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12th Jul 2022
Here we chat to Fiona MacTavish MAIPM CPPP, Project Management Office (PMO) Manager for The Royal Australasian College of Physicians. She tells us about her career and passions, running a PMO, and how the AIPM (and Elon Musk!) have been fundamental.
There are many which I could point to, but perhaps the two I’ve enjoyed most are:
It has and always will be about communication and understanding your stakeholders and their needs. PMOs need to, and be seen to, create value for their organisations and senior leadership team. It’s no longer about just reporting up on project information as this is seen largely as just an administrative burden. Ideally information on projects should be available in a timely way, that’s as close to real time as possible, especially on risks and issues to manage those aspects and mitigate or deal with hurdles which arise.
PMOs need to, and be seen to, create value for their organisations and senior leadership team.
Elon Musk. Not directly though! I’m always keen to hear his views on innovation and challenging the current way ‘work’ is done. He looks for ways to completely rethink the value offered by his products and services to his stakeholders and users, as opposed to traditional marketing taught at business schools. He has a way of communicating and influencing a wide range of people from the grassroots level up to the highest areas of influence worldwide. He uses social media to directly connect to millions of people through Twitter, which he uses constantly to make that connection appear personal. To me that’s the real power of social media and we’ll see how that goes now he has purchased Twitter!
[Elon Musk] looks for ways to completely rethink the value offered by his products and services to his stakeholders and users, as opposed to traditional marketing taught at business schools.
I wanted to get some industry recognition for my skills and experience. Project management certification is a way of communicating so people have a common understanding of what you’ve achieved as part of your career. I believe project management goes beyond a set of skills and provides a structured way of thinking about solving problems, and how organisations can deliver the best outcomes and value for stakeholders and staff.
I’m passionate about portfolio management, especially breaking down strategy into programs, projects, and key business as usual initiatives to make strategy a reality. I’m also a keen mentor of the next generation of project managers. As part of my role on the NSW Chapter, I spend time working out how we support our future project leaders to drive their careers and provide trusted advice to them in the increasingly complex and ambiguous environment that they will run projects and programs in.
With a new strategy it’s an exciting time. Chapters have a lot of scope to implement events and other initiatives to build strong relationships locally with members, industry, and university partners.
I went to an excellent session on Learn the Recipe for PPM Implementation Success run by the AIPM PMO Community of Practice. One of the best takeaways from this was understanding what the most achievable PPM (project and portfolio management) tool benefits are (versus what the vendors say these tools do). It’s available on the AIPM OnDemand platform for members who may have missed it.
I think there are a couple of key points from my point of view. Firstly, communication and being able to find common ground with people is key to building trust, especially being able to understand what stakeholders need to understand and do to make a project successful. The next is being able to manage the big picture as well as the details in a project. You need to know what outcomes you’re moving towards and how to get people to work together to achieve them while balancing risk and managing the inevitable sideways direction of projects during delivery.
Join now to unlock the benefits of Australia’s leading body for project professionals.
In this article, Jeff Rose, FAIPM reflects on his career as he celebrates his 20th anniversary as a fellow of the AIPM.
With an abundance of project management certifications to choose from, you might be wondering, “Which project management certification is the best in Australia?”
We sat down with 6 of today’s leading female project management professionals to learn more about their perspectives in project management.