Similarly, there is an issue in the bottom-up communication.
The project teams will be focused on the most urgent tasks, but it becomes difficult for the individual to communicate this on a corporate level. The data doesn’t actually show where people are spending their time or why.
Good portfolio management bridges the gap between strategy and implementation.
When designing a solution that can connect strategy to work it’s all about figuring out what data we need and how to collect it. This should be automated. The days of PMOs controlling and following up on unnecessary details in every project are in the past.
The PMO no longer pushes methods onto the organization but looks one step ahead and clears the road. The PMO is, essentially, a support for the organization. It shouldn’t slow people down by demanding data and specific ways of working, but clear roadblocks and ensure that an organization can produce good work while still leveraging its project selection and execution successfully.
Objectives and Key Results for the Hybrid Organization
Becoming aware of hybrid portfolio management brings the challenge of combining and connecting different methodologies inside the same strategy. An agile team will struggle to align their workflow with a waterfall or stage-gate team, yet they still work within the same organization, or maybe even within the same portfolio. The solution is to use OKRs to disseminate a coherent, straightforward goal that people can orient themselves towards.
The main philosophy allows any person or team to connect directly into the strategy and be part of executing and delivering on those goals. It’s about tracking progress and encouraging engagement throughout the organization.
Objectives are often connected to your vision or your mission, something like achieving amazing revenue growth. The objectives are limited and easily summed up; they should be easy to communicate and something everyone in the organization can be proud of achieving. From the objective one or two key results are formed.
The key results show when the objective has been achieved; it must be measurable, a number, a percentage, or a monetary value. The baseline is noted so that we have something to compare the target to. It should be easily tracked in a transparent way.
An owner is assigned to each key result and a tracking frequency is defined.
So, if the objective is to achieve amazing revenue growth, then key results could be, “close 1 mio. in new deals” or “Win 40 new customers in APAC”.
We might note that we currently have 5 customers in APAC and wish to increase this, with a weekly tracking frequency until the end of the parent-objective.
The key results are then translated into your initiatives, that is the projects that are run in the departments or teams. Here there is a person driving the initiative, e.g., a project manager who has full ownership of creating the schedules as well as progress tracking and status indicators. These initiatives are then linked back to the key results.