X1 Evaluate the generated strategic value X2 Optimize and balance the value generation strategy X3 Conduct a focused communication Y1 Evaluate portfolio stakeholder satisfaction Y2 Evaluate the ongoing programs and projects Y3 Plan improvements Y4 Conduct a focused communication Z1 Manage follow-up items Z2 Start, stop, or pause programs and projects Z3 Balance resources Biannual Cycle Monthly Cycle Daily Cycle

Z2 - Start, stop, or pause programs and projects

NOTE: This is a public draft of the manual. Please submit your comments using the form below the pages by the end of February 2024 and return later for the final version.


This activity gives permission to sponsors to start, stop, or pause their programs or standalone projects based on the Value Generation Matrix.


To ensure alignment, no program or standalone project may be started, stopped, or paused in the organization without permission of the portfolio management system. Projects that are underneath programs will require permission from the program management system rather than the portfolio management system.


The portfolio manager and the sponsors work together in this activity.


Sponsors are allowed to initiate their programs and projects (assign a team to create a high-level plan without executing it) if they need to create a more precise Business Case (e.g., in response to requests for proposals from external clients), but they must receive the portfolio manager’s approval before starting the execution (e.g., activity A08 of P3.express). They should also ask for permission before closing the program or project, at which time, the portfolio manager would ensure that their documents are archived properly, among other things.

Sometimes, such as during emergencies, the relative justification of programs and projects change so dramatically that it would make sense to pause an ongoing program or project and start working on something else. The portfolio manager and the sponsor would discuss such cases in this activity.

When a decision is brought to this activity, the portfolio manager is allowed to make the decision along with the sponsor according to the Value Generation Matrix. If the prior decisions of the portfolio board, as reflected in the matrix, are not enough for making the decision or the portfolio manager and the sponsor can’t reach an agreement, the portfolio manager should run an exceptional Biannual Cycle and ask the portfolio board for a Strategy Workshop.

The portfolio manager must ensure that sponsors are not running too many programs and projects in parallel and finish the ongoing ones before starting the next ones in the matrix.

Minor changes in the organization may be best implemented by ad hoc tasks. However, the portfolio manager must ensure that there’s a reasonable amount of such tasks and they don’t replace structured changes (programs and projects).

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