I was stumped when I had a group of 7 people – all from the same team, asked the above question.
The request to work with this group came from their manager. He told me that the team had a project to work on and needed to develop their project management skills.
What does this project look like?
During the morning of day 1 of this 2 day course we covered setting up the project and defining the project in more detail. It was at this point that the group were unclear as to what was going to be delivered. One person thought a report was needed, another person thought a training programme, another person thought it was a recommendation based around some research.
It was clear that they were unclear!
Project Sponsor is called upon to brief the team
The solution; the project manager called the project sponsor and he came along and discussed the project and the group with the group. They were now clear that they had to deliver a training programme!
The group identified two aspects as key learning points:
- the value of the briefing – the line manager admitted he had been too busy to brief the team effectively. This resulted in him having to take time out to do it more effectively
- the value of the project initiation document (PID)
The group came to the conclusion that they were unclear as to what was expected of them when we spoke about the use of the PID. Interestingly, this happened about the time a client had the results of a survey on project management training course we ran for them. The survey found that the greatest value to those who attended the course was using the PID! Great feedback.
So, are you really clear what you are delivering? If not, engineer a briefing/discussion with your sponsor or manager and use the PID!
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