As a PMO, what does a Project Manager expect from me?

October 16th, 2016  by Reyana Sow

"Being a PMO (Project Management Officer) has been part of my job for many years now. Experience has taught me that it is not enough to deploy some soft skills, you really have to show some Top Qualities to your client."

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Here are some of them!
1. Be rigorous
Do not allow any little mistakes to slip into your report. The report has to be factual and complete. You do not have the info before the meeting? Add “investigation ongoing” and explain when arriving at this topic. If not applicable, put NA. Do not leave any blank spaces. Provide figures and keep your planning up to date. Your action plan should be updated. Prepare all your presentations so that they flow. Have a copybook with you so you can take notes.
2. Foresee, predict and get the information
As a PMO you have to foresee all types of questions and actions. The best course is to get the information before your Project Manager asks for it. He/she will rely on you and that’s your job. To do this you may have to ask either a lot of questions directly to your team or gather information during project meetings. It is a big mistake to “just assume”. Be sure of what you are talking about. A delay! Why? How? Who? What are the main impacts? Think of solutions and propose if needed. You must be two steps ahead and also have a helicopter view.
3. Become essential
Think of everything in detail like his/her assistant. A meeting to participate in, a presentation to prepare, a deliverable to provide soon… you must prepare and provide elements of it before he/she even thinks about it. For example, you’ve noticed that a project meeting is missing from the calendar! Alert your project manager and plan corrections quickly if needed. There is a Steering Committee coming up! Take 5 days to start preparing the presentation and the deliverables before he/she mentions it. Got it? OK! Go!
4. Be the link with the operational part of the team
You need to be the link between the project members and your project manager. You’ll have to get the feeling of the ground (lots of stress due to the different constraints, the planning stretches, etc.) and the top management. Identify your points of contact and meet them frequently. Brief your manager once a week or when it’s asked for. What do you think? Do you have more qualities you would like to share with us?
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