Lessons learned is not a new
concept and has provided many benefits for organisations over the years.
There are numerous reasons why so often attempts at lessons learned end
in failure – is one of these that it suffers from an image problem. Is
it now time to rebrand and improve the lessons learned experience?
My journey into defence isn’t
what you would call typical, nor was it a straightforward and planned
journey. If a year ago you had told me I would be project manager within
a Portfolio Management Office (PMO) helping to develop processes,
methodologies and analysis that would guide information system services
technology from idea to reality, while also being part of a team of
three to research, design and build a comprehensive and agile knowledge
management system for thousands to use, I would have been surprised to
say the least.
Weve all been involved in lessons
learned workshops its an intrinsic and very important part of the world
of project management. But how many of these sessions really get under
the surface of the project? They can often be box ticking exercises that
capture the obvious and rarely get translated into organisational
Setting up a PMO can range from a
simple execution of an out of the box solution through to an enabler
for transformational change. The former is often a bolt on capability
which is often perceived as a data hungry bureaucratic overhead that
significantly underplays the business benefits that may be realised from
a PMO. Using the PMO as an enabler for transformation change is a more
enlightened solution, but it brings with it a range of challenges.