Category Archives: Program & Portfolio Management

All strategic initiatives are programs, requiring competency in program management. Leaders need to have a knowledge of the different discipline of portfolio management.

Strategic Initiative Steering Teams: A Sharp or Dull Blade?

Steering teams can be useful program management governance tools. When sharp, strategic initiative steering teams facilitate strategy by improving the characterization of the problem or opportunity, improve understanding of the solution, supply resources, and assist in championing. When dull, they waste time and dumb down the strategic results. This article provides useful perspective for the strategic initiative leader to consider the need for a steering team, and their relationship to members of the team. The article also links to useful “how to” advice for strategic initiatives. Continue reading

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The Job of the Program Manager is to…..

Strategic initiatives are programs led by very capable individuals. In a nutshell, the job of the program manager is to look outward and upward, conveying messages to stakeholders about the stakeholder receiving benefits. The program offers these benefits in exchange for the stakeholder’s commitment to the program. The article explores some of the nuances of this position, and provides helpful links to other content relevant to the competencies of program managers. Continue reading

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The Purpose of a Strategic Initiative is Closing a Performance Gap

Performance gaps are a powerful focusing and motivating force for a strategic initiative. This article illustrates the concept and discusses analytics that help to clarifying the gap. Knowing your performance gap facilitates strategic alignment. The article offers two useful questions and a practical hint for provoking a discussion on strategy. Continue reading

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HSBC’s Powerful Idea: Separate “Change the Business” from “Run the Business”

Strategic initiatives are intended to change the business, but have to compete with run the business imperatives for resources. HSBC has a simple powerful concept for portfolio prioritization: it’s either run the business or change the business. Greg Githens explains the concept, and covers three lessons for leaders of strategic initiatives: use this as a first cut, pay attention to the follow-the-money story, and think more deeply about the question, What is strategic alignment? http://wp.me/pZCkk-z6 Continue reading

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Why Your Organization Will Perform Better With Fewer Strategic Initiatives: Six Bits Evidence

Companies that have fewer strategic initiatives more likely to be at the top of their industry. Why? The discipline and focus of strategic choice! Too many projects and initiatives tend to cause fire fighting, distraction, frustration, etc. This article will provide you with examples and good talking points for maintaining focus on the “vital few” strategies rather than the trivial many. Continue reading

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A Template for Strategic Objectives (Benefits Propositions, Part 3): A.D.V.I.C.E. & Business Drivers

This article explains how to write a strategic objective with a verb that addresses a business driver. The ADVICE acronym is provided for the verbs. Several examples of strategic objectives are provides. Part of a series on benefits propositions for strategic initiatives. Continue reading

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Strategic Initiative Benefit Propositions (Part 1): Identifying the Duties of Internal Stakeholders

Strategic initiatives deliver benefits to important stakeholders. This article explains how to identify benefits sought by internal stakeholders (CFO, CIO, and Treasury Managers as examples). Greg Githens explains that you should look at the individual’s job duties with respect to organizational performance and success. Understanding their duties can help the strategic initiative leader craft messages that increase acceptance for the vision and for the strategy. Continue reading

Posted in Incremental Benefits Delivery, Program & Portfolio Management, Strategy Coaching and Facilitation, Useful Practices & Management Tools | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments