of women making a majority of buying decision for herself, her family and her business.
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