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Should the PMO Go Away? w/ Marty Bradley

Dave Prior Senior Consultant/CST-CRM Specialist
Reading: Should the PMO Go Away? w/ Marty Bradley

The Project Management Office (PMO) has traditionally been responsible for providing governance over projects, programs and portfolios. It’s job is to ensure that projects are managed according the standards set forth by the PMO, and it is responsible for reporting on progress to leadership. When Agile is introduced into an organization, along with new ways of tracking work, self-organizing teams and new ways of understanding priority, the value the PMO provides comes into question.

In a recent blog post, LeadingAgile SVP and Executive Consultant Marty Bradley addressed the question “Should the PMO Go Away?” In this episode of LeadingAgile’s SoundNotes, Marty and Dave dig deeper on this topic and explore what PMO’s (and PMO Leaders) need to do in order to remain relevant to an organization transitioning to Agile.

Show Notes

  • 00:08 Podcast Begins
  • 00:35 What does a LeadingAgile Executive Coach actually do
  • 01:40 When the Executives say “Stop saying Agile.”, it’s actually a good thing.
  • 3:05 Should the PMO go away? Who’s asking and why?
  • 07:12 Why do we need a PMO and governance if the teams are supposed to be self organizing?
  • 08:38 If we do not have trust, how can we have self-organization and Agility?
  • 09:39 All night deployments and the impact of not trusting the team
  • 10:43 When the people who “know better” create a system that fosters missed deadlines and failure, they create a very dysfunctional form of predictability
  • 12:15 How the PMO can maintain its’ relevancy in an organization transitioning to Agile.
  • 13:27 How do we maintain the necessary non-agile elements when we transition to Agile?
  • 14:55 How can we have more empathy for the members of the PMO and the massive personal and career change they are facing in maintaining the stability of a traditional approach while supporting the change to Agile?
  • 16:29 Changing the focus and the metrics used to track the work
  • 17:10 The impact on Development Managers
  • 18:12 Why would I want to eliminate the need for my own position (if we transition from waterfall to Agile)
  • 18:42 Coping with transition: “This is my job,…I got a family…What am I supposed to do?”
  • 19:55 Maintaining a balance between preserving the necessary domain knowledge and changing as fast as you can
  • 20:29 What PMO Leaders need to know before the Agile transition team shows up – “Not everything needs to be perfect Agile.”
  • 23:51 If I am in a PMO and I want to get up to speed and maintain my own relevancy, what do I need to learn?
  • 25:10 “I’d look at my company and figure out what is value in my company?” How do you define value?
  • 27:02 Finding your organization’s own definition of value
  • 27:46 Closeout

Contacting Marty


Contacting Dave


Related Links


If you have comments on the podcast, or have questions for the LeadingAgile coaches that you’d like to have addressed in a future episode of LeadingAgile’s SoundNotes, you can reach Dave at

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