PMO Skills

PMOs Supporting Modern Project Management – Servant Leadership

Modern project management has been mainly focused on the different methods and delivery approaches for managing projects and programmes. Waterfall, Lean, SCRUM, Kanban, Agile – the list goes on. Utilising the right approach for the right project is key, yet the biggest success factor for successful projects remains the same – effective leadership and management of people in project environments. Over the next few weeks we are going to cover several different frameworks, approaches and techniques that the modern project practitioner can utilise in their day-to-day work that make a difference to people and their performance levels. We also share ten different things your PMO can be thinking about to make a real difference to the performance of your PMO. We're going to look at the following areas: servant leadership; facilitation, coaching and; conflict management. This article covers the first, servant leadership.
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Emotional and Personal Intelligence for PMO Professionals

You’re likely familiar with Emotional Intelligence (EI), a constellation of abilities that allows us to make good decisions when confronted with emotional information. Recent studies into non-cognitive space, however, suggest that EI is not really sufficient to predict the tremendous variation in responses we observe when people have to make these decisions. Through laboratory work, we’ve come to learn that motivational competencies are just as important to these outcomes as emotional ones. They’re very different from one another, however, and so need to be measured independently. We’ve also come to recognize that the skills needed to experience emotions in ourselves is fundamentally and subjectively different from the ability to interpret these same emotions in other people. It’s because of these observations that the measurement of non-cognitive competencies has been redesigned
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PMO – Carrot or Stick?

Have you heard it been said about the PMO that they fall into two camps, carrot or stick? On last week's session about the Sponsors and the PMO (full video etc ready soon), it was mention in relation to how the PMO can work with sponsors, and in the picture to the right, that was pulled from a session we did about lessons learnt a while back. Apart from being able to draw nice pictures of carrots and sticks, what does it really mean? Ultimately it's all about punishment-and-reward motivational techniques, just like with children, we reward when they do something they should do and remove privileges when they don't. Originally applying to animals, it describes whether to get it to move by enticing the animal with a nice juicy carrot in front of it as a reward, or beating it with a stick. Getting the animal to move is the objective or target, and the carrot and stick are a means of achieving it. BCF Group Carrot or Stick? Management is already full of anecdotes about using "carrot and stick" as a means to motivate people, and whilst many think it conjures up a terrible image, you can't deny that it's memorable and certainly sparks conversation, debate and ideas. So what does it mean in the PMO context?
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PMO Music to Our Ears

Every so often it's good to take a sideways view at PMO - think differently, a bit of lateral thinking, that kind of thing. During the pandemic on the weekly #PMOwfh sessions, we liked to throw in a few different things and in this article, it was all about what we can learn from music. So sit back whilst we bring wedding singers, jazz bands, Roger Daltrey and Elvis to the PMO context and hopefully give you a little food for thought - or music to your ears.
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Emerging from Lockdown with PMO Flashmob

In this session, we turned once again to the more personal side of the effects of the lockdown and we were really pleased to have Sharon De Mascia join us. Sharon is the author of a book I love - Project Psychology - so I naturally thought of her when looking for someone to talk to us about the effects of lockdown on the workplace and people.
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Soft Skills and the PMO Practitioner

In the last webinar we did, there was a question about soft skills and PMO practitioners today. You can see the webinar [here] The session was abot maturity - getting better at what the PMO does as well as the need for the organisation to mature in the way it delivers its programmes and projects too. An obvious part of that is how we, as PMO practitioners, also view maturity in the way we work - not just the 'hard skills' stuff but also how we behave and work with others - the soft skills stuff. The four soft skills pulled out of the session - communication; storytelling; stakeholder management and leadership - were just the presenter's view. I decided to share it in a post on Linkedin and see what others [came up with too] We've also pulled together a few others from recent PMO Flashmob conversations too. What do you reckon? What's missing? Why not add your comments below or join the conversation stream over on Linkedin.  
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The PMO as a Facilitator

Back in April our Mini-Masterclass event was focused on facilitation skills - a skill every PMO professional should have. In this session we specifically focused on the planning side of facilitation. The planning is an incredibly important part of facilitation, as that’s where the thinking has to go into exactly how we will achieve the outcomes of the task. How to break a task down into sub-tasks; decide what processes/techniques are to be used for each step; how to split the groups to make it effective, and take into account the nature of the task in terms of level of uncertainty, who will be involved and the time available. Not enough time and thought is put into planning a session, so if we, as PMO professionals can be disciplined about doing this, it can make a huge difference in getting more successful outcomes from sessions, and better results for the project teams. Ranjit Sidhu lead the session and introduced a high-level framework which she uses as part of the Facilitation Skills course which she regularly delivers.
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Book Review: Emotional Intelligence for Project Managers

Academic research tells us that project success correlates to emotional intelligence (not IQ) and consequently emotional intelligence is now recognised as a requisite skill for project managers. Anthony Mersino has written a book that provides advice on applying emotional intelligence specifically within the project management environment. The book starts with an introduction to emotional intelligence and Mersino’s emotional intelligence framework. It explains how the reader can become more aware of their emotions and gives advice on how to control and manage those emotions. The author then explains how the reader can use emotional intelligence to manage both stakeholders and project teams.
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PMO Conference 2018 \\ Developing PMO Servant Leaders – Richard Hendrickse

The increasing exposure of agile methodologies has raised the subject of servant leadership (706,000 hits on Google!). However, the level of understanding of servant leadership remains low and needs to be raised if the PMO are going to gain real value from it. Gain that understanding and the link between servant leadership and the developing role of the PMO.
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The Agile PMO

A few weeks ago we were at Project Challenge and we did a presentation to go alongside the new Inside PMO Report which we launched at the show too. For those of you not familar with the Inside PMO Reports we do one a year on a topic area we know you're talking about or getting to grips with. We invite PMO Managers, who are doing a good job working on these topic areas, treat them to lunch then interrogate them. Well not quite, but we do ask loads of questions to find out how they dealt with certain things or the approach they might have taken. We record that and after a few months of weeping whilst pulling it together in readable form, we create the report and share it with you.
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