Your Project's Team Building Success Potential Index

May 10 05:03 2007 Richard Grimes Print This Article

Project managers and those associated with projects typically like to measure things. You use words like tons-per-day; cubic-feet-per-minute; megabits-per-second; and so on. Here is a new one for you. Would you be interested in knowing the team building success potential index (TSPI) of your next project? If so, here is a non-scientific, but very pragmatic, way to predict it.

Project managers and those associated with projects typically like to measure things. You use words like tons-per-day; cubic-feet-per-minute; megabits-per-second; and so on.

Here is a new one for you. Would you be interested in knowing the team building success potential index (TSPI) of your next project? If so,Guest Posting here is a non-scientific, but very pragmatic, way to predict it.

Select a response for each statement that is closest to your true feelings. When you finish, sum your scores, and use the reference table at the end to determine your next project's TSPI.

1 = agree strongly 2 = agree somewhat 3 = disagree somewhat 4 = disagree strongly

1.___ From a project standpoint, there is no useful difference between these phrases: "The work project people do" and "the project people who do the work".

2. ___ Project people who are paid well should be expected to work well.

3.___ The "storming phase" of a project's team development is inevitable.

4.___ Team building facilitators are best used in planning and leading kick-off meetings and being available if a project gets stuck in a development phase.

5. The nature of a project's matrix organization will nearly always cause these typical problems:

a. ____ Team members with little or no project focus.

b. ____ Team members with decreased motivation.

c. ____ Team members with decreased creativity and thinking "outside the box".

d. ____ Project management having to monitor the individual performance of the members.

e. ____ Team members lacking goal alignment with the project's management.

6.___ The different education levels found on a project nearly always lead to communication barriers between members.

7.___ Dissimilar personal values are inherent on a project causing performance to suffer somewhat.

8.___ Technical specialists on a project ought to know how well they are doing and not have to have someone tell them.

9.___ Friction between professional, support, and craft employees is embedded in projects because of their diverse backgrounds.

10.___ Project "success" means the client is satisfied and we got paid.

11.___ You can do things the way you always have and still expect different results.

Your TSPI is the total of scores on questions 1-10 = _________.

Score of 14-21 = There is little potential for enduring project team building success over the life of the project. Your projects will have difficulty getting out of the forming stage and once into "storming", it will never really subside. There will always be an undercurrent of dissention regardless of how it appears on the surface.

There may be some evidence of "norming" and "performing" in isolated pockets but it will not be consistent through the entire project. It will be very difficult for you to consider any team building process that differs in any respect to what your past experience has been.

The closer your score is to 14, the greater the likelihood any projects you manage in the future will be no more successful than any you have had in the past. You probably tell the facilitator how much time they can have, what you want on the agenda, and then second-guess them as they try to provide the service you want. It is unlikely facilitators are eager to do more than one project with you. Think about this: how would (or do) you like the client telling you how to run the project even though they are paying you to do it? You can bet the facilitator feels the same way!

Score of 22-28 = A score in this range indicates you have more willingness than the 14-21 group to consider there may be better ways to approach the use of a project facilitator. There may have been enough situations in your past project experience for you to consider alternatives to the traditional process (see the 14-21 group comments above), but it will be difficult for you to actually do it because old habits are hard to break.

Although your project's potential for successful team building is still low, there is hope if you will consider giving the facilitator your "scope" of desired team building outcomes like the client gives you in the project scope. Tell them as specifically as you can "what" you want delivered because of their efforts and let them figure out the "how". This takes a little of the project load off of your shoulders and allows them to use their specialized skills. Your answer to question 11 means a lot in this case. We discuss your answer later.

Score of 29-42 = Scores in this range indicate one of two probabilities. You are:

a. New to project management and have not had time to bury your open-mindedness in the concrete of "the-way-we-have-always-done-it" or,

b. Your projects have been so painful you are willing to try anything that may bring relief.

Either one does not matter as much as that you find a facilitator who can answer this question to your satisfaction, ""How, specifically, would you design a team building process for the duration of our project that would make team members want to work together on another project as soon as possible?"

Score 43-56 = Scores in this range suggest a high probability of successful team building on your project because many of your answers were "3" or "4". This means you disagree with much of the conventional wisdom about project team characteristics. A score in this range also means you are somewhat of a maverick in the PM world because you realize the path to a successful project is through the hearts of the team members: not through their heads. You understand their heads tell them what their job is but their hearts tell them why they should care about doing more than just enough to get by.

Your selection of a facilitator is more focused on a strategy to help team members develop professionally and personally while on your project instead of just doing what they are paid to do.

Your project team building success potential is the highest of all --congratulations!

Note: There is a glimmer of hope for you if your score was less than 28 only if you answered question 11 with a 3 or 4! This indicates you are sane enough to realize that expectations of different results require different ways of doing things. If you answered with a 1 or a 2, you also fail when making New Year's resolutions because you do not seem to realize that you can't do things the way you always have and expect different results!

Source: Free Guest Posting Articles from ArticlesFactory.com

About Article Author

Richard Grimes
Richard Grimes

Richard ("Dick") Grimes uses his 30+ years experience in training and operations management for private and public organizations as a foundation for his company, Outsource Training.biz LLC (http://www.outsourcetraining.biz).

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