Sarah coleman helping your project sponsor step up to the challenge
Helping your sponsor step up
to the challenge
11 June 2013
“….. so your
Project Sponsor is
Noah's Ark (1846) by Edward Hicks
That almost meant
something to me
a communication collision …..
… enterprise architecture …
relational databases …firewall
divisions… intra regional pops
… real-time … US host systems
… MPLS based network ….
WAN technologies … ADSL ….
SNMP out of band
a view from the other side (1)…..
“ ….. exactly how are we supposed to get our sponsor motivated and
maintain their interest? We thought this should be a necessary part of
“ ….. our sponsor was really involved at the beginning,
but now seems to have a completely different set of priorities.
It is a continuous battle to get time in her diary.”
“ ….. they’ve given me a sponsor who has no
authority and very little interest in responsibility”
“ ….. the sponsor from hell – a micro manager …”
“Ours is a long-term project and we’ve had changes of project
sponsors on average every six months. Each time, we have to
start all over again and build the relationship from scratch. There
must be an easier way to deal with changing sponsors, or even to
stop changing sponsors.“
project sponsorship: a team sport …..
Source: Peter Holmberg. Alinghi Team training in Dubai 2007.
building the individual & organizational capability
What are 3 key ways in which a
project manager can contract successfully
with a project sponsor?
“….. different projects require different types and degrees
of sponsorship. This isn’t necessarily recognised by the
“I think sponsorship is about balancing the needs of the organization
against the needs of the project.
If you get that right then you are executing the role effectively.
However, we don’t review what’s „appropriate‟ when defining a
sponsor’s role and we suffer accordingly.”
a view from the other side (2)…..
“What is „success‟ for the Project Sponsor role? If it all goes *!*s up
then we know they‟ve failed!”
• How does your organization develop and support its own
project sponsorship capability?
• What kind of projects within your organization are
provided with project sponsors?
• Does one size of project sponsorship fit all project types
within your organization,?
• How does your organization measure the success of the
role, and of the individual within the role?