By Jen L. Skrabak, PfMP, PMP
The #PMLoveStories theme on ProjectManagement.com in February got me thinking about why I love portfolio management.
1. Portfolio management closes the strategy to execution gap
Simply doing projects better by focusing on scope, time and cost is not improving our success rates. It’s time to improve portfolio management by identifying and selecting the programs and projects with the highest value.
2. The portfolio represents your organization’s actual priorities.
Look for the gap that may exist between what the organization’ says its strategy is and what its portfolio does.
By examining your portfolio, you can start assessing how many programs and projects are truly aligned to the organization’s defined vision, mission, objectives and strategic plan. You can see where the resources are focused and what the actual vs. anticipated performance of the programs and projects are.
In the end, you, the portfolio manager, are the conduit to strategic alignment and execution — a powerful role in an organization if done right. The key is to not only know the portfolio’s status, but also to monitor, react to and embrace change so the highest value work is done.
3. Portfolio managers have to think like CEOs.
For portfolio managers, it’s about more than managing or controlling scope, schedule and cost. You are ultimately accountable for the results. You’re empowered to allocate resources (human and financial), and you have the ability to negotiate with and influence executives to determine the path forward. The portfolio manager is the only person who can oversee and communicate the state of the portfolio by aggregating data into actionable information, ensure the decisions are made in a timely manner, and proactively address key issues, risks, and opportunities.
4. Portfolio managers see the big picture.
How would you describe your portfolio personality when you look at it holistically—aggressive, innovative, keep the lights on, or confused? What’s the overall value your portfolio delivers and how did managing it comprehensively boost that value?
When value is not measured by time, scope, and cost, but aggregate and measurable results, it puts different priorities into focus. That drives the identification, selection, and execution of the right programs and projects.
Share your #PMLoveStories!