The above idea came from a tweet I saw in April. It read:
Before explaining fully let me say a thank you to Operation Saves Lives, they probably never intended the above to go in the direction I am going to take it.
So why was I taken aback? Well for a number of reasons. I operate in the project management space. I see many things which can best be summed up as the good, the bad and the ugly. Sadly, much of what I see is in the latter two areas. Let me give you some examples:
- a project started without a business case so there is little evidence that the project is worth while doing
- an end date given without any rationale of why it was chosen
- stakeholders completely ignored or not involved in what is a key change management project
- a project where the objectives are unclear. There are 3 ideas within the project team and the sponsor has his own
- no clear project priorities established in the business which means everything needs to be delivered at the same time
Common sense and project management – should go hand in hand
Now these are only some of the examples where common sense seems to have gone out of the window. Take a look back at the above examples. Would you invest in a project where no investment appraisal had been done and where the benefits have not been clearly identified? Why was a delivery date given before the project manager had been appointed? In fact it was given at an internal meeting within 30 minutes of the idea being discussed.
You want change within the business but do not involve the stakeholders? That should be interesting!
How can you deliver something without clearly agreed and written objectives? Project priorities; a real issue but one which does not seem to be well addressed. (Take a look at Simple project portfolio management)
Where is the common sense?
So, if only common sense was …well, more common, then maybe the record for delivering projects would not be as bad.