Job descriptions vs reality?
- When you take on someone, new make sure the job role is clearly set down.
- Set clear boundaries around the job and explain how it fits with other jobs
- Write SMART objectives – Specific, Measurable, Agreed upon, Realistic, Time Bound
- Make sure you agree timescales for key deliverables
- Be clear on what is not required in the job
- Meet regularly with your employees to review their roles and set new expectations
- As the employee’s capabilities and skills grow, make sure you take off any responsibilities that are too low for them and pass them to more junior staff
- Allow the employee to come up with suggestions on how their job could be improved
- If you request them to join ad hoc projects, cross boundary work streams or special interest groups make sure they have time to do it.
- Reward them for going the extra mile.
Defining Projects & Programmes?
- Ask who are the sponsors of the project? Who is really driving this project/programme? Who are the key stakeholders? Is the business case clear?
- Make sure you set a clear purpose for the project – write it out in simple words – be specific (i.e. the reason for the project)
- Define the goals of a particular project –what are the individual objectives ?
- Make sure the project approach and deliverables are clear? Is this a programme with sub projects – where does it overlap with other projects? What is in scope and also out of scope. (i.e. We will do X, Y, Z but not A,B, C) By Scope we mean what is to be achieved, by when and by whom. What resources will you need – how many people and for how long?
- Use the RACI model. – Who is responsible? Who is Accountable? Who needs to be consulted? Who should be informed? All these are different!
- Identify what the project dependencies are – i.e. what will be needed from customers, clients, colleagues? Access to information and data?
- Set budgets and costs clearly so that anything outside of these has to be renegotiated. Understand the penalties if things go outside of these.
- Establish how you will monitor, review and set key milestones along the way. Don’t be afraid to shout if the project stalls or gets off track. Set a way to manage issues if they arise. e.g. Project escalation path or issues tracking reports.
- Be clear on communications and changes related to your projects. How will these be managed?
- Finally set incentives for doing a good job, within scope and on time!
For more information on Scope Creep check out Toptal’s recommendations https://www.toptal.com/how-to-prevent-and-manage-scope-creep