How we manage time – A dilemma
You are an account executive of a company that builds and delivers cement factories for clients around the world. You have been given the task to prepare a presentation for a potential new client in a public tender process. It is evidently complex task so it requires tight management and for everyone on the bid team to work in the same direction. As usual in such a situation there are time constraints which put even more pressure on your shoulders. You are managing the bid team of 8 people consisting of engineers, project managers, finance people and HR people.
At the first meeting in the bid team you present a very detailed plan for the bid process with tasks and deadlines for every member of the team. Your plan is so detailed and thought through that it is just to press the “Start” button and you will be done well before the deadline 20 days from now.
A week later you have noticed that some team members report to you as you expected and they finish their tasks as expected while others are totally silent. Actually you have just learned that one of the key members, a senior engineer, who is one of the most experienced in the company just went off for a prolonged week-end holiday. He hasn’t reported back to you even once.
The following wednesday when he is back you call him and tell him you miss his reporting on the bid process. He tells you that he doesn’t like your micro management and he does his tasks when he is motivated and he tells you that he has never missed a deadline.
You find it very hard to absorb that statement. If we don’t plan ahead we might be too late. You call him again and tell him that you are the project manager and that if he is doing his part at the last moment the quality will probably be to low.
He hang up and doesn’t answer your call again.
- What went wrong there?
- How would you have approached the situation?
- What will an intelligent cultural reconciliation look like?
- Think about how we manage time in different situations
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