We Are DIA: Community Report

DIA Thanks Project Management Community Chair

Mark Kryah
The DIA community thanks Mark Kryah (Executive Director/Program Team Leader, Ultragenyx) for his four years of service as DIA Project Management Community Chair.

Project management in the biopharmaceutical industry is different than in other industries, Mark explains: “Drug development is iterative, and you have to respond to different data as you receive it. You often need to make big pivots in your plans driven by data you get from different clinical or other experiments. The iterative nature would be the big difference. You just can’t predict what science is going to do. That’s why we do the experiments.

“We’ve seen project managers and program leaders move from tools and processes to more of a true leader on drug development teams,” Mark continues. “The skills needed to be an effective program leader are real leadership skills: influence without direct authority, effective communication in a variety of forms, ability to see the big picture, all to lead important strategic decisions for a program.

“We have a strong, strong group and we work together as a team to drive the discipline forward. This is all volunteer work, so we’re doing it because we’re passionate about it, and I’m happy and fortunate that I was able to play a small part for a period of time.”

Elizabeth Somers (Executive Director of Infectious Disease, Global Project and Alliance Management, Merck Sharp & Dohme LLC) will serve as the new community chair.