The point is, I am allergic to rules.
I have a good reason for that: if rules are logical, it is absolutely no problem to follow them. But far too often, they are not, so that a strong reward-, and an even stronger penalty system is necessary to enforce following them.
I am a much bigger fan of logical thinking. An open door, seemingly, but I will illustrate how much it is not. In the marketing modules I train, I am so often confronted with the question, which methodology to follow, especially, when they are simultaneously following another module as well. Unfortunately, you cannot express their despair very well on screen, but take it from me: it is not to be taken lightly. Because: “in management we use method A and you are now talking about method B and which one are we supposed to use and when?!”.
Since the 70′s we can observe, how much professionals need hat racks and methodologies. Particularly in information technology, that large automation companies like HP and IBM took on huge projects, of which they very often didn’t have a clear cut picture, how the project would evolve. Let alone the management of the project. A thorough feedback and monitoring system ensured timely adjustments and alignments with reality and a consequent satisfactory result.
But when a project like that had ended, the organization planned to exploit the documentation and reporting on the course of the project. Write a book about it and pretend the management of projects is always done according to these methodologies. This has incurred two issues: first of all, there has been a proliferation of apparent project management techniques and even many more books about them. Secondly, softwate packages, that had been developed in this way, were marketed as standard software.
I much more prefer a problem oriented approach. This means, that I like to clarify the problem and the consequent goal of the project and align the necessary resources. Obviously, this means using proven tools, I mean, the carpenter also uses hammer and screwdrivers. But whether he uses nails or screws, or that he maybe needs to glue it this time, depends on the problem. Exactly the same goes for consultancy projects. And in this case, I think it is completely unimportant, whether we need to use nails, screws, glue or rope, as long as it sticks.
Now please understand me correctly, in spite of what the title could imply, ”go-with-the-flow” doesn’t mean, that you just charge through an issue blindly. To me it means, that after a clear project definition, I am being guided by observations through logical thinking and process approaches.
And our clients exactly understand the purpose, once they know what the problem is. When they understand, that is not about the path, but about the destination.