About

Suzanne S. Davenport

Welcome to my personal page where I talk a bit more about myself and why I believe so strongly in this mission to reinvent work.

After many years of studying and working in the project management field, I became completely frustrated with how projects were being planned and managed. I spent a couple of years questioning everything I knew about project work, going back to first principles. I began dreaming about what project management, if it were done well, might look like. Ultimately, I created and tested working software that met many of my goals.

Sadly, at the time, I knew it needed artificial intelligence, but I didn’t think the technology was sufficiently developed. Certainly not at a price point that I could afford.

Over the years, while coaching, consulting, and marketing the Smart Projex methodology, I began exploring blockchain and wrote about the possibility of managing projects on the blockchain. Simply put, this technology, together with AI could help build trust, establish appropriate transparency, provide real-time asset tracking, improve estimations, eliminate much of the mundane aspects of project management, and reduce scope changes by using smart contracts.

My research into brain science became support for many of the principles that I built into the Smart Projex methodology, including the need for teams to talk with one another. While others seem to be moving towards technology as the solution to many of our problems, I believe it is the combination of technology and people – talking and working together – that offers the best path. I outlined my thoughts in a book, Herding Smart Cats: Project Management Reimagined, that I published in 2022.

When I published it, I wrote that we were at an inflection point that presented great opportunIties. And that was before ChatGPT was introduced. I’m incredibly optimistic but not naive.

I am now in conversation with global experts about building Smart Projex 2.0 (by any name) on the blockchain. I have returned to first principles again and I’m asking hard questions.

  • Is work, as we know it now, broken? Can we fix it?
  • How can we more effectively collaborate with enemies or people we simply do not know?
  • Is there an easier way to utilize gig workers effectively when it makes sense?
  • Can we build a software solution that allows adverse parties to collaborate AND protects trade secrets?
  • Why can’t all work be managed in a solution that would provide executives with reliable and comparable data on all of their investments – both project, product, and operational investments?

I’m increasingly worried about this spec in space that we all call our home. Unconstrained technological development, drained workforces, the threat to democracies, and the need for better global collaboration haunt me. Our future on this planet depends on our ability to learn how to work well together.

According to Deep Mind founder, Mustafa Suleyman:

In the coming decades, a new wave of technology will force us to confront the most foundational questions our species has ever faced. Do we want to edit our genomes so that some of us can have children with immunity to certain diseases, or with more intelligence, or with the potential to live longer? Are we committed to holding on to our place at the top of the evolutionary pyramid, or will we allow the emergence of AI systems that are smarter and more capable than we can ever be? What are the unintended consequences of exploring questions like these?

[Source: The Coming Wave: Technology, Power, and the Twenty-first Century’s Greatest Dilemma, p. 67]

I want my grandchildren to grow up in a world that feels safe, fun, productive, beautiful, and kind. And I’m ready to take the next steps to help make that happen.

Interested in joining the conversation, contact me via email or schedule a time on my calendar.

My Qualifications

Selected Work Experience

SSD Consulting, LLC – sample work, 2010 – present

  • Assisted owner of Finite Wisdom (a technology company) and its clients with project management, research, financial, and business process needs.
  • Served as project manager for Human Dynamics Consulting, on a successful change management project for a Commonwealth of Virginia Agency, using Smart Projex methodology.
  • Organized a fundraiser for Richmond Ballet, selling out event and generating higher than estimated profits.

Homeward, Richmond, VA, 2007 – 2008

  • Coordinated HUD SuperNOFA Federal Grant application process, resulting in government awards totaling over $3 million for the prevention and treatment of homelessness. Re-engaged in 2008 to plan the 2008 HUD SuperNOFA Grant Application process.

Well Fargo Securities (formerly Wachovia Securities), Richmond, VA, 2006

  • Collaborated on management of multi-faceted project, accurately documenting or closing securities accounts to comply with regulatory requirements.

kSero Corporation, Inc., Glen Allen, VA, 2005 – 2006

  • As Vice President and Operations Manager, launched advertising, website, strategic planning, operations, marketing and sales projects, growing revenue stream to cover essential expenses within first six months of opening.

Bank of America (formerly First & Merchants National), Richmond, VA, 1976 – 1988

  • Promoted seven times to final position overseeing 10-person Commercial Credit Services Department with responsibility for all operations and project work. Final promotion was to Vice President.

Education

East Carolina University, Greenville, NC
Bachelor of Music, 1971 – 1975

Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA
MBA, 2008 – 2010

University of Richmond, Richmond, VA
Project Management Certificate, 2006

Project Certifications & memberships

Certified Scrum Master (CSM®), 2009

  • Member, Scrum Alliance, Richmond, VA, 2009 – 2016

Certified Project Management Professional (PMP®), 2008

  • Member, Project Management Institute, Richmond, VA, Member 2006 – 2016

Get Yours Today!

Herding Smart Cats: Project Management Reimagined

In this book, Suzanne S. Davenport argues that the technologies and tools that got us where we are today won’t get us where we want to be in the future. She offers a vision of how we could transform project and work management to improve profits.

herding smart cats, learn about project management

Book reviews

As an author, I am an avid reader and enjoy all types of books and learning in general. When I read books that pertain to my work, I love to write reviews and share them with my readers. Here are a few: 

  • Book Review - Think Like a Monk: Train Your Mind for Peace and Purpose Every Day

Trivia Highlights

  • Worst Subject in School: Typing – When I came in and practiced for an hour every single day before class for ten weeks, the instructor, feeling her sense of failure, gave me a passing grade
  • Lowest Score on a Test: “Fun Factor” on a Psychological Assessment that a business psychologist did as a favor for me
  • Most Well-Meaning Act: Waxed my parent’s car with butter because the wax just didn’t make it shine enough
  • Most Embarrassing Moment: Posing for my Dad’s photo shoot, as a sun, in full ballet regalia, including toe shoes, in a packed community azalea garden
  • Most Impactful Decision: When my boss said no to buying me a laptop, I immediately went out and bought my own for my office, setting the stage for bringing individual desktops into a paper office environment
  • Best Decision of Lifetime: Married the right man and had a large family
  • Most Reflective Decision: After years of discernment, study, and frustrations with the status quo, I invested heavily in designing an innovative approach to project management and developed a fully functional software solution.
  • Most Challenging Time: Raising five children, four of whom were in diapers and car seats at the same time, without much outside help.
  • Favorite Types of Projects: Vacations and international travels, home improvement, and Christmas
  • Favorite Software Tool: Sunsama – It helps me stay centered in a world filled with client requests, household needs, technology demands, financial management, exciting travels, family and friend occasions. And it allows me to have time to read books (though never enough), think deeply, and write.
  • Biggest Project Failure: Having a painting stolen in front of security guards at a non-profit fundraiser that I organized. Fortunately, with help from the press, it was recovered
  • Biggest Challenge in 2024: Putting together the right team to build a software solution designed to improve global collaboration during rapid change and ambiguity

Claim your free month of Sunsama

If you want to know more about Sunsama, why don’t you try it using this link? If you decide to keep using it, we’ll both get a month for free! You don’t need a credit card to start the trial, so there’s no risk if you decide it’s not for you. Hope you love it as much as I do.