Building PMO Working Relationships

First 100 Days in a PMO: How to Build Relationships Across the Business

A new role in a project management office (PMO) means it’s time to learn about a new business and introduce yourself to new colleagues. In the first 100 days in a PMO, how to build relationships across the business in the start of a great foundation.

No matter if your new PMO role is a promotion or you’re moving to a whole new business, you need to get your PMO relationships off on the right foot. Our recommendation to get your relationships correct from the very start is to get your communications right.

How do you do that effectively? We’re going to explore that here, looking at:

  • How communication can facilitate great relationships
  • Who you need to build relationships within your PMO
  • What you need to plan for when looking at your relationships in your PMO

Why is building relationships in the first 100 days of a PMO important?

How people view you in a professional context is important to you, and to the office you’re running. Going into your role with positive relationships will ensure you can work effectively across the business in the long run.

You need to communicate who you are and what your office will do across the whole business. One email blast across the whole organisation isn’t going to cut it, and you’re not likely to get time with every single person you want to talk to in your first 100 days.

Getting the communications right at the start of your PMO role will smooth the way for the future when you may need:

  • Extra support from the C-suite
  • To collaborate with your HR depart
  • Manage a project manager who moves to work in your PMO

Which PMO relationships do I need to work on in my first 100 days?

Plan your communications carefully when you start to establish your PMO relationships. Every business area and level of seniority will need to be treated a little differently.

The primary people you need to have your initial series of comms ready for are:

  • The C-suite so they can see how you will add value
  • Your PMO team, who need to understand how you work and how they’re performing
  • Project managers you monitor will need to know about progress and your project pipeline
  • The broader organisation that needs to be aware of the work you do and how it impacts them

By planning how you will communicate and what you will say, you will set the tone for relationships going forwards.

How do I build relationships from my PMO?

There are a few key factors that you need to take into consideration when planning and executing your communication plan from your new PMO.

The right tools

Having the right communication tools planned out is the first step to getting your comms right. A direct, personalised email to the C-suite will be appreciated, whereas a video post on the company intranet will reach the wider business.

The right frequency

Set your rhythm for communication from the start to strengthen your relationships. Figure out how often you will communicate your messages, whether it’s a weekly email blast to your PMs or a monthly business-wide update. Having a reliable pattern will build a trusting relationship.

The right message

After you figure how the how and when, you need to really understand the message you want to communicate and the tone. Keep it relevant – you don’t need to tell everyone in the company how to calculate a project budget, but your PMO team will want actionable insights.

The take-home

To start your first 100 days in a PMO, building relationships across the business is a good place to start. You will establish a strong message and start conversations with people early on.

You need the people around you to understand you, your role, and your ambitions. However, it won’t be the same message to everyone; work on crafting the right message for your different audiences.

Establishing communication patterns will show people you’re committed to talking with them and give people the confidence to engage in the work of your PMO.