On Program Management: An Adaptive Approach for the Evolving Business Environment (Part 1)

PMI Atlanta Chapter

Eric Norman is a skilled management consultant and leader with extensive business process design experience supporting a broad array of industries. Over the past 25 years, he has specialized in program management - mentoring, consulting and leading project, program and business process improvement efforts.

Note: Because this is a lengthy discussion, I’ve divided it into two parts. Part 1 establishes the context for Part 2, which is focused on our roles in an ever-changing organizational landscape.

In this discussion, I will offer some thoughts about how the business functions of project, program and portfolio management bring about change within organizations. I’ll also speak about the challenges we face in our roles as leaders responsible for shepherding these change efforts in the organizations we support. But most importantly, I want to underscore the new, rapidly evolving and somewhat unsettling business context in which we find ourselves.

I’m highlighting our work in the context of the business environment because we do not operate alone, apart from the machinery and conduct of the business. No, today we work in a rapidly evolving and somewhat unfamiliar organizational terrain that seems at once elusive, mystifying and frankly a bit frustrating.

Changes, Changes
It’s no secret: Our work environment has changed in a significant way in recent years. Today, more than ever, it’s fast moving, continuously evolving, endlessly connected, small and entrepreneurial, vast and expansive…all at the same time.

And indications are that the organizational evolution currently underway will continue for the foreseeable future. Organizational…

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Half this game is ninety percent mental.

- Yogi Berra