Seven Ah-ha Moments

It’s another of our 12 Stand Up for PMO Days Before Christmas and in this post we’re sharing seven (swans a-swimming) things the delegates learnt plucked from the ah-ha board we had.

The idea of an unconference is to share as much of the insights you can and for us that meant good old post-it notes after the Breakout at the Bar sessions and from thoughts after listening to some of the sessions.

Here we share seven insights:


If feels good to know you’re on the right track with your PMO. Spending time with a room full of PMO tends to do that. Understanding that it’s a journey; that it will take time and you’ll be OK is a simple ah-ha moment that does wonders for the psyche. It’s reassuring to know that people have similar issues and challenges and together things like PMO Flashmob events can bring those out and we can start to work on them as a community. [Make sure you get to an event in 2019]


Closing down a PMO is a good thing – we’re talking temporary programme and project offices – things to think about; planning it; who takes accountability for it (and the stuff that needs to be handed back to a permanent PMO); make sure the benefits are also accounted for – and someone takes responsible for it; and think about what the people need – not only the delivery teams but the PMO staff too – what next for them. [P3O Foundation covers the close down for temporary PMOs](PMO Learning link)


Lessons learnt is not just about logging them in a database – the [lessons learnt session] got people thinking about different ways that could work in their organisation. The Call 3 at the initiation stage of the project was one that was mentioned a lot. Things like the kick-off templates shoud include a section that features lessons learnt from other projects. And just thinking about the  component parts of the process can help us to be a little more inventive in our thinking.


Metrics and measures for the PMO – are we doing a good job? Are we adding value? What KPIs, metrics and measures should there be? A great takeaway and it’s so simple you’ll be wondering why you didn’t think of it. For the PMO to be successful = there should be no surprises! That’s right, ask your PM or Programme Managers and see what they think, what would be a nasty surprise for them and how can your PMO prevent it?


The evolution of the PMO – the part where we talked about refreshing the PMO and the session delivered by Adam Skinner mentioned 3T Reporting. That’s track, trend and target.

We liked the simplicity:


There’s quite a lot we can be doing with sponsors – help to educate them on their responsibilites; work closer with them; demonstrate the ‘value’ of the PMO to them and bring in PMO Principles to show how it fits with the organisation strategy. Involve your sponsor from the beginning in identifying business drivers and objectives of the PMO.
[Find out more about PMO Principles here] and [The Role of the PMO with Sponsors]


The best way to peel a post-it note is to peel from side-to-side at the top [there’s even a YouTube video on it!]


About Lindsay Scott

Lindsay is the founder of PMO Flashmob and a Director at PMO Learning - the sister company to PMO Flashmob and the best training company for PMO people in the world! She's also the creator of London's first dedicated PMO Conference; Director of Arras People and PMO enthusiast. Loves dogs and gin.

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