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How to setup and lead a successfully PMO

Objective: To share how to shift focus on some of the human and psychological aspects of change, to balance the usual concentration on process that helped to setup, build & lead the APM PMO of the Year 2020 from the Government of Montserrat.

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PMOfficers all rights reserved 2021
Speaker
Martin A. Parlett
Head of Programme Management at
Government of Montserrat
PMO of the Year 2020, Board Director, Trustee, Obama
Presidential Campaign, CBI’s “35 Under 35”, Speaker,
Author, Canadian Rhodes Scholar
Webinars Series
The Magic of the PMO
How to Setup and Lead a
successfully PMO
(APM PMO of the Year Award)
Objective: To share how to shift focus on some of
the human and psychological aspects of change, to
balance the usual concentration on process that
helped to setup, build & lead the APM PMO of the
Year 2020 from the Government of Montserrat.
Moderator: Leonardo Reyes PMOfficers Founder
Date: Wednesday 19th May 2021
Barcelona (Spain) 20.00 Local Time
Sponsored by
BUILDING MONTSERRAT’S PMO
IN THE SHADOW OF A VOLCANO
SPEAKER BACKGROUND
• Head of PMO, Government of Montserrat
• Leader in Portfolio, Programme and Project Management
• Previously established Enterprise Portfolio Office and portfolio
framework for Sellafield Ltd, and established best practice on a
variety of high risk nuclear projects and programmes.
• Barack Obama Presidential Campaign 2008 – strategy and
communications
• Author, academic and speaker
• Confederation of British Industry – 35 Business Leaders under 35
• MA (Oxon), MA (UBC), Canadian Rhodes Scholar, MSP, MoP,
P30
“Despite these uniquely challenging times,
where both funding and project delivery are
under intense pressure, Montserrat’s PMO
has achieved rapid success and
international respect. It’s a new and small
unit that punches above its weight, offering
to PMOs around the globe important lessons
in innovation, implementation and
transformation; as well as how to focus on
the human and psychological impacts of
change.”
The judges further described the office as “a
perfect example of a well-functioning PMO
and the way that Government of Montserrat
has overcome its challenges is powerful.”
• The emerald heart of the Caribbean
• 1 of 14 British Overseas Territories
• 39 square miles
• Population c5000
• Facing transformational challenges of an almost
inordinate scale.
OUR PLACE IN THE WORLD
1989 – HURRICANE HUGO
• Destroyed entire villages
• 98% of buildings impacted
• Electrical grid, hospital etc. destroyed
• Capital’s sea port washed away
• 2500 homeless, mass displacement

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How to setup and lead a successfully PMO

  • 1. 1 PMOfficers all rights reserved 2021 Speaker Martin A. Parlett Head of Programme Management at Government of Montserrat PMO of the Year 2020, Board Director, Trustee, Obama Presidential Campaign, CBI’s “35 Under 35”, Speaker, Author, Canadian Rhodes Scholar Webinars Series The Magic of the PMO How to Setup and Lead a successfully PMO (APM PMO of the Year Award) Objective: To share how to shift focus on some of the human and psychological aspects of change, to balance the usual concentration on process that helped to setup, build & lead the APM PMO of the Year 2020 from the Government of Montserrat. Moderator: Leonardo Reyes PMOfficers Founder Date: Wednesday 19th May 2021 Barcelona (Spain) 20.00 Local Time Sponsored by
  • 2. BUILDING MONTSERRAT’S PMO IN THE SHADOW OF A VOLCANO
  • 3. SPEAKER BACKGROUND • Head of PMO, Government of Montserrat • Leader in Portfolio, Programme and Project Management • Previously established Enterprise Portfolio Office and portfolio framework for Sellafield Ltd, and established best practice on a variety of high risk nuclear projects and programmes. • Barack Obama Presidential Campaign 2008 – strategy and communications • Author, academic and speaker • Confederation of British Industry – 35 Business Leaders under 35 • MA (Oxon), MA (UBC), Canadian Rhodes Scholar, MSP, MoP, P30
  • 4. “Despite these uniquely challenging times, where both funding and project delivery are under intense pressure, Montserrat’s PMO has achieved rapid success and international respect. It’s a new and small unit that punches above its weight, offering to PMOs around the globe important lessons in innovation, implementation and transformation; as well as how to focus on the human and psychological impacts of change.” The judges further described the office as “a perfect example of a well-functioning PMO and the way that Government of Montserrat has overcome its challenges is powerful.”
