about how certain investments in internet technology assets, fail to achieve goals
Error can lead us to failure. These stories are about foresee and afterwards avoid errors in terms of project management and SDLC (Software Development Life-Cycle), for a broad spectrum of IT development.
Why would you choose to read a so to say “negative” story, a story about what is wrong and how not to do it, if you can easy find a lot of articles to tell you rather how to do it from the beginning?
- Because we humans are hard coded to learn easier from our failures than we do from successes.
Well, even if the title says “Algorithms of Fail”, it is not a story about how to fail; failure may be a step backwards, but what comes with it, is a journey of experience gaining and furthermore objective analytical development -which our mind needs in order to do better. And this is important. A human being learn easily from errors and on the other side, the same animal face great challenges trying to learn from the success of others.
We all know there is no standardized recipe for success in no field and at no level. If it had been so, we would all read “The Book of Great Success”, apply it`s directions to the word, and everything would be already in place.
STORY 1. How can we fail to see the objective reality when setting project goals?
Every particular project, some would say, should start with sound and well justified goals. This is correct, nothing to argue so far.
Further, it`s about how do we understand to approach the goal setting phase of the project and about aligning goals to objective reality, not to our own subjective one. If we will not be able to find a good approach, pieces could be somehow misplaced in the puzzle.
My subjective reality vs. objective reality
In some cases, projects lack in market research (by “market” we hereby understand generic target audiences). The danger in that is the following: our goals can be spotless and well driven by our own reasoning, but this is just our own subjective reality driven by our subjective reasoning.
Is our reasoning system enough to take in consideration for setting a successful project goal? It depends on many factors. Generally, I would say NO. Why? I believe my reasoning system is as subjective as I am. If for example, I need to set goals for a project that will be used by myself only, then YES my reasoning power can be sufficient because the target audience (myself) shares the same values in terms of project goals. In the end of the day, in order to be successful, any IT asset needs to serve the target audience, in the proportion we forecast that in our business plan or SDLC (Software Development Life-Cycle). If the product will be not useful for my target audience, even if the asset will work perfectly, it is a fiasco. Not useful, obsolete, whatsoever…
Another example. Imagine a company developing an app. that helps you to find your car in a huge mall`s parking lot. The goal of the app. is clear — it finds the car using precise GPS coordinates. The goal can be logically understood. Coding algorithms may be great. The sponsors may push big figures. So the project starts & runs and in no time, it`s ready for GO-2-market.
Question: How many of you will download and use this app.? (not to mention paying for it) I assume very few of us will even download it. And why? Because the human animal is gifted with enough natural orientation senses and abilities in order to find cars in parking lots, even when we speak about huge ones. So, we do not need an app. in this matter. We can use our senses of sight and orientation to quiet easily achieve this goal without the help of an app.
Sources of error
And where did we fail? We failed in the process of analyzing requirements objectively and setting project goals in an objective way. If we fail here, strategies and politics of implementation can be perfect, but still useless.
We failed in analyzing the target audience. Our subjective reasoning system failed to answer correctly the “WHY?” question. Our subjective reality is not necessary the same with the objective reality. We failed to ask the “WHY?” question before “HOW?”.
We all saw well done projects technically speaking, but considered being fails, because by the time they were done, they were already obsolete. Good research and analysis of requirements, help us to bring up the objective reality we have to face. Why do we fail in these matter? Maybe because of our lack of experience, maybe because of lack in our competences. It happens to humans. Maybe we will get the chance to do it again, or maybe not. The most important thing is to understand, to evolve, change the humor and do it better.
And why do we fail again? Because the customer very much wanted to it “his way”? Step in, change customer`s mindset with a different approach. Stop trying to make the boss happy. You`re not a slave.
Answers can be diverse and excuses can be credible. But in the end, it doesn`t matter. Only results matter. Explore objective realities. “The universe is extremely willing to play with you, if you will.”
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Alexandru Pop @ Dental Marketing
dental marketing evangelist
+40 770 360 998
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