Projects and Operations: An Amicable Separation

Written by Stephen Hay

Continued from page 1

Projects * Unique * Finite * Deals withrepparttar Future * Revolutionary change * Disequilibrium * Initiate change * Objective to be defined * Transient resources * Flexibility * Effectiveness * Goals * Risk and Uncertainty

Fromrepparttar 119429 lists above, if a project is not actively seeking to initiate change in operations, then it is, in effect, a set of operational activities; improvingrepparttar 119430 situation incrementally.

Operational activities do not, in general, cause disequilibrium. It isrepparttar 119431 operational activities that are destabilised. Byrepparttar 119432 project. Notrepparttar 119433 other way round. Though there are plenty of examples of operations destabilising projects... But this is a resistance to change rather thanrepparttar 119434 initiation of change.

There is, however, a link betweenrepparttar 119435 two. And successful projects need to have this made explicit. To takerepparttar 119436 example of change. Projects are change efforts. But managing change is part of an operational manager's responsibility. Projects identifyrepparttar 119437 change required to move operations intorepparttar 119438 future. Operational managers then managerepparttar 119439 introduction of those changes into their domains so thatrepparttar 119440 new operational practices are different from those beforerepparttar 119441 project.


Problems with mixing Projects and Operations: If a project begins to have characteristics that resemble those of operations, it is probably a good idea to bring it to an end. And ensurerepparttar 119442 handover in a timely and professional manner.

Equally, if a project has within its plan elements that involve operations, it is probably better to take them out. Otherwise there is a risk that operational management falls torepparttar 119443 project manager.

So we need to be wary of "projects" that are: * Uniquely repetitive, * Continuously finite, * Projectingrepparttar 119444 present intorepparttar 119445 future, * Evolutionary rather than revolutionary, * Are stable, efficient and role based, and * Secure.

None of these bearrepparttar 119446 characteristics of a project. Rather they are a mixture of both. They become "projerations", and are generally unsatisfying for everyone working on them.

Overcomingrepparttar 119447 Mixing: One way to overcomerepparttar 119448 mixing of projects and operations is to ensure that operational activities are properly resourced. The absence of correct operational resourcing often leads to projects being "loaded-up" with operational tasks such as report generation, cube building, process mapping, etc.

The people working onrepparttar 119449 projects know this and react, causing tension with their operational activities.

The solution? Ensure that operational activities are correctly resourced. And don't, as far as possible, move unresourced operational activities into projects.

Stephen Hay is the principal of People and Process, , providing process mapping and enterprise architecture services to small and medium sized businesses and not-for-profit organizations.

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A Rare Leadership Skill: Dealing With People Who Want Out By Offering Crowns For Convoy

Written by Brent Filson

Continued from page 1

"Rather proclaim it, Westmoreland, through my host, That he which hath no stomach to this fight, Let him depart; his passport shall be made, And crowns for convoy put into his purse; We would not die in that man's company That fears his fellowship to die with us."

Now, apply this lesson to those people who tell you they want out. You may find yourself reshaping your relationship with them in positive ways and boosting your leadership effectiveness withrepparttar people who remain.

Here's how you do it. Offer them "crowns for convoy." Have them draw up specific leadership actions that they will take to leave. Provide milestones and ways that you and they can monitor their progress. Support them in their taking leave as you would any cause leader who is staying.

One might say that if somebody wants out ... good riddance! But let's examine this. When somebody wants to leave, two facts apply. One is that, clearly, that person - for whatever reason - is dissatisfied and is looking for satisfaction elsewhere. And two is that you have a relationship withrepparttar 119428 person. It might be a good relationship. It might be a bad relationship. But here'srepparttar 119429 point: You don't want to getrepparttar 119430 two facts mixed up in a bad way. Because that relationship will continue in one way or another even if you don't set eyes on each other again.

A bad relationship with an employee that left your organization can come back to haunt you in many unforeseen ways. For instance, it may poison your relationship withrepparttar 119431 people who remain behind. By supporting that person in taking leadership of their leaving, you are creating an opportunity for you to change your relationship with them, to work together in a positive way. This may help redress any bad feelings that might have otherwise grown worse.

When CROWNS FOR CONVOY are not offered in spite or rancor but out of a genuine desire to help, you'll transform a potentially bad situation into a beneficial one. And who knows? Maybe, like Henry, you'll achieve an unexpected upset win.

2005 The Filson Leadership Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

The author of 23 books, Brent Filson's recent books are, THE LEADERSHIP TALK: THE GREATEST LEADERSHIP TOOL and 101 WAYS TO GIVE GREAT LEADERSHIP TALKS. He has been helping leaders of top companies worldwide get audacious results. Sign up for his free leadership e-zine and get a free white paper: "49 Ways To Turn Action Into Results," at

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