After being to umpteen project and governance meetings, running gazillion Quality Assurance sessions and delivering many projects (successfully and some considered something I could be shot for) I would like to outline the phenomenon of projects….triggered by a personal experience I had lately.
Sitting across from a stressed executive who has a large multimillion dollar project running for over 6 months and not able to justify their existence anymore he says to me “This isn’t right….there isn’t traction that it needs…”
At that moment I asked three questions, which resulted in, further “holy crap” moments, these questions were:
- Do we have buy in across the organization and project members?
- Do we have clarity around what, who and when things (Deliverables) are to fall in line?
- Does the project team have the chance to focus on the outcome and drive this hard in a measurable way?
These questions resulted in further stress lines appearing across the execs face.
However, those made me realize that most people won’t understand or appreciate the addictive nature of projects…
Therefore, here is what happens when one gets “hooked” onto projects:
- You get obsessive about dates, and how it builds towards your clients outcomes. In some cases….extreme cases you get stuck on time as well so you get precise as such 12/03/18 12:15pm the deployment begins.
- You always think of what could fall over (risk turning to issue turning to show stoppers). And boy this can result in blank looks when people are speaking with you…but hey most project professionals have an awesome poker face…And you all know that is a requirement
- You get a buzz out of achieving something no matter how small they are like sending out actions from a daily catch up meeting – insane huh?
In addition, in this craziness lies the beauty of projects:
- It is beautiful because it is precise, measurable and achievable (if it isn’t you need to give your PM a kick)
- It enables one to daily risk being around and working with the most unpredictable things on earth I.e. People. Yes people, when you are sitting across a table of people you would quickly realize that everyone there has a lot of things going on and in order to enable the outcome for the organization; you need to get these individuals to buy in, be clear and focus on adding value
- No matter what you do there is always something more that could be done…But hey, you have to choose what you want to focus on. Amazing isn’t it? We at that moment get down to what needs to happen and that pressure ends making simple people into projects super human. They transform into beings who will do what is needed, coming out of their shells and pushing the whole project towards the outcome – hallelujah!!
And this is why projects are addictive…So please handle them with care. Tie them back to your values and ensure you are focused on the ensuring you are managing risks for your customers and supporting the super beings!!
And if you are stuck give us a shout….