Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Watch what you're aiming for

Don't Mistake the Finger Pointing at the Moon for the Moon - Zen

There is a difference between targeting your goals and measuring your progress. You determine where you are, you determine where you want to be and then you set a plan to get there. Along the way you perform various checks to see your progress and health.

Often times people confuse the checks/scales for the goals - they think being 'thin' is a goal, where the goal should be being healthy and weight is one indicator. When people make this mistake they often inflict damage on themselves. Everyone knows about women/girls who fixate on weight - they do severe damage to themselves - here's a disturbing video of it http://www.facetheissue.com/bulimiamovie.html

Isn't it the same for Project Management? (yes, bulimia and those issues are much more critical issues.....just using it as an example). Do we tend to mistake the 'scales' for the goals? A GOOD example is CMM - YES CMM. What was suppose to be, in my mind, a scale, many companies take for a goal. Why would anyone target CMM for a goal? Isn't a goal usually something like customer satisfaction through service and innovative design? Isn't a goal a productive healthy work environment? Isn't a goal something like having a huge market share? What does that have to do with setting a goal to 'Managed Processes'? Isn't that just a determination to how well you're managing? Are you willing to give up customer satisfaction for it?

Let's see....mmmmm..a trade off needs to be made between user satisfaction and 'Managed Processes' - well of course - I'll sacrifice user satisfaction to I can gain more on the CMM scale. If someone said that to me - seriously - and if I had the ability - that person would be gone.

Set goals that provide growth, potential, strength, etc. Let's use tools and scales to determine how were are progressing. Also, make sure that the scales/checks that you are using provide the best feedback. Compare CMM 'Managed Processes' to the Agile Alliance Manifesto of 'Individuals and interactions over processes and tools' . If you want customer satisfaction - what's a better scale? How well your processes are managed or if you're having positive interactions with your customers?

No comments:

Post a Comment