Project Management

The Lazy Project Manager

Peter Taylor is the author of two best-selling books on ‘Productive Laziness’ – ‘The Lazy Winner’ and ‘The Lazy Project Manager’. In the last 4 years he has focused on writing and lecturing with over 200 presentations around the world in over 25 countries and has been described as ‘perhaps the most entertaining and inspiring speaker in the project management world today’. His mission is to teach as many people as possible that it is achievable to ‘work smarter and not harder’ and to still gain success in the battle of the work/life balance. More information can be found at – and through his free podcasts in iTunes.

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The Meaningless Blog

Can I borrow you for a sec because I’m stacked? It will be a win-win situation. I have been blue sky thinking and want to keep you in the loop on my thinking outside of the box, as well as picking your brains, I’m just playing devils’ advocate on this teamwork/dreamwork idea. Will it work? Well how long is a piece of string?

Have I lost you? I suspect I have as the above paragraph includes all ten of the most annoying things people say in the office according to a survey of 2,000 people by recruitment website

Rubbish aren’t they – time for a paradigm shift, we can’t boil the ocean with limited bandwidth but there is low hanging fruit out there so let’s tee it up, circle back, take it offline and do more with less. We need to break the silos to move the needle because it is what it is. What we must do at the end of the day is run it up the flagpole, bite the bullet, peel back the layers of the onion and take it, if push comes to shove, to the bleeding edge. Making sure we are not out of pocket, which is par for the course, let’s get one throat to choke whilst opening the kimono, and synergise as we all drink the Kool Aid. Awesome!

Clearer? I think not, you have no idea what I am on about do you and no surprise. That paragraph included twenty five of the most overused phrases from Business Insider UK. The thing is that they were all once a neat and creative way of expressing a thought or an idea but overuse has made them into at first clichés and then just bloody annoying things that some of our work colleagues roll out regularly on calls and at meetings, presumably because they can’t think of anything intelligent to say instead. Clichés appear to make you connected to what is going on without actually having to have any real understanding or anything of value to contribute. It is like a code that just gets you out of a tricky moment.

Question: ‘What do think of this new approach?’

Answer: ‘You have my buy-in on this particular swim lane, I like the core competency and feel empowered as a result’

Yes, I am back at it again, this time looking at the Forbes most annoying business jargon list.

There are lots of moving parts when you put your best practice ducks in a row and leverage the scalable solution from the burning platform. It is imperative that we drill down and smell the coffee in this one-stop shop because today is the day, all 24/7 of it, and tomorrow, like our children, is our future.

Oh my, it is addictive isn’t it?

So please, be a rock star … and stop! 

Posted on: December 04, 2018 07:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (12)

Monetising the PMO (Part 3)

So how do you go about the monetizing process, assuming that you have the solid foundations already discussed?

Well this is a challenging one. I ran the question across 10 LinkedIn groups who focused on ‘PMOs’ and , whilst I normally find these groups and their members a very fertile source for comment and insight, the responses received were very meagre indeed and with little insight in to this area of PMO activity. Many people ‘liked’ the conversation but only a couple had any insight to share.

I take it from this that few PMOs have made the move in to the revenue generating world. Is that because it makes no sense to do this? Or is it because these PMOs are not yet mature enough to do so? Or perhaps it is just not seen as a sensible path for a PMO to follow?

Whilst PMOs are on the increase, as shown in many reports including the PMI Pulse 2013 report, there are many PMOs that are challenged and immature and therefore do not pass the ‘test’ earlier described for considering moving to a profit centre.


But assuming you do wish to lead your PMO this way – I applied some thought to the approach, the ‘how’:

  • Start small
  • Start focused
  • Start with a proof of concept and have a withdrawal plan ready – now if you are recruiting new head(s) to deliver this new initiative you need to consider what happens to them if it doesn’t work out?
  • Find the ‘pain’ – behind every service based revenue earning opportunity there has to be a ‘need’ and behind that ‘need’ is a pain, something that the customer is willing to pay to ‘go away’ or to ‘reduce the risk of happening’. You may well need to reach out to the other customer facing teams to understand the areas that your PMO could service and then customise your offerings accordingly
  • Use your best and proven resources to deliver these new services and backfill the resulting PMO resource gap with new resource – less risk to your new PMO venture and better communication throughout with your ‘proven’ resource
  • Market  what you offer – Proactively ‘sell’ what you offer – Develop proof points through ‘success stories’ – and then Re-market, over and over again

What business problem is the PMO going to help to solve?

There is proven wisdom in the advice that the PMO should only act on what is strategically important to the business and so the question has to be ‘what is the strategic value in monetizing the PMO?

  • If the reason is to fund expansion of PMO activities internally – Then this is a ‘Poor’ reason
  • If the reason is to protect the PMO budget? – Then this is a ‘Bad’ reason
  • But if the  reason is to secure customer (external) project success (and new business in time) through the application of the PMO skillset and service offerings – Then this could be a ‘Good’ reason

But bear in mind one risk to this move; the PMO operates for the most part in an objective manner, considering project approval, looking at risk, assessing status and applying guidance etc, but in this instance the PMO would move to a more subjective role? You might consider some form of ‘ring-fencing’ of resources to reduce the risk of any conflict of interest occurring and to ensure that the PMO continues to offer the right guidance and authority in all matters.



Posted on: March 18, 2016 09:58 AM | Permalink | Comments (3)

"All generalizations are dangerous, even this one."

- Alexandre Dumas