4.7 Project Teamwork Part 2

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I remember once we defined the scope clearly, once we figure out the quality requirements, at that point we can tell people, well it'll cost this much money and take this amount of time to do this. Darryl's going to figure out okay I have to turn this idea, these electronic signals and these chemicals floating around, into some sort of sound. The mother of these boys, John's wife, a very mild mannered woman who just takes care of everybody and keeps all of this four from flying off the edge of the Earth.

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What we’re going to be working in content. Scope, quality, cost and time. I remember once we defined the scope clearly, once we figure out the quality requirements, at that point we can tell people, well it’ll cost this much money and take this amount of time to do this. So this is the content we’ll be working with. Processes. Let’s talk about the processes. So now we know what our content is. What are the processes we work with? Communication. We’ll talk a little bit more about communication in some of the subsequent slides. But in general, every project team has to have a communication plan. We just have to know how we communicate with each other. We have to know who else has to be communicated with. Who do we need to get information from, who do we need to give information to? So communication will be a big piece of working together. And what does that communication look like? What do our processes look like for doing that? Problem solving. We just need to figure out how we solve problems in here, and again, we’ve looked at, in some previous modules, we’ve looked at different decision making styles. Some of that’s going to help us with problem solving. Some of the things that we do will be creative problem solving along the way. So we need to figure how we’re going to create ideas and how we’re going to be creative about things. We also need to manage difficult issues that come up. We have a little grid that will help us with that that we’ll look at soon. And we need to figure how to share responsibility. One of the things we need to do is make hand-offs along the way from one team member to another. So we’ve put a process in place for that. Process in place for that would cause us to not have problems like one team had. One team had, it was a classroom training session. They provided classroom training sessions. They didn’t have very many good processes to make handoffs from one to another. So, what happened was they were putting on a training session and somebody in the group had arranged the room. Somebody in the group had arranged materials. So all the materials were printed. Somebody in the room had arranged for all the participants to be in the training. So on training day the room is set up, the training materials are on the tables, all the people are sitting in their chairs, but along the way there was one dependency line that went from one task box to another on a schedule that said okay, now this leads to getting a trainer. Nobody made the handoff to get the trainer, so now there’s a whole group of people sitting in here, materials sitting there, everybody ready to go. There’s nobody that’s gonna come in and do any of the training for this group. It’s just forgotten. We have to figure out how we’re gonna make handoffs along the way with all these things. We look at our team foundations triangle here again. We find out we put people, remember on the team because of their subject matter expertise. What comes along with them? Their problem-solving skills and their interpersonal skills. So we put people on the project team just based on what they know how to do. We don’t even think about how they’re going to work with others. All of a sudden, we get people on the project team, and now, we as project managers and now, team leaders, because that’s our other role as project manager. Being a team leader, we have to figure out how do we get these people to work together in any kind of reasonable way at all? Everyone brings something to the team. It’s our job to bring all of that out and get the team to work together well. With all of their expertise and all of their interpersonal skills along the way. So everybody brings their skills and their knowledge about the topics. We also have them bring their interpersonal skills as well. When we’re setting those goals for the team, sometimes they’re set for the team, and sometimes the team gets to set them themselves. Either one of those can lead to good project teamwork as long as we have these. We just need to know where we’re going with this project. There are a couple of other things we need to do just as a starting point to give us a good solid foundation for teamwork. One, Clarification of the project. The results, the deliverables. Clarification of the roles. What’s the team leader role? What’s project manager role? What’s the role of the team members? What are the roles of all the people that support this project? What are the roles of the stake holders? What are the roles of the customers in here, What are the roles of the vendors? How do we work with them along the way? Our suppliers, our contractors. How do we work with everybody? Project manager has to bring the team together and manage the team work throughout the project. This is what the project manager is going to be doing all along the way. Duties and responsibilities. The first duty and responsibility that every project team has is do the project. That’s it. Complete all of the project tasks. We have to collaborate, so somehow we’re going to have to work together. You may have seen project teams that all work as individuals, and somehow never share information with each other. Sometimes that’s because they don’t communicate, or sometimes it’s because they don’t communicate