As we get closer to the Arizona PMO Forum next week on October 20th, get to know one of our panelists David Dietz!
1. What was your professional journey to becoming a PMO leader?Two key steps guiding my path to the program office was serving as a junior military naval officer, where I was the counter to a shipyard’s program manager coordinating a 5 month ship overhaul. I learned the importance of a complete, integrated master schedule, scope, cost and risk management and project dependencies. My 2nd step was managing a portfolio of programs as a Program Manager for Lockheed Martin. I received formal training in earned value, program and subcontract management, and was introduced to many different technologies.
2. What was the biggest challenge you faced as a PMO leader in your career? How did you overcome that challenge?The biggest challenge I faced was asked to come into a problem “red program” to resolve performance issues for a $800M aircraft program 6 months after kick-off. I led activities to concurrently redefine work and oversight for $295M of subcontracted sensor content for 8 sensor subcontractors and ten 2nd tier subcontractors. I had to account for strength of the team I inherited, fill in holes, develop an overhaul plan and build effective relationships with senior management internally and externally.
3. What key competencies and/or skills make a great PMO leader?Key competencies include pragmatic leadership, organizational and effective communication skills with a collaborative approach to problem solving, but willing to make tough decisions if required. A great leader instills a shared vision, balances process with needs of the staff, is cool under pressure, acts with integrity and leverages their broad experience.
4. What organizational and/or cultural characteristics allow PMOs to succeed and thrive?
Thriving PMOs have wide spread senior management advocacy and a valued add tool and tailorable process set aligned to the right level of detail to manage programs through their risks. The organization and culture must learn to tap into world resources leveraging their available talent and leaders must be comfortable with remote staff.
5. How do you exhibit and measure the value the PMO brings to your organization?
The PMO is charged with driving superior program performance on development programs meeting Key Performance Indicators while keeping stakeholders informed of project health, serving as a vehicle to guide and develop program managers and their teams, and establish and encourage best practices.
Have you registered for the Arizona PMO Forum? If not, there is still time!