Time management is challenging in today's world even for the best. When it comes to managing time for an IT Project - it can feel like a daunting task with no good solution.
When clients are struggling with accomplishing their goals and satisfying their commitments to themselves or other organizations, the first questions I tend to ask are:
· What are you doing?
· Do you understand why you are doing it?
· Everything can't be a number 1 priority, so what are your number 1, 2, and 3 priorities?
· Whose help do you need to determine these priorities? Do you have sufficient support from that person or organization?
· What process do you use to determine the priorities? Is everyone in alignment?
· Are your priorities reflected in and working with your timeline?
This at least sets the stage. Don't get me wrong here; setting priorities may not be easy. It may not be straight forward. The challenge for any IT Project leader and CIO/CTO is to effectively engage the users in this process. Sometimes this can be the most daunting task of all. Nobody has time.
The question isn't "Do we have the time?" The real question to ask yourself and others is "Do we have time to NOT do it and what is the downside, if we don't invest the time?"
Before starting any major new project in an organization, whether for internal use or consumption for external use and revenue generation, the following process can be the difference between winning and losing.
· Get clear on the fact that it's a choice. Choose to win.
· Get clear on the concept. All aboard first!
· Get clear on the fact that change is difficult for many. It's not a malady, it's human, so deal with it, or it will deal with you.
· Get clear on the investment needed across the whole "team."
· Get clear in expectations and timelines. Slow and steady beats fast and train wreck everytime.
· Get clear on the fact that you are in the same boat together.
Lastly, I leave you with the following. It's just as easy to win as to loose. We all repeat the same behavior over and over again. People who win, meet or exceed their goals consistently over time, and repeat effective behavior. People who don't win, do not meet their goals consistently over time, and repeat ineffective behavior. If you are not meeting your goals consistently over time, why are you working harder than you need to work?