Enterprise Project Governance: How to Manage Projects Successfully Across the Organization : Performance Based EPG


By Paul Dinsmore & Luiz Rocha 

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

When driving a car, a glance at the dashboard provides feedback data on the vehicle’s performance. Speed, fuel levels, and engine temperature are shown on the gauges, and a GPS gives directions about the most convenient and efficient route.  The input destination to the GPS corresponds to an organization’s strategy since the strategy defines where an organization wants to go. To get there, companies require guidance and gauges to help measure the progress along the way.

The importance of performance measurement is summed up by Osborne and Gaebler (1992) in their book Reinventing Government. As they point out, the biggest influence on their thinking came from management consultants like Thomas Peters, Edward Deming, and Peter Drucker, from recognition that corporations suffer from bureaucratic rigidities, and that their structures are rooted in bygone eras. They also emphasize that “hierarchical, centralized bureaucracies designed in the 1930s or 1940s simply do not function well in the rapidly changing, information-rich, knowledge-intensive society and economy”. With this in mind they conceptualized the rationale for a performance framework:

  • What gets measured gets done.
  • If you don’t measure results, you can’t tell success from failure.
  • If you can’t see success, you can’t reward it.
  • If you can’t reward success, you’re probably rewarding failure.
  • If you can’t see success, you can’t learn from it.
  • If you can’t recognize failure, you can’t correct it.
  • If you can demonstrate results, you can win public support.

Even a well-designed, planned, resourced and executed EPG will face challenges. Managers are often confronted with the four strategic questions mentioned on our previous article and the fifth strategic question related to the execution phase: How are we progressing to achieve what we want to achieve?


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This series includes articles by Paul Dinsmore and Luiz Rocha, authors of the book Enterprise Project Governance, published by AMACOM in the USA in 2012.  The articles are extracts and summaries of key topics from their book, providing information and guidance on one of the most important aspects of portfolio, program and project management today – governance.  For information about the book, go to http://www.amacombooks.org/book.cfm?isbn=9780814417461

About the Authors 

usa-brazilpaul-dinsmorePaul C. Dinsmore

Paul Dinsmore is board chairman of DinsmoreCompass, and a highly respected specialist in project management and organizational change. A certified project management professional (PMP), he has received the Distinguished Contribution Award and Fellow Award from the Project Management Institute (PMI®). He regularly consults and speaks in North America, South America, Europe and Africa.  Paul is the author and / or editor of numerous articles and 20 books, including the AMA Handbook of Project Management. Mr. Dinsmore resides in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. 

flag-brazilluiz-rochaLuiz Rocha

Luiz Rocha has 35+ years of experience in the industry and business consulting. Luiz worked with Andersen Consulting and Delloite in the USA and Europe when he had the opportunity to manage multi-cultural and geographically dispersed projects in Latin America, North America and Europe. In Brazil he worked with Dinsmore Associates and Petrobras. Luiz is an engineer by background, MSc. in industrial engineering from UFRJ – Brazil, PMP-PMI and IPMA certifications. He is also a published author with two previous books, Business Metamorphosis, in Brazil, and Mount Athos, a Journey of Self-Discovery, in the USA.  Luiz can be contacted at [email protected]