Portfolio Management and Improvement in Organizations

Welcome!  This is my 5th blog in a series I began in September. The first 4 posts were titled:

  1. An Invitation to Our Transformation
  2. Performance Measurement, Management, and Improvement
  3. Purpose Management and Improvement
  4. People Management and Improvement

If this is your first visit to my blog page, you should take a look at each of them (they’re pretty short) first so that you will have the proper “mind-set”, “mental-model” or, as my friend and colleague, Doug Brown, describes it, the proper “paradigm”, when reading this one.

This post on Portfolio Management and Improvement is a very special one because it includes excerpts and extracts from the new book I co-authored — Effective Portfolio Management Systems —  that was just released by the publisher CRC/Productivity Press (a division of Taylor & Francis).  The Front Cover is displayed at the top of this blog.

So, this topic is more than just another one of the 8 Ps of Organizational Performance Measurement, Management, and Improvement…it’s the primary focus of my 2nd book! 

A Portfolio, as defined on page 2 of the book, is “a collection of the organization’s projects, programs, sub-portfolios, and operations managed as a group to attain strategic objectives“. I have also worked with organizations that have a collection of the organization’s processes orproducts that have been prioritized and grouped together in the form of a portfolio.

Portfolio Management is the organizational function that combines the coordination and oversight of all the active projects and programs to maximize the value they add to the organization by prioritizing each of them, allocating limited resources to them, continually monitoring their progress, and, if necessary, re-prioritizing them based on those periodic progress results.  The ultimate goal here is to ensure an optimal match between or alignment of those projects and programs with the strategic purpose of the organization such that each one is providing the expected monetary value (EMV) or return on investment (ROI) to it.

Portfolio Improvement is the process of achieving measurable results by the projects and programs (processes and products, too) in each portfolio by collecting data on their respective outputs (or outcomes) and comparing its BUDGETED or promised results with the ACTUAL or delivered results.  When the ACTUAL results of this portfolio are better than, faster than,less costly than, and/or more profitable than (or a combination of these) the BUDGETED or expected results, that is the first step toward portfolio improvement or enhancement.  Then, when that type of performance becomes “normal” across multiple portfolios, that is organizational improvement or enhancement.

If this topic interests you or you are looking for a phased-approach for performing Portfolio Management, you may want to purchase a copy of Effective Portfolio Management Systems at one of these 3 URLs:




BTW:  My 1st book, published in 1990, was named The Project Workbench Whiz’s Sourcebook:  Everything You Wanted to Know in Version 3.0 which was co-authored with Mukunda Murthy.  Let’s hope another 25 years don’t pass before Book #3 (Ha!).

In my next blog, I’ll address Preparedness Management and Improvement which will include Business Continuity Planning, Succession Planning, Data Protection and Destruction Planning, and Cyber-Security Planning. In fact, I’ll be delivering a 2-hour, no-cost workshop covering these subjects on Wednesday, November 4, 2015 from 6:30 – 8:30 pm at the Maurice M. Pine (Fair Lawn) Public Library (Level D – Reference Room).  If you live/work in Northern NJ, please pre-register with us at info@ruggles2llc.com or call Vivi at (201)315-9737.  Hope to see you there and then!

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