>>THE ROI OF CPOs AND PMOs
Some CPOs are also in charge of the project management office (PMO).
Dave Glowacki runs the PMO at LexisNexis Risk Solutions, Boca Raton,
Florida, USA. While he doesn’t have the official CPO title, he performs many of
the same responsibilities, including helping senior executives tie strategy to the
“We looked at our PMO and said, ‘If there were four things we wanted everyone
we work with to take away from the PMO, what would those things be?’” he says.
The decided on the following:
n Partner. Team up with technical management on one side, and the product
management and business unit on the other. “This is opposed to a ‘throw it
over the wall’ kind of approach or even a subordinate type of relationship,”
Mr. Glowacki says.
n Focus. Provide clearly defined goals for the organization through controlling
scope creep, driving the priority setting, and choosing the number and type of
projects requested across the organization in alignment with its strategy.
n Urgency. Drive the organization and the various deliverables aggressively. For
LexisNexis, time to market is critical.
n Deliver. Follow through on what the PMO has committed to.
His team has taken to calling these strategic elements “PFUD.”
“PFUD is the essence of what we strive to achieve in the PMO. How we operate
and evolve is centered around these four descriptors,” Mr. Glowacki says.
“I’m not crazy about the term,” he adds, laughing, “but it’s definitely memorable.”
In fact, those who work for the PMO wear that credo on their sleeves—literally.
They have polo shirts with PFUD embroidered on the arm.
That helps drive home the point for the rest of the company.
“The message is clear,” Mr. Glowacki says. “This is what we’re about, and if we
don’t do these four things, then we’re not doing our job.”
ing with the owner of that business
to talk about it and you both decide,
‘We’ve got a good handle on it—there’s
no need to share that. And if it doesn’t
turn around in a week or two, then we’ll
share it,’” Mr. Glowacki says.
It’s all part of keeping things simple
at the top.
“A lot of things get vetted below,” he
explains, “and that’s how you want it.
You only want the critical stuff coming
up to the executive level.”
To truly be in tune with business
strategy and the executive mindset, Mr.
Glowacki cautions project professionals
not to look at process in a silo.
“I find that escalation occurs when
you look at problems individually and
you say, ‘We’re going to fix this by add-
ing a process.’ Then the next problem
comes up, and you fix that one by add-
ing a process,” he says.