Sometimes we have objectives that elude us over a long period of time. When this happens, we usually remain unaware of the situation, until by "happenstance" the question arises: "Why haven't I accomplished that?" Here are some of the "answers" that enable continuation of the status quo.
- Something came up and I put everything else on hold.
- I made progress, but then I came to where I didn't know what to do.
- I came to where I had to make a choice, and I couldn't make up my mind.
- I came to where I had to make a choice, and I chose another path, which now seems to be a mistake, but I can't fix it right now.
- I can see how to get something like what I want, but it isn't exactly right, so I'm waiting.
- I found something really interesting to do, and that got me off track, but I'm back now.
- I've had a lot on my plate, but I plan to get moving now.
- I have a lot on my plate right now, but I plan to get moving soon.
- I think I'll be having a lot on my plate soon, but I plan to get moving after that.
- It looks like changes are coming, and I might get what I want without having to do anything, so I'm waiting.
- Somebody needed my help and I had to give her (him) all my attention.
- To make progress, I'd have to give up what I'm doing, and since I like what I'm doing OK, it seems too risky.
- Somebody I respect advised me to give it up.
- Somebody I don't respect advised me to give it up, but since even an idiot can be right once in a while, I gave it up.
- I noticed that someone else is much further along, and it seemed like I would probably lose out, so I gave up.
- I can see how to get
something like what
I want, but it isn't
exactly right, so I'm waitingIt looked like there would be a big obstacle a few months (years) down the road, so I'm waiting to see if I can find a way around.
- I heard there would be a better opportunity someday, so I decided to wait.
- It does look good, but there are some serious problems with it, so I'm going slow.
- They told me it was a done deal, and I had a lock on it, so I waited for the announcement, and then it went to someone else. Now I'm just disgusted.
- If I go for it and I fail, I'll lose credibility and then I'll never be able to get what I want ever again.
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More articles on Personal, Team, and Organizational Effectiveness:
- The Mind Reading Trap
- When we think, "Paul doesn't trust me," we could be fooling ourselves into believing that
we can read his mind. Unless he has directly expressed his distrust, we're just guessing, and we can
reach whatever conclusion we wish, unconstrained by reality. In project management, as anywhere else,
that's a recipe for trouble.
- Organizational Firefighting
- Sometimes companies or projects get into trouble, and "fires" erupt one after another. When
this happens, we say we're in "firefighting" mode. But it's more than a metaphor — we
have a lot to learn from wildland firefighters.
- The Hypothetical Trap
- Politicians know that answering hypothetical questions is dangerous, but it's equally dangerous for
managers and project managers to answer them in the project context. What's the problem? Why should
you be careful of the "What If?"
- How to Foresee the Foreseeable: Recognize Haste
- When trouble arises after we commit to a course of action, we sometimes feel that the trouble was foreseeable.
One technique for foreseeing the foreseeable depends on recognizing haste in the decision-making process.
- Deciding to Change: Trusting
- When organizations change by choice, people who are included in the decision process understand the
issues. Whether they agree with the decision or not, they participate in the decision in some way. But
not everyone is included in the process. What about those who are excluded?
See also Personal, Team, and Organizational Effectiveness for more related articles.
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- And on October 25: Workplace Memes
- Some patterns of workplace society reduce organizational effectiveness in ways that often escape our notice. Here are five examples. Available here and by RSS on October 25.
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