well, or they don’t communicate enough, or they don’t communicate about enough things. Showing respect. We need to show respect for each other. I know some things, and you don’t know this, but it doesn’t mean that because I know this one thing and you don’t, that I don’t have any respect for you because you don’t know anything. That’s wrong. Every project team member has some area of expertise. There’s one project team, you can’t really call them a team, it’s a group. And everyone is very proud of their expertise, and they don’t have any respect for anybody else’s expertise. All they can do is point out that well, you don’t know what I know, so you must not be very smart. The projects don’t do very well. The projects are always over budget, their projects are always late, the quality, sometimes, really suffers. They have a real hard time working together. Sharing information, ideas, and opinions. Again, that project team never shares any information, ideas, and opinions. Other project teams do, and they do very well with this. Solving problems. making decisions. All of these are things that we have to do together as a project team. One of the things that will help us do this well is just talking with each other. So first of all we have to talk with each other, we have to say some words, and in that process, we have to listen to each other. When we listen to each other, that also means that we have to understand each other. Do we agree with each other? Maybe we do or maybe we don’t. But through enough discussion we can finally come to some area of agreement. But the first thing we have to do is actually speak with each other, listen to each other, and then understand each other. So there’s a process that we go through with verbal communication that helps us do that. What we’re going to need to do with the communication in the project is to figure out a few things. Who needs to be in our communication loops? I’m a project team member. Who do I need to be communicating with? I need to get some information from some of the team members. I need to give information to some of the team members. They need to work somehow with project manager along the way, there may be some stakeholders they have to work with along the way, communicate back and forth with. Who are all those people? Why do they even need to be in this loop? Probably because they either have information that we need or they have to have information that we have. And how can we keep all of these people informed? What level of detail do they need? How often do they need to be communicated with? What types of information do different people need? Sometimes, you as the team leader are going to have to get information from your team has to come to you and sometimes you’ll have to give information to your team. We’re going to talk about verbal communication. Verbal communication is the starting point for all of our communication and then we can also add charts and graphs and video. We can add some visual things along the way to help with our communication. The verbal communication is the foundation for all of it. We have Darryl and Clyde here who are going to communicate. There are four steps, four steps to verbal communication. And then we will talk about an additional step that we might decide to add into this. First of all, Darryl has an idea. What happens with communication, it all starts with an idea in our head. So we have our project team members sitting around. Everybody has ideas in their head. We have to get those ideas out so that everyone can discuss those and we can work with them together as a team. So get the ideas out. Darryl has this idea in his head, so now he’s going to say some words that convey those ideas. The first thing that Darryl is going to do is encode that idea. That idea originally looks like some chemicals floating around and some little electronic things snapping around in the brain. There’s some little nerve endings sending out some electronic messages in the brain. They were some people who won a Nobel Prize just a few years ago for figuring out what that idea looks like in somebody’s head. Now that idea, in somebody’s head, has to get transmitted to somebody else’s head. It has to get into their brain and it has to be the same idea that gets into their brain. First way we’re going to do that is say some words. We’re going to make some sounds. Darryl’s going to figure out okay I have to turn this idea, these electronic signals and these chemicals floating around, into some sort of sound. What will those sounds be? The encoding process is figuring out the sounds. Then we are going to transmit those sounds. Daryl will transmit those sounds. What does that look like? This is the foundation for all verbal communication for people. You breathe in, you breathe out. When you breathe out, you breathe over those little strings in your throat. [SOUND], you breathe over those. Tighten them up, loosen them up a little bit to get different tones. That air comes up into this cavity you have in your head called a mouth. That air goes up there and starts to bounce around. And in there you’re gonna make different shapes with your tongue to make different shapes inside there for the air to bounce around and whirl around in. And you’re gonna make different shapes with your mouth to make sounds come out differently. So all of that air comes up through there, bounces around in here, your tongue makes different shapes, comes out your mouth. And some kind of sound comes out because of all that. So now that’s the whole transmitting process. So let’s say Darryl decides he’s going to send some kind of a message over here to Clyde. This is what I’m going to say. [FOREIGN] Clyde receives that message. What does that look like? Receiving looks like the air that’s come out of Darryl’s mouth has turned into sound waves in the air. Those sound waves go right into