Cultural aspects of managing a software Plan of Record

Stanley manages a weekly PORM  (Plan of Record Meeting) where very aggressive software commitments are formalized with developers and project management.

Stanley has discovered that many people view commitments made at the PORM very differently.

Yaniv (Israeli male) believes that planning should be very aggressive and “even 90% success is good enough”. Yaniv’s peers think he is out to impress management and show other people up.

Arabella (German female) believes than planning must be accurate to the extreme because it is the ultimate control device. Arabella asks endless questions and piles on the facts high; her peers think she is stalling and foot dragging because it is very hard to get her to commit.

Jacque (French male) views planning as a logical and “non emotional” exercise. Jacques refuses to “negotiate” deadlines; he analyses things and is seen by his peers as “stubborn and unmovable”.

Tanaka (Japanese male) sees planning as what need to be done by whom in order to satisfy the demands as defined by the customerPeers see Tanaka as detached from reality at times, albeit highly customer focused.

Stanley from Ottawa sees planning as the way to “get us all reading off the same sheet of music.”

It appears however that without digging down into cultural assumptions about planning, Stanley’s band isn’t headed for a Grammy.

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3 thoughts on “Cultural aspects of managing a software Plan of Record

  1. Sounds like (since we talk “music” here) that this is less about “planning” and more about very different perceptions of how important a “commitment” is. For some, myself including, it’s almost a matter of honor to “keep my word” (yes, I am a bit old-fashioned), hence any commitment becomes quite a burden, because it must be met, no matter what. For others it’s just a guideline to follow, if possible, and if not, who cares…

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