Are your project managers nimble enough to respond to disruptions in your business model? Do they know your model and know how to align their project with the model? What’s at stake if they do not know it or use it? At GMBC, we think there is potential for missed opportunities and projects that don’t realize their benefits when the PM doesn’t know or can’t interpret your model.
An organization’s business model describes how it is financed, what products or services it supplies to its customers and how it delivers value.
Projects introduce change to the organization. PMs need to understand the business model and be able to link it to the objectives of their projects. They should know how their project impacts various aspects of the business model.
Here are tips for helping your PMs connect their projects with your business model.
Involve the PM in the Business Case.
A project needs a business reason to exist. Engage PMs either during or immediately after the case is generated. That way, they know whether they are responsible for developing a new product or service, improving existing ones, avoiding or lowering cost, or modifying the way the organization does business. When the project is meant to change the business model itself, the PM needs to know what that business is and how it is going to change.
Train PMs to Link Projects to Models.
With this skill, PMs can calibrate execution strategies, key performance indicators and benefits realization according to the business model. They should be among the first to recognize that something about the project may have an unintended consequence on some aspect of that model. If your business is executing projects for others, your PMs should know the business model of your customers. It’s fundamental to customer satisfaction.
Support PMs as They Use the Model.
It’s a great way for PMs to communicate with upper management. Listen to them in the context of the model. They can explain how project delays may impact the execution of that model. For example, if their project is bringing on a new revenue stream, changing the supply chain, striving to comply with a new regulation, or achievement of a certification (like ISO9000), it usually gets management’s attention when project issues correlate to staying in business.