Agile management is about working smarter, not harder! It’s about generating more value from less work. That way the client gets value sooner.

Unfortunately, when it comes to the #PMO, they are often so burdened by politics and rigid processes, it makes working in an agile way very difficult because traditional governance practices are cyclical or periodic in nature. Conceptually, thinking about PMO working in an agile way may appear foreign, strange or downright crazy to some people but unless you have experienced the difference, how do you know which approach is really best?

“Saying your Agile, doesn’t mean you don’t need a plan”

When thinking about agility and the PMO, we need to think about how to do it smarter, and ensure that is integrates well with delivery, otherwise you risk stifling the creativity of delivery teams and getting a bad rap. Then you are back at square one. A PMO that is agile in nature can add new capabilities much faster than a traditionally led PMO. Agile offers PMO’s an incredible opportunity to transform those aspects of their role that do not deliver value to the organisation. So, what do you need to know when considering moving your PMO to more agile ways of working?

Independent Teams

Most PMOs depend on the leader, think about how many times you have seen things become chaotic, or interrupted when the person in charge goes away on holidays? We need to build teams that are not dependent on individuals.


Don’t rigidly apply a methodology conceived elsewhere. Delivery methodologies are for delivery, not for governance. Think about embracing a personalised approach to governance that works for your specific environment, leveraging principles like those referenced in the AMO Method or Agile Manifesto.

“Delivery methods are for delivery”

Permission to Fail

Give permission to fail, so long as you are learning as a result then it is ok to fail. Failure is a big part of learning; I have failed many times in my career. I even failed in my first attempt at a business. It is not all bad, as long as you are documenting the learnings and sharing these insights.

Think Strategic

 It seems now that a lot of #CIOs and #CTOs are seeking a revision of their PMO’s and wanting them to transform to an Agile environment. This is making the market very hard as there’s plenty of understanding of Transformation and Agile methodology, however, without true experiences with successful outcomes. To demonstrate your value, align to the executive and ensure you have their full support.

“If your executive is not supportive, it is because they have not seen value….time to pivot”

Question Why

However, you chose to refer to the Agile movement be it new ways of working, lean etc. Underneath it all, what Agile represents at its core is a mindset. It’s a harnesser for change to be done right, quickly, expertly with minimum fuss and maximum result. This doesn’t happen easily or overnight. Agility is a continuous journey of self-improvement as opposed to a destination.

“It is a collaborative journey”

We want to see PMO’s joining us on this journey. Let us embrace agility and all that it offers us. Let’s not fear failure, lets disrupt and drive value. The more we embrace the mindset the more Agile reveals to us the right ways to take what we need from it to achieve our PMO minimal viable product. As we become Agile and use its structure to re-define our purpose and to frame our continuous improvement, the more we support the organisations we work for in achieving their transformation objectives.

How does a PMO keep up or preferably be ahead

We predict that requirements for insights and service will increase. Service delivery models will change. Teams will comprise, onshore, offshore, geographically dispersed freelancers, business partnerships, anything that delivers the required result will be the go. This needs to be integrated and managed. New ways of working will become just ways of working. Support teams will need to remain constantly responsive and proactive to facilitate this layered experimentation.

If your PMO needs a supportive hand and some innovative ideas to kick off their transformation journey, please get in touch here.

From lite touch mentoring, governance coaching or full-scale delivery and transformation we can help your teams become faster and more efficient.

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