The hardest part about technology projects is rarely technology. The real challenges typically lie within team composition, process, and how individuals communicate. These things aren’t easy to fix; they aren’t even always easy to see. From small business to the enterprise, the pace of commerce is increasing exponentially. Today’s managers and business owners are inundated with new information, new ways to stay connected, notifications, and ultimately… distractions. It’s not easy to prioritize and that makes it easy to overlook even the most obvious problems.
These days, we so often hear things like, technology will enable human potential. These kinds of statements feel backwards. It’s human potential that should unlock technology; not the opposite. We’re certainly not denying the power of technology, it’s what we do, but we want to reshape the narrative. Technology is distracting us more and more. It’s distracting managers, it’s making people less accountable, and many times it’s even creating an illusion of productivity. After all, doing email doesn’t always equate to doing work. Anyway, while tasks like building apps, writing code, and consulting on delivery management is what we do, our mission is to help our clients unlock human potential through team empowerment, smarter ways of working, and setting the next generation up for success.
Bringing this back to the technology… so many technology projects are over budget, behind schedule, or are never even released. It’s almost an epidemic, really. It’s a waste of time, money, and human potential. Let’s take a look at just some of the reasons for this:
- Teams (and more importantly, managers) are submerged in wall-to-wall meetings
- Sacrificing quality for speed of delivery
- Hero Culture – “Tom isn’t here. We really need Tom for this. We’re stuck until Tom returns.“
- Suboptimal project planning and forecasting
- Over-engineered solutions
- Individual contributors are spread between projects, forced to context switch more than should be acceptable
- Teams are too big, while roles are not well defined
- We could go on and on…
The point here isn’t to paint a negative picture but sometimes you just need to call it like it is. The sooner you can identify the problems, the closer you are to solutions. We operate according to Lean Thinking. It’s a mindset that drives us and we work hard to not only infuse it into our own culture, but to also influence our clients to think and operate at another level. Over the next few months, we will be be publishing a series that takes a closer look at Lean Thinking, the seven Lean Development Principles, and explore how these things can immediately make a positive impact on your business. Thank you for coming with us on this journey.