Dogma vs Pragmatism: fit-for-purpose Project Management methodologies

Written by Richard Greenall | 3P Practice Lead | richard.g@pmsolutionsaustralia.com.au
19 March 2019

There is a lot of discussion currently about the right level of project management standards for the  new ‘gig-economy’, where large enterprises need to respond and compete with the direct challenges presented by innovative start-ups.

“Best practice” in day’s past, was for most organisations to establish a EPMO, create a library of project delivery standards and templates, and push these throughout the enterprise.  It was a constant battle, usually disliked by project teams and senior business sponsors, and was to often the un-doing (and ultimate demise) of many EPMO‘s, in my professional experience.

This approach reminds me of the “bad-old-days” when enterprise desktops were locked-down with an SOE (standard operating environment), to the point where end-users found them frustrating and a barrier to their personal productivity and innovation.  Luckily the technologies have caught up and SOE controls have been significantly relaxed, with a growing number of enterprises even allowing “Apple Macs” on the premises!  But did the chance of a dreaded “blue-screen of death” and improved ICT asset management, justify the expense, frustration, and lost productivity with the SOE concept?

With project delivery enterprises, they must implement a smarter, tailored approach to supporting project delivery quality and success.  It must include actively supporting individual ways-of-working from project teams, and accept some risk and failure along the way, to harvest the learnings that brings with it, with the ultimate goal to generate a culture of growing team commitment to performance improvement, in whatever shape that is, as project and enterprise success will naturally follow.  That is the new horizon forEPMO delivery assurance.  No methodology “dogma” can deliver this.