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Watching the Process--Management
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Watching the Process--Management

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  • 1. Watching the Process –The ProcessManagement, Project Management, Process Management, each a process. Canyou isolate the moment you realised that? Can you remember the first momentwhen you saw the process in action? I can.I was in the second grade. We were out in the playground for recess. We wereplaying kickball.Recess was unstructured. There was no micromanagement of children then.The two usual classmates were captains. This was SOP. Then, one day, one ofthe teams had a co-captain.While some of the other boys in my class complained, “Why do they always getto be captains?” “They always pick their friends. That’s not fair,” I observed theprocess.The captains were the natural leaders. This was because they were good at thegame and good at picking players. (Athletes will routinely hang out with athletes.Question: Are they picking their friends, or good athletes, or both? Answer: both.)We root for the underdogs; but we want to run with the winners. Good at sportsor bad at sports, each of us wants to be on a winning team.However, we now had co-captains. I was less concerned with why. I simplywanted to be on a winning team. That was over 50 years ago. I still rememberthe day. However, we never stop learning. It was only a few weeks ago when Ithought about that day that I realised something.If you are a good athlete, and I am a good athlete, and we have three powerfulplayers in the class; Tom, Dick, and Harry, and we toss a coin for first pick, thefollowing are the possible results:You have three power players: I have two power players.I have three power players: you have two power players.It comes down to the toss of a coin.Plan B. I have a co-captain. It doesn’t matter who wins the toss. Either way, Ihave three power players on my team and you have two on your team.Now, that was not the end of the lesson. That was the beginning.1. We learned not only about leadership, but also about followship.
  • 2. 2. We learned the art of negotiation and the result of having good leaders.3. We also learned how to get along without being micromanaged by parents.4. There was a lesson in conflict resolution and the value of cooperation.It went on from there.Some of my classmates complained. They, however, had no viable alternative.They also had no appreciation for the objective assessment of what washappening.Some had inflated views of their own skills. (If he can do it, so can I.) Yet, noneever explained why others never gravitated to them as leaders.There was more to be learned by watching the process.1. How did some classmates interact with others?2. How did some interact with the teacher?3. How did the teacher interact with some students as opposed to others?For the last one, I can offer some insight. If the objective is to encourage astudent to participate, the teacher calls on the quiet one. If the objective is toteach the class how to solve a problem, the teacher calls on the student mostlikely to have the correct answer.There is much to be said for participation. There is little to be said for sitting onthe sidelines. However, as Yogi Berra once said, “You can see a lot by justwatching.” To which I shall add, “You can hear a lot by just listening.”What does this have to do with project management?Perhaps you shouldn’t be managing projects.Regards,SlimMail slimfairview@yahoo.comCopyright © 2011 Slim Fairview600 Words. First North American Serial Rights