Steering projects, plain sailing?

Ahoy there, fellow project adventurers! Welcome back to another edition of our weeknotes, where we dive into the thrilling world of steering groups. If you’re wondering what these “steering groups” are all about, fret not, because we’re about to set sail on a journey of insights, experiences, and a few anecdotes that’ll make you feel like you’re part of the crew!

Setting Sail

Last week, we kicked off a project, and boy, it’s been quite the adventure! Picture this: a project with multiple moving parts, each requiring a specialized touch. That’s where the “steering group” comes in—a dream team of key stakeholders who steer us towards success. We’ve got senior designs, department heads, and other experts onboard, each with their unique skill set.

Thinking about steering a group these points seem to be what its all about:

  • Define the scope and objectives: Set clear goals and know where you’re headed.
  • Identify key stakeholders: Assemble your dream team with experts from various domains.
  • Establish the steering group: Create a space for regular meetings and decision-making.
  • Set the agenda: Prepare topics and discussions to steer the project forward.
  • Facilitate the meetings: Embrace diverse opinions and ensure smooth discussions.
  • Monitor progress: Keep a close eye on the project’s journey and navigate potential obstacles.
  • Communicate with stakeholders: Keep everyone in the loop, answering questions and addressing concerns.

Is that all? Just something good at the helm?

I keep feeling there’s some missing treasure, some secret to it all, but this really does feel like the essence of projects. When these things aren’t in place, even one or two, often projects crash into the rocks further along.

Every project has its share of challenges, and this new one will be no different (sadly!). This week, we encountered a clash of micro and macro thinkers. It’s been a bit choppy, but with the support and guidance of the steering group, we’re charting a new course to avoid any future storms. I can’t help but reflect on the invaluable role steering groups play in our project’s success. They’re like the wind in our sails, propelling us forward, guiding us when we lose sight of the shore. The people steering seem to make an outsized impact on project outcomes from what I’ve seen through a decade at DEV.

So, if you’re ever embarking on a project voyage, remember to assemble your dream team, and make sure you have good people steering the group. It might not always be smooth sailing, but with the right crew, we can navigate any waters and reach our destination, before starting the next project!

Fair winds and smooth seas to you all!

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