Tout your winners

Look at me, look at me, look at me now!

PMOs too often get painted as the dour “project police”.  Our willingness to deliver results without demanding attention and praise is one of the more attractive character traits of project management culture.  But as noted in Jeannette Cabanis-Brewin’s post on The Million-Dollar Question: What’s the Value of a PMO?, delivering results quietly can be a trap:

[O]nce the systems for executing strategy through well-run projects are in place, it’s tempting to think you can rest on your laurels. But, no such luck. When project and program management is working well, it’s invisible: nothing bad happens. And the PMO becomes, apparently, a line item of overhead.

Jeannette notes that many PMO leaders shy away from marketing their PMO after it has been established.  During the PMO project itself, we all seem to understand the importance of stakeholder management and communications.  But when we become a function, we forget that lesson or think it unseemly, inappropriate, etc.

I’m not suggesting we crassly broadcast our successes.  Perhaps “narrowcasting” is the better idea — a discreet word with the CIO about identifying a poorly-priced deal ripe for re-negotiation, a walkthrough of high and low profit projects with a sales manager, etc.

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