We Need to Make Sure

 

“We need to make sure.”

I heard this comment repeatedly from a project manager. Yet she didn’t explain how to make sure. Who was responsible? When would others be accountable? What is the time-frame? Even when asked she just repeated the comment.Employee at Chalkboard

What I believe she really meant was that she was too uncertain to make a decision and had decided to postpone the decision until she emotionally felt better, not until she could methodically evaluate the situation. She also failed, as many do, to realize that a decision to postpone is a decision too, one that often is more costly than the other decision options.

To those around her not paying much attention, the comment likely sounded like something a leader may say as they note the importance of tasks. But without a plan and accountability, it became meaningless management babble.

Uncertainty is normal. Creating a plan to address as much uncertainty as reasonably possible is good business. Using vague statements without a plan is just an action of the fearful, the emotionally paralyzed, and the unprepared.

 


Glenn S. PhillipsGlenn S. Phillips is the author of the book Nerd-to-English: Your Everyday Guide to Translating Your Business, Your Messages, and Yourself.  You can email Glenn directly at glennsphillips@nerdtoenglish.com.

Glenn is also the president of Forte’ Incorporated, a consulting firm that works with business leaders to understand and address the often hidden technology and business risks lurking within their organizations.

© Copyright 2012. Glenn S. Phillips, Forte’ Incorporated. (205) 985-1111

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About the Author

Glenn S. Phillips works with leaders who want to leverage technology and understand risks within. An author and blogger, Glenn is often quoted in national media, plays a really ugly tuba (it even has a bullet hole) and is a fan of dark chocolate and great puns.