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Frank Patrick's Focused Performance Business Blog
This Focused Performance Weblog started life as a "business management blog" containing links and commentary related primarily to organizational effectiveness with a "Theory of Constraints" perspective, but is in the process of evolving towards primary content on interactive and mobile marketing. Think of it as about Focusing marketing messages for enhanced Performance. If you are on an archive page, current postings are found here.

Friday, February 07, 2003

More on Deadlines -- Hal Macomber (who I should have credited for pointing me to yesterday's deadlines piece), points to another piece on the subject by Tom Mochal, this one tactics for dealing with deadlines that are in trouble. While Hal picks up the "people" side and suggests that dealing with the team's mood should come first before taking Tom's suggested concrete actions to get the project back under control, that mood is in an effect-cause-effect loop. The lack of control leads to failed mood which leads to difficulties getting back in control which leads to worse mood which leads to...

Pulling together realistic views of risks, scope, issues, and openly communicating them, as suggested in the Mochal piece, is, in my opinion, a necessary precursor to confidence in the team. But in addition to that, if systemic issues that come from beyond the specifics of the particular project are not addressed, there is good chance that any refinements of the project or any mood-enhancing methods will be for naught. The combination of good, effective PM practices, combined with a vision on how the system will be changed will at least provide the bummed out resources with a bit of a reason for believing that things will be "different this time." But as I wrote last year, it takes just a few wrong words or actions on the part of management to prove the nay-sayers right.

Moods and attitudes can work for or against you. To get them working for you, they first have to develop momentum in the right direction. To even get them even started moving in the right direction, you need to provide a concrete footing underneath and a map and compass to tell them that they are walking in the desired talk or not.

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