We Are Triumphant Despite _____________!!

As project and program managers, we frequently face adversity. It can come from the team, management, stakeholders, and outside the company. It’s everywhere!

Because you’re also leading one of the company’s initiatives, you need to be triumphant despite those adversities that are thrown in your path. It’s our job to take issues in stride and move forward.

I was reminded this week of a huge white board a former co-worker had outside her cube. She had the phrase, “We Are Triumphant Despite…” on it with ample dry erase markers. Team members were encouraged to put anything they wanted on the board. Why were we triumphant? What roadblocks did we overcome?

I honestly never saw anyone write on the board, but over time words and phrases showed up (team members stealthily added them when no one was looking). At team meetings, she would discuss what they overcame. As the project progressed, more items were added and by the time the initiative was implemented, the board was full!

I would frequently stop by and read what people added. Some were eye opening. A few were funny. Others pulled at the heart. They included topics like:

  • Too much scope change
  • Not enough team members
  • Too many of the wrong team members
  • Lack of cake at the last team lunch
  • Office politics and managerial in-fighting
  • Who picked that go-live date
  • Someone quit
  • Why was this person let go
  • Ineffective sponsor
  • More happy hours
  • Office politics
  • Crappy vendor
  • Death in the family
  • Struggling with personal issues
  • Thank you for helping me when I had issues

Every project will present its own unique challenges. But with each challenge, you have the opportunity to overcome and be triumphant! What are some of the issues you’ve triumphed over? Write them down, talk about them, and be proud you and your team were successful!

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