How to get the most out of your PMO Training!

I recently read a chapter of Things Your PMO is Doing Wrong by Michael Hatfield, specifically the chapter entitled Training and Certification. As part of a training company, this naturally gave me a lot to consider about how our customers can get the most out of their training.

Initially, I would like to take a look at the statement Hatfield makes regarding hiring ‘credentialed project managers’, which I believe to be one of the most relevant parts of the chapter.

They may have the experience and education necessary to obtain the credential and may even have the knowledge and abilities to answer exam questions correctly. But a credential does not mean that the individual will practice project management under the ethical code they agreed to uphold or that they will practice according to the policies, procedures or cultural nuances of your organisation.

There are several points raised here that should be considered when looking to invest in training – both for yourself, or for other members of your team.

Why am I investing in this training?

The first thing to consider is, why am I investing in this training? 

If you’re looking to apply what you have learned in your training into your role and your organisation, then you’re probably looking at training for the right reasons. If you’re looking to pass an exam, get certified status, and leave your training knowledge in the classroom, you might want to reconsider.

Here at PMO Learning, we pride ourselves on not simply providing the theory to complete a training course, or pass a certification, but rather allow you to learn the theory alongside the information required to understand what needs to be implemented within an organisation. For example, our Benefits Management course doesn’t simply explain what benefits management is, but rather provides an explanation of the associated tools, techniques and deliverables, as well as what needs to be implemented within an organisation, what behaviours need to be adjusted, as well as the necessary processes and procedures.

What training does our organisation need?

Hatfield’s reference to the ‘policies, procedures or cultural nuances of your organisation’ also gives us another factor to consider when looking to invest in training, what training does our organisation need?

A key competency of a PMO, as outlined in the PMO Competency Framework states that a key indicator of competence in the context of a Centre of Excellence, is the abillity to,

Provide instruction, education and training on the application of delivery method processes, procedures and templates.

This could come in varying forms – either by training your team yourself, or by using a training company.

It may be appealing to collect certifications – but does this align with the needs of the business? The PMO exists to address the needs of an organisation, ensuring it is balanced against Business As Usual to ensure success against their overall business strategy. Whilst it may be appealing to collect certifications, if the qualifications can’t assist with the aims of the PMO, it might be worth reconsidering what training you want to undertake.

At PMO Learning, we want to complete the right training for you and your organisation, and if you need some advice on which course is right for you, why not get in touch?

Another element to consider when looking to ensure you can apply what you’ve learned to your organisation is what training style is right for us?

When using external training materials that are not specified to your organisation, it becomes more difficult to directly apply the content, and there may be a concern that the knowledge is simply being memorised to pass an exam and will not be transferred back to the team to really retain the benefits of the training. It is worth considering if your team would benefit from in-house training – delegates are able to partake in exercises that are set up to address particular challenges unique to your organisation, using your methodology, processes, and terminology.

As Hatfield states,

simply being trained in something does not compel us to do that thing.

To get the most out of your training, it is insufficient to simply study the content and pass an exam – as delegates we need to be motivated to apply what we have learned from our training to our individual role, our team, or even to the wider organisation – by knowing the ways in which you can apply the content to your day-to-day, your team can get the most out of their training.

If you’re looking for more information about our in-house courses, or are wondering if public courses or in-house courses are better for you, we have a recent blog post that can help!

We love providing you with fantastic training that can help you achieve your business or personal career needs – if you have a specific goal, are looking to train your team, or are unsure which training is right for you, get in touch and we can help!

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