I know, project management or project leadership blogs and postings are boring. It’s all the same stuff. Only the unicorns or the wizards have anything useful to say for the rest of us who daily have to manage things rather than people.
I don’t do boredom well.
I’m not a dedicated project manager as in PMP or PMi certified (yet). But I do manage projects of various sizes and if the risk, cost, or effort exceeds a certain point, it becomes a project rather than a task or support request. Elevation of an effort to a platform of being managed is a topic for another time but of great importance if chaos is to be trumped in you organization.
But what is in a name? Identity. Simply that for starts. Projects are about the pieces. Like a Rube Goldberg trap, the parts and pieces and the actions of each determine the final outcome. As a project manager/leader the first thing is to give the project identity, and start naming things. Stakeholders, sponsors, systems, resources, locations, files, reports, water boys, and anything else that is involved. Give it a name, and identify what it is, what it does, and why it is there.
Preach it, Preach it, Preach it to your team, leadership, followers, minions, and resources. No Clouds. Nothing ambiguous. No whatchamacallits. If it can’t be defined and named, maybe it does not belong.
Jettison the unneeded things early. Open the door and push, then shut the door and move on. Report the offload of the undeeded like a mob thug to your boss man. Make it clear that if it does not belong, you’re outta here.
You would be surprised what sticks in the craws of very intelligent folks over the course of a project. “Remember this, why don’t we talk about this anymore?” Then you waste time talking about something that did not get the 86 earlier on.
No clouds. No puffy white things that can’t be contained. Give it a name. Does it belong. Why is it mentioned. Be a Colombo and ask questions irregardless of the other party things your frumpy and off track. Write it down, and decide the fate on your own dime.
Does it belong. No. Lop it off and notify the team. If yes, give it a name and purpose and put it on the bench to play when called upon.