Don’t Screw This Up: Consistency

Filed under Definitions | Posted by PMStudent

A solid implementation of project management must have the attribute of consistency.? Without it, how can

Old Faithful 1856 - by speedphotos via Flickr

Old Faithful 1856 - by speedphotos via Flickr

sponsors make good judgments about what projects to take on?? How could you possibly seek to improve?

Random Project Management

This is what I did when I first starting managing projects.? I didn’t know I was managing a “project” per se, just that something needed to get done.? I wasn’t systematic about my approach, and so I did this for years without really making significant progress in my ability to deliver projects well.

It would have been impossible for me to do “good” project planning, because I was all over the place and shooting from the hip on every prior project.

Systems Enable Consistency

When I found out about formal project management as a discipline, I learned to apply systems to my project work.? This enabled me to learn from past successes and failures, analyze performance, and project performance into the future with some degree of accuracy.? As time went on, that accuracy became greater.? My ability to repeat success became greater.

Theory Enables Consistency

If you have no over-arching theory behind the way you manage projects, then it’s difficult to determine exactly how to make things better.? You can’t be proactive, only reactive.

“Rational behavior requires theory. Reactive behavior requires only reflex action. W. Edwards Deming

Being in a reactive mode is not conducive to consistency.? It means whenever something changes, you have no basis from which to respond in a rational manner.? Good systems enable you to predict potential outcomes (risk management) before they happen most of the time.