As consultants, it’s not OK to be complacent. If you’ve been doing it the same way for years, then chances are good you’re long overdue for an improvement overhaul.
We constantly need to be benchmarking how we’re doing against other industry leaders, continually working toward making everything we do better. I want Management Solutions to be a consulting company of industry thought leaders. In order to do that, we must stay ahead of the competition. We must be the ones that are pushing the envelope and asking ourselves, how can we continuously get better. To that point, I’ve taken on two new initiatives within Management Solutions.
- We are launching a Project Quality Office that will help us constantly improve how we execute projects internally and the way we service our clients. Quality must be at the forefront of every single aspect of what we do and every single partnership that we have with our customers. We have a team that’s been actively working on this since January and we’re on schedule to launch this fall. So, more to come on this soon!
- Results-based accountability (RBA) – This is a whole new concept in the project management world. We have all the technology in the world and all the expertise in the world at our fingertips, but data shows us that projects are still not hitting the mark on adding value to the customer and other stakeholders. Sure, we’re measuring things like what’s our percent complete, how much did it cost us, were we ahead or behind schedule – all the traditional metrics we track, but the whole premise behind results-based accountability is to step back and say, did we have a positive impact on our customers and stakeholders?
Below are 7 steps that our team uses to ensure we’re adding positive value to everything we do. The process starts with a manager who cares about the quality of service and is committed to turning talk into action.
- Step 1: Who are our customers?
- Step 2: How can we measure if our customers are better off?
- Step 3: How can we measure if we’re delivering services well?
- Step 4: How are we doing on the most important measures?
- Step 5: Who are the partners that have a role to play in doing better?
- Step 6: How can we improve what’s being done, including no-cost or low-cost ideas?
- Step 7: What do we propose to do?
As project management practitioners, it should never be enough to just say, “I’m doing all I need to do contractually. I’m submitting my monthly reports. I’m checking all the required boxes.” We should always be looking for ways to improve, to move the dial forward for our customers. At the end of each day, I want our customers to easily see the positive results of the work we’re doing and the products we’re delivering.