Management of Portfolios
I deliver MoP (Management of Portfolios) foundation and practitioner exams. In a course with me you learn about portfolio management by talking, drawing and teaching in small groups. You may even be more inspired to get better control over your projects and programmes.
I cover why to do better portfolio management, how to get started, share my contacts and network of people who have already started, and offer follow-up coaching to increase chances of success.
Getting projects done
At the heart of any portfolio management approach is the need to identify the right programmes and projects to deliver an organization’s strategy, and ensure that targeted benefits are achieved. MoP describes the principles and best-practices that will enable public and private sector organizations of all sizes to either introduce or re-energize portfolio management approaches.
Benefits for Organizations:
- Remove redundant, duplicate and poorly performing programmes and projects.
- Improve coordination of existing functions and processes.
- Ensure constrained resources are allocated to optimize strategic impact, coordinate delivery and maintain strategic alignment.
- Invest in programmes and projects in the context of the current environmental conditions and better coordinate investment in programmes and projects, improve the management of risk and encourage collaborative working.
- Enhance transparency, accountability and corporate governance.
A list of tools to help with project portfolio management can be found here:
“Among the most common complaints of PPM tools are that a great deal of the functionality goes unused and that the application is too hard to use.”
Many tools prioritize projects based on “strategic alignment.” However, in most organizations, most projects don’t get proposed because they are aligned with strategy; instead, projects get proposed because someone thinks they will produce results that are needed and valuable to the organization. If a strategically aligned project doesn’t produce useful outcomes, it is not a good use of scarce resources. It may be easy for vendors to allow users to assign subjective alignment scores to projects, but such scores have little if anything to do with project value.
“PPM tasks can be accomplished with very simple tools, starting with a paper form, leading to Excel spreadsheets, graduating to enterprise databases, and culminating with purpose-built PPM software. You can’t do PPM without systems, it’s just a question of which systems fit your organization’s level of ambition and maturity.”
— Johnathan Feldman
Some notes and references from that site:
- An early version of this paper was published under the title “Tools for Prioritizing Projects and Selecting Project Portfolios” in the Proceedings of the First Annual Power Delivery Asset Management Workshop, New York, June 3-5, 2003.
- Francois Retief, “Modern Project Portfolio Management Software, ” Management Planning Systems, 2005. Retief, in turn, cites Morendil, “Incipient(Thoughts)”, Laurent Bossavit’s web log, posted by Morendil at July 24, 2003.
- Lewis Cardin, “SaaS-Based Tools Lower Barriers to PPM Success,” Forrester, April 2008.
- Anirban Dutta, “A Guide to Successful PPM Implementation,” IBM, January 2006.
- Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, “Project Portfolio Management,” March 2008.
- Johnathan Feldman, “PPM Gets Your Projects In Line,” Information Week, March 6, 2010.
- Dan Ariely, “Column: What Was the Question?” Harvard Business Review, September 2011.
The case against PPM
The ability to deliver successful change is increasingly becoming a real determinant of competitive advantage. Yet, delivering successful change is one of the toughest challenges that companies face, especially complex, high-stakes, breakthrough change. Studies show that, depending on complexity, 50-75% of major change efforts fail to realize intended results.
What if you could minimize that risk of failure, powerfully flipping the odds in favor of success?