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Highlights from Gartner’s PPM and IT Governance Summit—Part 4: Driving PMO Maturity

Highlights from Gartner’s PPM and IT Governance Summit—Part 4: Driving PMO Maturity

So far, I’ve talked about the role of the EPMO, effective PMO communication, and how a PMO can drive innovation in an organization — all key points from Gartner’s recent PPM and Governance Summit. In this last post from this series, I’ll talk about the fourth and final point: how driving PMO maturity needs to be a reflection of — and a driver of — organizational maturity.

There are two elements to this. First, a PMO must constantly change to adapt to the growing maturity of the organization. But that’s just the passive aspect of this. In a more active role, the PMO needs to indeed drive organizational maturity.

So it’s a matter of assessing and then matching the current needs and maturity of the organization (something half of all PMOs fail to do according to Gartner), and then laying out a roadmap to help the organization think in terms of business capabilities and strategic execution.

This leads me to a subtle, but related, topic: the name of the PMO. I’ve consulted to some organizations where a simple name change better reflected the current role of the PMO and created the right mentality to align the organization. For instance, in one organization with multiple PMOs, I suggested the newly create “Enterprise PMO” be called a Project Support Office instead. First, it removed some of the stigma of “EPMO as methodology police” and better reflected the fledgling PMO’s goal to support and integrate the other existing (and more mature) PMOs. As a PMO matures, it might be called a Strategic Execution Office, or Business Capabilities Center, or something that reflects the growing scope and maturity of the PMO.

And mature it must. To make a difference in the organization, the PMO can’t just “document the battle” — they must lead the charge. This means driving toward best practices around business capabilities, optimizing projects and aligning resources based on business value, and leading to faster and more innovative initiatives though adaptive models.

Indeed, as Garner validates in their summit kickoff, rethinking the role of the EPMO; reshaping PMO communication; revitalizing the organization toward greater adaptability and innovation; and reclassifying the PMO as a reflection of — and driver of — organizational maturity, will reposition the PMO as a key and vital component of organizational success.

Related post: Highlights from Gartner’s PPM and IT Governance Summit — Part 3: Be an Enabler, Not a Disabler

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Jerry Manas
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Jerry Manas is an internationally best-selling author, speaker, and consultant. He is frequently cited by leading voices in the world of business, including legendary management guru Tom Peters (“In Search of Excellence”), who often references Manas’s bestselling book Napoleon on Project Management for its insights on simplicity and character, and Pat Williams, Senior VP of the Orlando Magic, who called Manas’s book Managing the Gray Areas “a new path for leaders.”

Jerry’s latest book is The Resource Management and Capacity Planning Handbook (McGraw-Hill), which Judith E. Glaser, noted author of Conversational Intelligence, touted as “the first book dedicated to what is essentially the drivetrain of organizations—the effective use of its people toward its most important activities.”

Through his consulting company, The Marengo Group, Jerry helps clients maximize their organizational people resources, leading to a grater capacity to innovate, a more value-focused workforce, and an increased ability to adapt to change. He is a popular speaker at events around the world, speaking on lessons from history, resource planning, organizational change, and other topics. Jerry’s work has been highlighted in a variety of publications, including the Houston Chronicle, Chicago Sun Times, National Post, Globe and Mail, Huffington Post, and others.

@jerrymanas (Jerry Manas on Twitter)