As followers of the blog will be aware, jobs are being discarded like confetti in my organisation. My team will survive this round of cuts if half go. You can imagine that it's like accepting an invitation to a buffet at the Roman Forum on the Ides of March!
'Performance' is key to survival, that is, be SEEN to be achieving.
So, you can understand that I've been a little distracted over the last week or so whilst I race to bring in my current efficiencies project stage on schedule, and I've done it! PHEW!
In addition I've managed to reduce the requirements for 13.7 man years of Full Time Equivalent (FTE) resources to just 3.1. The Project Sponsor and stakeholders are over the moon. Again, PHEW!
Unexpectedly I won public approval from senior managers and private praise from my colleagues on Tuesday for taking a lead in a diffcult efficiencies workshop. Luckily (sic) I had come to the workshop with a considered and structured strategy for delivering this particular efficiency workstream across the organisation. The workshop facilitator called in sick and I was able to step into the breach.
There is a big HOWEVER! In order to 'achieve', I've had to ignore our reporting mechanisms. Maybe a tactical mistake. You see it's more important to show highly developed plans and write reports than to actually do the project i.e. "be SEEN to be achieving".
I have to report on my activities daily, to do this I have a seperate electronic timesheet, that needs to be completed during the day - when I get to work, go to lunch, come back from lunch and sign out at night. Keep this parked somewhere, I'll come back to it.
For each project I need to create a detailed project plan in MS Project. Only, my stakeholders don't have MS Project and you can't copy and paste from Project into Excel. So, I have to print it out and recreate in Excel for my Project Board and Stakeholders. Once done I upload as a file into a project management and reporting system - but of course, this project reporting system needs to have the whole project plan recreated in it's own format with an emphasis this time on milestones. All of this needs to be updated as the project progresses.
Also, yes there's an also, I HAVE to use a system that accounts for my time and planned allocation of activities, currently up to August 2010. So, once again I have to recreate my project plan, this time adding in my personal details and day to day demands like annual leave, flexi-time (a thing of the past), visits to dentist, union activities, team and non-chargeable internal meetings. But you can't undo mistakes and can't change estimated timeframes to actual timeframes.
I copy and paste the details from my electronic timesheet into an excel spreadsheet and from there transpose it into this system. It's a mess, even I can't follow it.
It's all absolutely barking mad!
Got that off my chest!