Clyde’s ear, here. Right in there, right in that little hole in the side of his head. And they start to shake a little piece of skin around in there, and that eardrum starts to rattle around and starts to shake some bones around in there. And starts to squirt some chemicals, or some liquid, around in there. Then it starts to rustle some hairs around in there. Then all kind of electronic signals start in the brain here, and chemicals start floating around in Clyde’s brain. He’s received this and what he’s doing now is decoding this. So we hope that Clyde actually even got this message, that the sound waves even got here and got inside so that now Clyde can actually start to decode this. Clyde starts to decode all of this, and then Clyde says, what? When Clyde gets this information and doesn’t understand it, if he doesn’t say anything it’s one way communication. Darryl has encoded, transmitted, Clyde received and decoded. One way communication. When we do one way communication, we send things out, we hope for the best. We’re in a project team. We tell people to go do things, they go off and they do something completely different than what we imagined. We send an email to somebody. Goes out there, they do something completely different than what we wanted them to do. Why? Because they decoded this differently than we meant it to be understood. So, an example of this. Friend of mine, very nice guy John. Wonderful guy, high energy guy. Has three very high energy boys. The four of them together are just wild all the time. They have one woman in that house, Judy. The mother of these boys, John’s wife, a very mild mannered woman who just takes care of everybody and keeps all of this four from flying off the edge of the Earth. They’re having a dinner party. The first guest just arrives at John’s house. Knocks on the door. John opens up the door. And John’s laughing, and the boys are standing there scared. They just had this horrified look on their face. They’re just scared. They’re just frozen in place. John says to this guest, come on in and help me with this. And Johns laughing and his guest says, John, what’s going on here? Just get to work here. This guest also hears Judy in the kitchen slamming around, banging things around out there, and swearing. Very uncharacteristic for Judy. So, this guest looks around and says, okay John, what’s going on here? John says, well here’s what happened. Judy’s getting ready for this party. Party’s almost ready. Judy forgot one thing for one recipe. She says, boys, I have to run down to the store. I have to get one thing for one recipe. If your dad gets home before I get back, tell him I’ll be back in a few minutes She runs down to the store, runs back, opens up the door of the house. These three boys have decided that’s the very best time they could ever think of to throw every single toy they own all over the entire house. The entire house is covered with all of their toys now. So Judy’s a little angry about this. So she says, all right boys, I’m going out in that kitchen. I’m gonna work on this recipe, I’ll be back here in five minutes. When I come back, I don’t wanna see one single toy on the floor of this house. So, she goes back out there, John gets home about now and says, boy this is interesting, what’s going on here. They explain it to him. John starts to laugh about this. Okay, let’s get to work on this. Now Judy comes back and looks around and says, why you little devils. Because once she looks, the boys have put all of the toys on top of the dining room table. They’re all over the chairs, they’re all over the sofa in the living room. They’re all over all the furniture in the entire house. There’s not one single toy on the floor. So Judy’s really angry and now she’s really going to punish the boys severely. And John says, wait a minute. You can’t do that. They did exactly what you told them to do. That’s when you to get really angry. As project managers, sometimes we let people know what we would like them to do, off we go, we come back and if done something completely silly, completely different to what we had expected. Maybe what they did was exactly what we told them to do simply because we didn’t put this extra piece in here where Darryl says, bondia. And Clyde says, what? Because Clyde didn’t understand that. We’ve completed the communication loop with feedback. Feedback is nothing more than the same four steps encode, transmit, receive and decode going backwards. So Clyde says what? And then Darryl says, oh wait, I’ve been travelling. Oh yes, I just got back yesterday. I’m sorry, I forgot where I was at. Oh, yeah, Clyde I’m sorry. I meant good morning, how are you today? I says, you know, I’m doing great. Yeah, how was your trip? It was really good. You know, I had a nice time. Brought some stuff back for the family. I know that you were doing some stuff with your family while I was gone. Had a little vacation. How did that go? We had a great time. We got our pictures. Everybody had a great time. We had canoeing. We. And then some back and forth. We have this conversation going. That completes our feedback loop. That’s the way that now. The person sending the message and the person receiving message, both end up with the same idea in their heads. Now we clearly understand each other. In your project team, people have to talk back and forth. They have to say words back and forth to each other. Not just one person talking and everybody else just sitting there, listening, and you just hope for the best. So if you’re the project leader, the team leader in this project, you need to listen to people as well. We have two ears and one mouth as project managers because we’re supposed to listen twice as much as we speak, at least twice as much. One-way communication, these four steps. Two-way communication, we add feedback to the loop.

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