Contact Us

Reflecting on The PMO Squad’s 10 Years in Business

career joe pusz leadership mentorship project management teams Mar 08, 2023

March 3, 2023 marked The PMO Squad’s 10th year in business. Seems like yesterday that I decided to leave a steady job and regular paycheck from a large corporation and dive headfirst into the world of entrepreneurship to become a business owner.  

Was it scary? Below is an excerpt from my email to The PMO Squad staff last week that captures the moment of that decision. 

“Today is an exciting day for The PMO Squad as we celebrate our 10-year anniversary.  A decade ago sitting in our home in Kennesaw, Georgia I told my wife I wanted to start a business supporting PMOs and PMO Leaders.  We had 4 young children and Elyssa was a stay-at-home mom.  Our only source of income was my salary and we decided to walk away from the stability to pursue a dream. Elyssa’s words back to me will never be forgotten, she told me, ‘You’ve been successful in everything you’ve ever done, I believe in you and just don’t fail.’” 

Gulp. The “you’ve been successful in everything you’ve ever done” part was encouraging. The “just don’t fail” part was sobering.  

Failure is a real possibility for any business just starting out. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that approximately 20% of small businesses fail within the first year. By the end of the second year, 30% will have failed; by year five’s end, about half; by the end of the decade, only 30% of businesses will remain — a 70% failure rate. 

I’m glad to say The PMO Squad has beat the odds.  I’ve learned a lot along the way and come to a much higher appreciation of those I work with. Below are a few reflections from my journey over the past decade. 

What I’ve Learned 

The following are a few of the insights I’ve gained over the past 10 years in business. 

  • Project Management is Different, and the Same, Everywhere - I’ve been able to work within many different industries and companies over the years, ranging from semiconductors, automotive, healthcare, hi-tech, and government to name just a few. What I’ve come to realize is that while each company or industry is different, they are also fundamentally the same. 
    For example, each company has its own goods or services, processes, and jargon. But, they all need to achieve the same goal, which is to create value for customers and shareholders. That’s where project management comes in. The project management framework of initiation, planning, execution, monitoring, and closure fits perfectly over any industry or company, regardless of the differences in how they operate or what they produce. 
  • Project Management can Provide a Positive or Negative Experience - When done well, project management can help transform a company from rags to riches. When done poorly, or not given the proper attention, project management can doom a company to failure. 
    Here’s an example of what I mean. A company that wanted to be sold reached out to The PMO Squad for help. The company wasn’t profitable, sales were low, employee morale was even lower, and they had the reputation of not being able to deliver, which resulted in low customer satisfaction. The company smartly recognized that if they were able to deliver projects better, many of their problems would go away.  
    That’s exactly what happened. The PMO Squad was able to assist in their project management journey and in delivering projects better. The result? Project delivery improved, along with customer satisfaction. A rise in employee morale and sales and profitability followed. The company was sold for an equitable price and continues to do well to this day. 
  • Project Management Must Grow as the Company Grows - Project management is the unseen glue that holds so many companies together. Experienced project managers run projects for the organization, or “everyday” project managers (the role formerly known as “accidental project managers”) run projects for their departments or divisions. But, as important as the discipline and rigor of project management is, seldom does it get the same attention and resources as operations, marketing, finance, or other core departments. 
    Project managers and PMOs need the same level of investment as other departments, and to grow as the organization grows. Then, when times get tough, they will be better able to deliver results that are hard to replace. 

What I’ve Come to Appreciate 

While I’ve learned a lot since 2013, I’ve come to appreciate a number of things even more. 

  • The Privilege of Being on a Team - We all know there’s no “I” in TEAM. But, the opposite of that is also true. If you don’t have a TEAM, all you have is “me, myself, and I,” and that’s what happens when you start out on your own. While this can cut down a lot of bureaucracy, it’s also a lonely place to be. There’s nobody to bounce ideas off of, challenge your assumptions, or provide different points of view. You can’t collaborate, commiserate, or celebrate with others, and you feel like you’re on a deserted island at times. 
    That’s why I appreciate the staff and partners of The PMO Squad so much. The company has grown to be able to hire and work with talented people. They allow us to provide a great, well-rounded experience for our clients, and it has been a rewarding exchange for what I gave up when I left the corporate world. 
  • Having an Impact on Multiple Organizations - We all want to make an impact with what we do for work. But, there’s a difference between helping an industry get better one company at a time, versus just one company getting better. When I worked in a corporate environment, the magnitude of my impact was restricted to the projects and people that were inside those four walls. 
    Now, running a global company that works across multiple clients has removed the restriction of those four walls. I’m very grateful for the positive impact that The PMO Squad has had on so many companies, associations, and volunteer affiliations.  
  • What I’ve Learned from Our Clients - This probably comes as no surprise, but I didn’t have everything figured out when I started The PMO Squad. I had a general idea of the services that I wanted to offer and how they would be delivered, but working with our clients over the years is what paved the path for where we are today.   
    This includes our concepts and offerings such as The Purpose Driven PMO, the Project Management Journey, and Project Management as a Service. Everything we’ve created that provides value is a result of listening to what our customers need and want to be successful. 

I’d like to thank everyone that’s been involved in our journey over the past decade: clients, employees, contractors, vendors, consultants, and everyone else we’ve worked with along the way. This milestone would not have been possible without you! 

We’re looking to beat the odds again as we move into our second decade. The Bureau of Labor and Statistics says that only 25% of companies make it 15 years or more. With your help, we’ll be reflecting on our 20th year together in 2033! 

Are you lost or struggling to gain traction on your Project Management Journey?

Schedule a Complimentary Strategy Session with one of our experts so that we can discover your challenges, design your solution, and implement success in your projects!

We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason.