Do You Have Your Blinders On?

As a project manager do you have your blinders on?  It is important when managing a project to remember that your project does not occur in a vacuum.  With everything that needs to be done on a project it is crucial that the project manager and the project team understand where their project fits into the overall business.  Throughout the project, and especially as the project gets more challenging or runs into problems, it will help to keep support for the project high if everyone understands and can communicate how the project will help the business achieve its business objectives.

It also helps to view the project in terms of how it will fit into the overall systems that make up the various business processes that keep the business running on a day to day business.  Understanding how the project will change and fit into the systems of the business will also help with understanding who the project stakeholders are, what possible risks and in evaluating the overall project value to the business.

This concept of thinking of the business in terms of its systems is called systems thinking, and it is a holistic view of carrying out the projects within the context of the organization. Systems thinking is a topic that is near and dear to my heart as Business Systems Analyst.  If you can take the time to define the scope of the system, evaluating its problems, opportunities, constraints and needs you can more easily understand the scope of your project within that system and how it will address them.

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