Topic Teasers Vol. 89: Chasing the Shifting Target

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I’ve just been asked to begin to document how my projects and those of three fellow project managers meet the company’s strategic objectives. That’s not really part of what I do at work right now, so I’m embarrassed to admit I understand the term, but have no idea how to prepare what management is expecting. To be honest, that seems a little fuzzy and I prefer to deal with facts and figures. What shall I do?

A. Strategic objectives are marketing magic created to convince stakeholders that an organization is doing well. They are not important to a project manager or a project team, and if assigned you should quickly refuse their care and maintenance. Otherwise, when the company reports do not look good, you will be blamed.

B. While many project managers are familiar with a company having strategic objectives, and even a lucky few are allowed to know what they are for the assigned projects, not many realize that tracking them is very much a numbers game that is well within the skill sets and abilities of most of us.

C. Only the sales team has access to the numbers you would need to create strategic objective reports for upper management. They can manipulate sales numbers to make them look good, so the VP of Sales …

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