  • 5. • The emerald heart of the Caribbean • 1 of 14 British Overseas Territories • 39 square miles • Population c5000 • Facing transformational challenges of an almost inordinate scale. OUR PLACE IN THE WORLD
  • 6. 1989 – HURRICANE HUGO • Destroyed entire villages • 98% of buildings impacted • Electrical grid, hospital etc. destroyed • Capital’s sea port washed away • 2500 homeless, mass displacement
  • 9. An Unparalleled Portfolio of Change CIPREG Programme (DFID) EU UK CIF • New National Hospital • Airport Rehabilitation • Subsea Fibre Optic • MSS School Development • A-01 Road Replacement • Social Housing Phase 2 • Renewable Energy – 750kw Solar and Wind • Tourism Redevelopment • New Port Project (partial funding) • RESEMBID Programme • COVID19 • New Port Project (partial funding) Governance Reform and Institutional Development (GRID) $200m of infrastructure and enabling transformational programmes/projects over 3-5 years
  • 10. OUR CHALLENGE – FAMILIAR? • PM… What? • Historical failure to deliver, lack of sponsorship • Collapse of Previous PMO attempts • Fear of the outsider • Quick Wins whilst developing deep relationships • Navigating embedded resistance to change and trauma • Ambition versus Capability • Highly politicized stakeholder landscape • The Rumour Mill • New Government transitions • Uneven requirements across Ministries and Departments
  • 11. CHALLENGE IN FOCUS - 1 “Late to the Party” or “New Kid on the Block” • PMO not usually part of an organization’s original eco-system • Often awkward straddling of departments/functions • Budget, what budget? • Two potential responses 1) adapt and integrate or 2) reject/resist • Leads to the need to show consistent PMO value, alignment, organizational “friendship”, whilst driving change and improvement
  • 12. CHALLENGE IN FOCUS - 2 Strategic (In)Consistency – Finding an Identity • PMOs can describe or imply a multitude of functions and roles – and defining your services is important but…. • PMOs should also be flexible to the need of the context, maturity, character, modality of projects and programmes it supports. • PMOs can control, support, assure, mentor, lead, augment, report, analyse, advise, escalate, enforce, oversee…etc…. • Must remain true, consistent, but pragmatic – sometimes a rock, sometimes a willow • PMOs therefore require skills linked to adaptability, EQ and tactical deftness, as much as technical know-how.
  • 13. CHALLENGE IN FOCUS - 3 Short and Long-termism: Both important • PMOs must operate in a temporal paradox – with eyes on the near and long term • New and existing PMOs must demonstrate early and regular wins – part of maintaining buy-in, organizational relevance and demonstrating value. • But PMOs must also keep an eye to longer term impact and considerations of the overall portfolio – benefits, strategic ends of transformation, capability building, legacy • To focus on only one of these paths is dangerous – leading to a PMO being viewed as too transactional or overly academic • Blueprint the PMO – phases, building blocks • Team needs to be fruit pickers and seed planters
  • 14. CHALLENGE IN FOCUS - 4 Turning Projects into Relatable Human Stories • PMOs can sometimes be accused of being process-driven, theoretical, driven by tools and templates – what does all of this mean to me? • A PMO can also be a powerful advocate for the human impact of project management • Gain stakeholder buy-in, media interest and sponsorship for your projects through turning your schedules, milestones, benefits, outcomes etc, into stories of real impact and human consequence. • This becomes an important lens for stakeholder engagement, benefits realization, risk management – and turns attention towards end-users and social impact • Adapt your language to suit – maintain integrity but keep your vocab relatable, human
  • 15. OUR APPROACH • Delivery support and Capability Development • An Honest Broker, and a Loyal Advocate • Communicate, Communicate, Communicate • Build on what exists for easier adoption – no big bangs • Respect history, experiences and disappointments • Demonstrate integrity and motive • Simple and Pragmatic over Theory and Process • Strategic (In)consistency - support, deliver, oversee • Governance as Vehicle for Progress, not Control • Turn Projects into Human Stories
  • 16. SUBSEA FIBRE OPTIC PROJECT £5m • Restoring Montserrat’s lost connection • Entirely new subsea and terrestrial infrastructure • Secured final investment from national Steering Committee • Procurement of design, installation, operations • Despite COVID19 – Complete ahead of schedule, on budget
  • 17. SUBSEA FIBRE OPTIC PROJECT £5m NEW NATIONAL HOSPITAL PROJECT (£15M) PMO “broke through quarter century of debate”
  • 18. SUBSEA FIBRE OPTIC PROJECT £5m PMO “broke through quarter century of debate” NEW NATIONAL HOSPITAL PROJECT (£15M) • Functional requirements agreed between all parties • Preliminary design tendered for, awarded and now complete • GoM working through the 3 design options, with the preferred design expected to be confirmed in June. • Next step is to progress ASAP to Detailed Design and then construction. • Decanting strategy and pandemic preparedness are key considerations. • Fit for purpose, 21st century, future proofed for expansion.
