Author: Miguel Hurtado, CAPM

Miguel Hurtado 

For our first "Coffee with" I am very happy to have Susana Moreno as my first guest. Architect, PMP Certified and since April 2020 the new president of PMI Madrid Chapter (my hometown).


PMI Swiss Chapter: Hi Susana and welcome to our first "Coffee with". Tell us,when PMI Madrid chapter was founded and many members are in this chapter?

Answer: I want to tell you first, that is always a joy for me to meet people like you, Miguel. To know that whatever you are, with PMI you can always participate in a great community of Project Managers. Thank you so much for your invitation. It is an honor for me.

The Madrid Spain Chapter was founded in 2003. Some years with an incredible growth and forging an incredible community of Project Managers not only in Madrid, but in 7 branches as well. We are a medium chapter, with more than 1.500 members, of which more than 1.200 are PMP certified. I am very honored to have been elected President, and I have a great responsability from now on. 

PMI Swiss Chapter: You are an Architect, PMP certified and now President but how PMI arrived to your life. How did you discover PMI?

Answer: I was an architect, I managed projects, and the previous crisis no longer forgave me in early 2013. I lost my job. I really didnt know about PMI, in Spain in the construction sector, even today, it is quite unknown. It was a very,very hard time both personally and professionally. My husband is a computer engineer and he didnt understand how I, with the management capacity and all experience I had, did not certify me as a PMP. He encouraged me to do it at that point in my career and I can say that it helped me to value myself more, to value my own experience and professionalism.

From that moment, I got to know the Madrid Chapter, its volunteer activities and I couldnt stop volunteering. From the mentoring program as a mentor, to the Volunteer Management Area, passing by being recognized as the most value volunteer in 2018, and elected to manage the membership area like a member of the board of directors.  The award of the best volunteer of the year take me to LIM (PMI Leadership Institute Meeting) celebrated in Dublin and with the previous president decided that we had to organize the "I Congress Women in Project Management". It was held on March 5 2020, one of my last activities before I was elected President. As you can see, I have lived through a huge professional evolution within my chapter. 

PMI Swiss Chapter: Spain is one the most affected european countries regarding COVID-19 healthy situation and Spain suffers an economic crisis because this situation. How is PMI Madrid managing this moment and how is the actual situation for PMP / CAPM?

Answer:  Well, you know Spain. A country in which tourism is one of its main sources of wealth, a paralysis of its sector for several months has been a very hard blow, and not only that... the tremendous number of deceased and affected has caused an anemic status that also inevitably impacts our way of consumption. All of this is affecting our recovery. We are living a very complex moment, the disruption we were glipsing has accelerated. Tele working,home office, digital transformation, personal distance... everything was going to come but COVID-19 has sent it to us in just a couple of months. But I think it was a good opportunity, from PMI Madrid we have understood that there are new ways to continue to grow our partners and in this moment the most important (more than ever) is to be close to them.  We can reach all of them for the first time keeping the social distance, remember there are 7 branches scattered througout Spain including the Canary Islands. Events with them has been very easy for the first time.

And beyond this paradigm shift, I think it is time to raise awareness of the importance, now more than ever, of the figure of the Project Manager. Companies must be competitive if they want to survive in Spain. Organizational strategy has never been so close to Projects, for that I am convinced that from PMI we have a great social responsability to put in value our member, PMP and CAPM certified but PMI-ACP and to the rest of certified as well. They have the abilities, the knowledge, the soft skills to make grow the Spanish organizations again, now more than ever. 

PMI Swiss Chapter: PMI introduced some changes, for example now the PMP exam is also available to be done in a virtual way, they hold virtual events and virtual keynotes. Is PMI Madrid organizing virtual events too? What can you tell us about them?

Answer:  We want to hold events in person again. But the experience of organizing virtual events has been very positive. I think that the virtual and face-to-face world will overlap and things will never be the same again. 

We are already organizing our November Congress that will be totally virtual, and that will allow us for the first time that all our members can attend it wherever they are. It is our great annual event. 

But in June we already had an incredible experience, the first event celebrated by all Chapters in Spain. In Spain, in addition to Madrid there are chapters in Barcelona,Galicia,Andalusia and Valencia. All of them joined for the organization of the Virtual Open Space Summer Edition 2020 (#VOSSE2020). More than 900 people registered, from all over Spain and from allied chapters in Latin America. We were able to debate in 5 rooms simultaneously, in two different rounds on those topics that were proposed and voted by the attendees. With a magician performance in the opening, a contest with prizes and questions on topics related to PMI and PMI certifications. A virtual experience that has made it clear that borders no longer exist and that diversity all it makes is to enrich our knowledge and points of view.

PMI Swiss Chapter: Since April 2020 you are the new president of the PMI Madrid, which are your next challenges for the PMI Madrid chapter?

Answer: My challenge is to value the figure of the Project Manager. Now more than ever, you must know the value of PMI and the professionals who build and nurture the community you build continuously. We dont just become certified, we are commited professionals who continue to grow and learn to add more value to our projects and organizations. 

But I also want our project managers to understand the moment we are living. For the first time, knowledge of our sector and our certification are no longer enough. We must know more than ever the context in which we operate, innovation, transformation, disruption, diversity, invades everything. It does not matter in which sector we work. We need to listen, enrich ourselves, interact, share..

Our events will transmit the Project Economy and our professionals will be presented at events with other organizations. I want to show who we are and how important we are to achieve a sustained recovery that help us to be more resilient, in a future that is presented to us loaded with global threats such as Climate Change, Cybersecurity, Pandemics... and these global threats do not understand of races or borders, only people.


PMI Swiss Chapter: Dear Susana, thanks a lot for this fantastic coffee talk and for giving us the opportunity to know more about PMI Madrid. Muchas gracias! 


You can follow Susana Moreno on her social network profiles:

Twitter: @sumorenoga


For more information regarding the "I Congress Women in Project Management":

For more information regarding "Virtual Open Space Summer Edition 2020":