The previous post (Allowing a person from the PMO organization to be associated with the Scrum team – Part 2) focused on a Scrum team being told that they could have a Project/Program Management Officer who would help out in their team. For many teams in the organization, there was a recent move to move them towards a Scrum based development methodology, and at the same time, there was a move to setup a PMO group within the company to provide more focus on metrics and the like, but there was no mandate that every team needs to use them. So when there was an offer for the Scrum team to use members of the team, the team was considering this and decided to take input from other teams about their experiences with the already existing Project Management organization. The first feedback that the team received from another organization was that having such a group and their goals really did not work with the way that the Scrum team works, and there would be clashes. More feedback we got about using members from the PMO team (not only from within the organization, but from other organizations) was:
– One of the assertions that was made was that the PM Officer will provide additional support by being able to analyze issues and situations, analyze the productivity and performance of the team and overall be in a position to provide motivation to the team. However, there was a serious challenge to this assertion, and this challenge came from the Scrum Master and the Product Owner. Both of them felt that they were in a better position to understand what the team is doing, what the challenges facing the team are, and if there is any motivation that can be done, either of them would be in a better position to provide the same. Further, the Scrum Master from another team made the statement that he did not believe that anybody is expected to be able to really provide motivation to individuals in a Scrum team; at the most, people could act as a coach and do mentoring of the team and its members, but not exactly act as a motivator.
And then of course, we actually heard from another team in the organization which flatly denied that the existing PM organization was in any way motivating; in fact, some of their reliance on metrics and a zeal for ensuring that metrics got collected from all teams, and comparing the metrics of one team against another was not at all motivating, and once in a while, lead to disagreements, with these disagreements not being the productive sort. So even though there could be cases where a specific individual could be a big support and provide help, the way that the PMO team worked was not exactly geared towards the Scrum teams.
Read more about bringing in a PM Officer to assist the team – Part 4