The B of ABCDE – Build
In A, the Aim section of ABCDE you nailed your plan. You agreed what good looks like and your hypothesis made sure you’ll know when you’ve arrived at ‘good’.
You’re now ready to enter the build phase of your project. It’s time to turn that vision in to reality and design something to solve your ‘why.’
In Build, you’ll cover:
- how to manage that plan
- making sure your team stay on track
- dealing with the unexpected and any threats to your plan
Even with the best plans, in our experience, something always comes along to disrupt them. That’s life. But it’s how you deal with it that’s important.
Controlling the build will make sure you deliver your why, stops cost and time spiralling out of control, and will keep your Sponsor happy.
This isn’t admin, this is true delivery in action.
Watch and learn…
Stage 1 – Create
Create is about turning the hypothesis in to an end product.
What do you need to satisfy the why?
In your hypothesis you super charged your idea/need/want to get clear on where you need to get to.
In Create you’ll make sure the team design a solution to that idea. You’ll build it, test it and stay close to the delivery throughout.
An MVP (minimum viable product) can help you work out whether or not a response in stages will work for your sponsor. It’s a great way to deliver value sooner, instead of waiting for the big finish.
And the process itself really encourages teamwork and makes sure there are no surprises at the end, because you’ll have gradually built and shared results with your Sponsor throughout. It gives you a chance to improve as you go and get users/customers involved early.
Stage 2 – Manage
Time to lead with a purpose and charge your inner control freak!
This is where you can get a bit smug and pat yourself on the back for all the work you did at the start to get clear on ‘why’ and to build a decent plan.
You set it up, you ‘own’ your stuff and this plan is your baby.
That’s why you’re a Project Manager.
Manage shows you:
- How to stay on top of stuff
- Best ways to keep the Sponsor informed and keep them honest
- Reviewing the why
- Managing threats and problems
- Produce concise, meaningful reporting
All of these helps move your project along at the desired pace and in a way that controls costs.
We talk about a ‘Goldilocks’ governance and reporting. Not too much, not too little, just the right amount. Then we can also explore what to do when people change their mind and how to manage it.
Stage 3 – Control
“The only constant in life is change”
Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water someone goes and changes their mind.
Not only can this happen, it almost certainly will happen.
As the project progresses, the stakeholders will learn more, and thoughts and feelings will evolve. A bit of change is natural.
But like everything in life, it’s not what comes your way but how you deal with it that counts.
This is where you dig out your trusty ‘why’ again and assess that request simply and objectively so that your stakeholders can make a well-informed decision
Keep it simple. Get the facts, get your decision and stay in control.