What Doesn't Work

                                           So now maybe you’re thinking, I know all about projects. We’ve got more project teams around here than I can count. And they’re teams of good, hard-working people. But we’re still not getting anything done the way it needs to get done or in the time we need it. What I need must be too big, too complex, or too something, because it’s not happening. What used to work around here isn’t working anymore.

So, are project teams the wrong answer?

No. But ineffective teams are.

A project team that hasn’t bonded around its project, that hasn’t conducted focused stakeholder interviews, and that hasn’t built a realistic detailed project plan doesn’t work. It just doesn’t work. They may be a group of competent and diligent individuals with the best of intentions, but…they don’t have a team-built plan, genuine agreement, and a clear goal. Instead, each person is delivering what they think you want, each one making assumptions about what needs to be done.

And they have team meetings or maybe they don’t. And they bring you a hammer when you need a nail. And they’re excited and proud. You don’t want to demoralize them. So you try to tell them again about that nail you need, without becoming the enemy.

And you think, maybe I’ll get lucky.

Maybe somebody else will do it.

Maybe a management class will help.

But you wind up frustrated because rocking the boat doesn’t work. Playing along doesn’t work. You start to think – nothing works.

2003 Erika Jones & Associates, Inc.