project management team building & leadership expert michael cardus

Attempting to institute new projects and processes within an existing culture can prove to be Sisyphean. Working against existing folkloric constructs of;

  • “if it ain’t broke”
  • It has always been that way
  • This will pass, like the other projects
  • Remember 20 year ago we tried something like that and it failed miserably
  • etc…

And everyone understands (somewhere in their minds) that the organization, team, process is in constant adjustment. As a project leader/manager one of your primary responsibilities is to increase the absorptive capacity of the project to organizational and community stakeholders. This requires you (as the project manager) to use influence skills and inter-personal skills to know how to and in what way to approach theses stakeholders to create the greatest support for the project, and the project team.

Here is a checklist that will serve you in identifying the individual and perhaps team / organizational stakeholder interests.    

Have you taken these steps?

□ Where it makes sense, you’ve asked the other person. (this sends a positive signal: i.e. that you view the person’s interest as important.)

□ You’ve checked with others who know this person better and are in a better position to ask about interests

□ You’ve made inferences about what matters to the person based on his/her position, department goals, public behavior and comments

□ You’ve imagined yourself in the other person’s position and have made a list of what would be important to you if you were that person.

Have you considered these possible interests?

   □ Desire to keep job

□ Money

□ Resources

□ Need to be seen as competent

□ Need to prove value to organization

□ Reputation

□ Others’ perception

   □ Power

□ Control over events or departments

□ Fairness

□ Saving face

□ Concerns about a relationship

□ Setting a precedent

Rath & Strong’s Six Sigma Team Pocket Guide.


michael cardus is create-learning

image by by Emergency Photography.