Running a tight schedule

| Work and play | 2 Comments

One of the most difficult tasks I have at the moment is playing the role of diplomat between the technical folks and the commercial guys and gals. Seems there is a potential communication gap that I try to bridge using the tools of carefully thought out strategies and subtle jumping through hoops in order not accidentally to catch on fire. Coming from the one side of the canyon you hear things like: why is it taking so long? costs way too much money! And from the other side you can hear: we will never be able to finish it by then, we need more time! that's not in the requirements. The gentle art of interaction, people management, controlling (false) expectations, heeding to this and standing firm to that, it is all part of the game. I would not say that it is in my natural born tendencies to deal effectively with these illogical inconsistencies. Indeed it is against my grain and thus stressful tugging me sometimes in wrong directions. With my technical background and natural urge to relate to colleagues around me, however, I am making good progress with developing improving these difficult skills. Today was again tense to say the least. Announcing that my project would be delayed by a couple of weeks. Of course, no one will be happy, except the technical folks and the third party with a little bit more breathing room and a new opportunity to better the quality of the goods. Sigh of relief, but not for me. Stand firm and take the brunt of the attack, talk your way around the circles of curlicue conversations, make sense and even more sense if that is possible. Do not take it personally, believe in what you are doing, emanate energy and faith in the situation, remain sublime and positive, and have complete confidence in the performance of those team members which you have the honor of leading into battle.

2 Comments

Doesn't sound like a "delay" to me. It sounds like the team has had a better chance to understand the challenges and requirements and thus has to "restate" the time allocations.

Yeah Stu, when you think about it logically, yes the team has more slack to produce better quality. But formally as I am the so-called project manager I am responsible for losing (slight) control of the project so it is my neck. Off I go to the guillotine. But wait a minute, they still need me to finish off the (important) project, so they can't do that now. Whew, that was a close one! But what if the project fails in the end. Oh dear, better make sure I skedaddle out of there before that happens.

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This personal weblog was started way back on July 21, 2001 which means that it is 7-21-2001 old.

So far this blog contains no less than 2279 entries and as many as 1881 comments.

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Graduated from Stanford 6-5-1979 ago.

Kiffin Rockwell was shot down and killed 9-23-1916 ago.

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