  • 19. AIRPORT RESURFACING & CONTROL TOWER (£4M) Keeping the Planes Flying
  • 20. AIRPORT RESURFACING & CONTROL TOWER (£4M) • Key strategic risk – airport closure if runway not addressed • Secured emergency funding from CIPREG Programme • Procurement of airport design and oversight specialist to augment team • Completion of preliminary and detailed design. • Construction completed April 2021 • Proactive engagement of regulators and high-level stakeholders • Ensuring contingency plans for emergency access / medevac • Line marking and grooving scheduled in coming weeks.
  • 21. AIRPORT CONTROL TOWER • Current tower facility degraded and not in line with regulations. New facility will be the tallest building in Montserrat. • Project for new tower was unfunded, PMO supported business case for inclusion within CIPREG Programme. • Cab secured and placed on site, and at risk. • Tower design completed • Procurement for construction and commissioning awarded. • Contractor mobilized. • Planned completion Summer 2021
  • 22. PORT DEVELOPMENT PROJECT (£21.4M) The first step to a new Capital
  • 23. PORT DEVELOPMENT PROJECT (£21.4M) • A new 130m berthing facility aimed at improving access and conditions for cargo and cruise, minimizing downtime • PMO has played a critical role in progressing through conceptual and preliminary design, as well as procurement for construction (underway). • Trailblazer project for risk, stakeholder management and governance. • PMO intervention and pause when design appeared undeliverable; optioneering undertaken; new solution approved through Cabinet and governance.
  • 26. • Island’s only secondary school – some temporary buildings, some degraded • GOM successfully lobbied ministerial level for inclusion within CIPREG envelope • Completed some initial site safety improvements • Refurbishment for Pupil Support Unit • New staff facility created • Designs for new library and classrooms completed • Main staffroom refurb almost complete • Project underway to restore Blocks L and M which will restore significant teaching capacity space – classrooms and labs. Procurement is live. MONTSERRAT SECONDARY SCHOOL REFURB
  • 27. The first step to a new Capital OTHER PROJECTS & ROLES • Renewable Energy – Solar and Wind • Governance Reform Programme • Tourism Development • Social Housing Phase 2 • Main Road Project and Asphalt Capability • Taskforces for COVID19 Response, Energy, Fibre.
  • 28. The first step to a new Capital BUILDING SUSTAINABLE CAPABILITY
  • 29. The first step to a new Capital BUILDING SUSTAINABLE CAPABILITY • On arrival, no standards for portfolio, programme or project management. • The frameworks and language for transformational not understood. • Limited perception of change management as a “professional pathway” • Noting status as British OT, but proximate to the US, we have adopted a blended approach to international standards and qualifications – APM, Axelos, AIPMO and PMI. • Montserrat has formed an exciting new partnership with the Southern Caribbean Chapter of the PMI, providing a much needed regional professional network and support community. • New handbook development with simple templates, exemplars, supported by context-based training modules. Champion Challenger model adopted. • Offering apprenticeships, secondments, internal rotations and internal coaching. • Virtual network of change management professionals across Government departments
  • 30. The first step to a new Capital ENGAGING THE PUBLIC • From Day 1 – Strategy of maximal transparency • Use of internet and radio as primary communication vehicles • Proactive, uplifting messaging and countering misinformation on project status/trajectory • Public consultations
  • 34. • Develop portfolio management to support strategic planning and prioritization • Continue to build confidence in Montserrat’s ability to deliver, whilst attracting new opportunities and investment • Drive focus on benefits maximization from realized projects • Deepen and renew PMO’s relationships, and strengthen partnerships • Improve the professional pathway for PPPM in Montserrat, and create a regional beacon for demonstrable excellence • Celebrate success and foster project learning environment • “Project Story” – Emphasise the human impact to our development narrative • Continue to share our PMO journey Looking Ahead
  • 35. We are proud to continue to share the story of one PMO’s role in delivering big transformational change on a very small Caribbean island. Thank You
  • 36. 1 PMOfficers all rights reserved 2021 https://community.pmofficers.org/ https://digital.pmoacademy.org
  • 37. 2 PMOfficers all rights reserved 2021 Webinars Series The Magic of the PMO Social Media Networks Webinars Series The Magic of the PMO Speaker Martin A. Parlett Head of Programme Management at Government of Montserrat PMO of the Year 2020, Board Director, Trustee, Obama Presidential Campaign, CBI’s “35 Under 35”, Speaker, Author, Canadian Rhodes Scholar https://www.linkedin.com/in/martin-parlett/