We have been “fixing” projects for many decades, and to be fair, we have come a long way. But still, we struggle to deliver business value and results consistently. The reason is simple – in the late 1960s, we adopted a project delivery model from construction project management – the Turnkey Model. With Turnkey, came the idea that projects should deliver “deliverables” and that Critical Path was a key driver of success – to finish “on time and budget”. These models work well for construction but not very well for business/ strategy/ IT projects.
To deliver value and strategic results, project managers need to learn some new mental models to wrap around the traditional project ones:
• How to define Desired Outcomes – carefully crafted statements that describe what the future looks like when it is working just right, and
• Outcomes Path dependency shows how decisions open up or close down alternative futures and how focusing on early outcomes can simplify and dramatically accelerate the delivery of project results.
This Bite explains why and also gives a quick dive into the “how”.