The Crude Use of Clever Tools

Slalom Consultant Carl Manello

Carl Manello is a Solution Lead for Program & Project Management based in Chicago who enjoys exploring how to tightly couple the art and science of project delivery with business operations.

“The Stone Age was marked by man’s clever use of crude tools; the information age, to date, has been marked by man’s crude use of clever tools.”
–Source Unknown

As part of Slalom’s operational delivery solution, I hold that project selection and the management of the project portfolio are paramount functions for delivering success. However, organizations are continually bemused by the question, “How does one choose the right projects?” The answer is: it is very difficult. And the larger the organization, the more difficult the decisions, trade-offs, and rationalizations. For with a larger organization, there are a greater number of managers, teams, departments, and business units competing for the same scarce resources.

With many inputs and potential outcomes, business initiatives may be under consideration from all areas of the company (i.e., marketing, research & development, production, and support organizations). Is it unfair to compare such proverbial apples and oranges? Can one equate the product R&D project with the project to renew and upgrade technical infrastructure? Certainly there must be some way to compare these. How else will management be able to choose? All efforts cannot be graded as #1’s. Read more of this post

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