5 Things to Think about After Stand-up
Correct but not Sufficient

PMBOK 5 - Accepted

Acceptance Well, what an on / off / on-again relationship this has turned out to be. After explaining how I was rejected from the PMI PMBOK v5 initiative previously, I received news this week that I have been accepted onto the content creation group for the next version of the PMBOK v5 Guide.

I am not sure if this is a result of me expressing my concern to the PMI that the roughly 60% of PMI members who are engaged in IT likely want some better agile project management guidance and there seemed no one on the committee to provide that. Or simply the ripple down selection of more candidates inthe content creation categories. 

Anyway, I am grateful for the opportunity and am looking forward to contributing wherever I can, because here’s the kicker, I have been accepted onto the group to rewrite Chapter 12 on Procurement. This is odd because when volunteering to contribute we had to rank which chapters we would most like to work on. Given my agile designs on planning, scheduling and estimation these are the areas I ranked highest, ranking Procurement as the lowest.

Now, perhaps I got my high / low ends of the scales mixed up and I accidently voted Procurement highest, but I do not think so. Perhaps the selection committee thought fine, if we have to have this agile windbag onboard, put him over in Procurement where he can do least damage! Or perhaps simply not many people volunteered for Procurement and so that’s where the only opening was. I have sent an enquiry into the PMI, but am not holding my breath for a reply.

Anyways, so now I need to determine how to best influence the Procurement process with an agile perspective. It is quite applicable as I am currently going through an RFI and RFP process with my main client and last year, at the Agile Business Conference in London, I was in discussions with the developers of the new Agile Contract group which may have a tie in.

So, not the role I was looking for, but perhaps a small foot in the door, time will tell and I will keep you posted.




I think this is awesome. I believe that procurement is a critical obstacle to getting agile into organizations. When we require explicit scope, cost, and timing to be detailed up front in the contract we guarantee we can't get learning and feedback in the product without heavy change management. This "contract" model also exists internal to many organizations where funding won't be approved without an inflexible change management process in place. This is particularly important as more and more software development is being outsourced.

Let's get agile procurement practices into the PMBOK. This will be a major step forward to helping with adoption of Agile at the Enterprise.

Dennis Stevens

Mike Griffiths

Hi Dennis,

Thanks for your encouragement. You are right, it is an important area, not where I would have liked to start, but a starting point non the less. I might be contacting you for your insights if you are amenable.

Best Regards

Hal Hunt, PMP

Hello Mike,

Looks like we will be colleagues on the PMBOK-5 Content Team. This will be my third PMI standard -- worked on OPM3 and Program Management previously. Based on that experience, I expect that we'll have some spirited discussions and many exchanges of viewpoints leading to an outstanding product. Much is changing in the world of PM that I hope can be integrated into Edition 5. Looking forward to working with you and the rest of the team!


Hal Hunt, PMP
Ashburn, Virginia
(23 years managing projects in nine countries.)

Mike Griffiths

Hi Hal,

Thanks for getting in touch and I look forward to working with you also. I did some work on PMBOK v3, but most of my agile related suggestions were not adopted, hopefully now the time is right. I really hope there are some spirited discussions and exchanges of views - I believe they are needed.



Sorry, Mike. I disagree completely! Agile is a methodology of software/project development. The last thing the PMBOK needs is to be hijacked into the IT world, in my opinion, and I come from the IT world. The one thing I have always liked about the PMBOK/PMI approach is its industry-agnosticism.

I believe that the more the PMP/PMBOK/PMI brand is yanked down the road of "IT-centricity" the less the brand will be of value to other project management endeavors. We have to be big-enough to realize that our way of thinking about project management does not mean that everyone must agree or even use.

I for one believe that the PMBOK/PMI should remain industry,method-agnostic. How would you feel if the manufacturing industry came up with Aglint/Scrap (a method/conditioning for managing projects that came out of the manufacturing discipline), and started trying to move the PMBOK/PMI towards their mindset or way of doing things?

Be careful what you wish for since it has a nasty way of coming around and biting you where it can hurt.



I wanted to at least reference my assertion that "agile is a methodology..." since I know I will probably be flamed for that statement, but here is the link for the basis of that assertion:


If this is not so then someone with Agile practice expertise needs to tell the world its not...

Take care,


Mike Griffiths

Hi again PNanouk,

No need to apologise, it is OK to have different opinions and I agree the industry agnostic nature of the PMBOK is a great strength. There are many ways to work with the PMI and PMBOK to assist with industry focussed additions. The Extension to the PMBOK for the Construction industry is a great example that has not eroded the value of the PMBOK Guide.

I am not hoping to infuse the PMBOK Guide with IT specific content (that would not be useful anyway) rather to help explain that in some high change, high complexity domains the PMBOK concepts of progressive elaboration and rolling wave planning deserve elevated coverage. Also to consider some of the other emerging project management concepts from Kanban and Lean (which come from outside of software) but can also add great value in high change environments.

Best regards

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