Podcast: Skills that PMOs need to be successful partners to businesses, with Lindsay Scott
In this episode, Lindsay Scott chats to Elise Stevens about improving your PMO skills in today’s business world.
Lindsay Scott is an expert at understanding how PMOs can offer a real value to any business they work with. For the past 15 years, she’s managed Arras People, a business dedicated to finding project management staff, using her years of experience as a PMO to inform their choices. For the past four years she’s run PMO Flashmob with business partner Eileen Roden, which is a volunteer network organisation and 21st century gathering of PMO professionals. She passionately believes in PMOs sharing their pains, successes and what they have learnt in the industry.
Elise and Lindsay discuss the challenges PMOs face as an emerging part of project management and how they need to shake off perceptions of them being the ‘Project Police’.
Lindsay believes that before supporting a business, PMOs need to understand what’s required from them across sectors such as IT or Finance. This will help them determine if simple assistance is required, for example with updating project plans and organising workshops, or more complex assistance for projects such as planning a complex portfolio is needed.
Points raised in this podcast with Lindsay Scott:
- Great PMOs need to be agile, nimble and have advanced behavioural skills. They need to continually think laterally about their skills.
- In any organisation you’ll be working with people above you, below you and to your sides. Do you have the conflict management, leadership and managerial skills required for this?
- Often PMOs can feel like the organisations they’re working for are dinosaurs in terms of trying new things. PMOs need to take the opportunity to suggest and leverage tools that encourage this, for example social media.
- If you want to suggest a better way of doing things within a business, you need to focus on the strength of your relationships first.
- Dozens of formal PMO courses can be taken, but sometimes more can be learned from being in the same space as other PMOs and chatting with them. It’s a kind of informal benchmarking that’s learning and development without formal training.