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Navigating Uncertainty Within Projects

Navigating Uncertainty Within Projects

When it comes to managing construction projects, we often rely on processes, timelines, and management tools to keep us on track. And rightfully so. They help teams align, provide direction, and aid in mutual goal achievement.

Projects inherently also have components that are out of our daily control. Aspects such as team member change and turnover, environmental factors and weather conditions, supply issues and material costs, as well as technology and how AI will influence the way we work are a few of them. This type of uncertainty can raise questions that may loom in the back of your mind from time to time.

They serve as risks and contribute to the complexity and long-term impact of the project. These dynamic and ever-changing faucets pose a threat when navigating the entire project lifecycle, starting from the design stage to construction up to the final completion.

Because we live in times where change is not only constant, but also compounding, this can be stressful for teams, impact personal well- being as well as how they connect to the Project over time.

We are living in times where change is coming from different directions all at once or one after the other. Learning how to manage it is one of the most important skills one can have today.

As a leader, you are aware that change is also essential for innovation, creative solutioning, building a growth mindset and ultimate success. So how can we best prepare for these changes? What can we begin embracing? And where does the resistance show up?

Below are 3 Steps in Navigating Uncertainty and Embracing Change:

1. Reflect and take notice.

This requires creating space to focus specifically on areas where change appears. Drill down on it and understand it at the root level as it could be different from project to project and person to person. This will allow you to see where excitement, opportunity or even fear show up. Setting this as a specific Agenda topic or creating focused meetings and conversations with the team can help normalize situations that may otherwise appear as a shock or surprise. Lean in and begin building a bridge towards them step by step, so the overwhelming effect can be minimized.

2. Experiment through innovative thinking.

Intentionally encourage and recognize team members who think out of the box and push the envelope. Create platforms and opportunities for them to experiment with new approaches, possibilities and leverage best practices from past projects. Setup “Think Tanks” to move through risks through experimentation and situation analysis with the aim of bringing different project teams, levels, and ideas to the table. This is where collaboration, sharing and learning from each other heighten. It also sets a new level and benchmark for future projects, builds camaraderie, and negates complacency.

3. Partner early.

The best thing you can do for your project is Partner at Kick-Off stage. This allows for a preventive approach rather than reactive. You are able to dialogue around issues, uncertainty, and potential risks ongoing so they stay on your radar and can be addressed timely. Moreover, Partnering cements relationships and bond formation, creates opportunities for ongoing support and helps you in digesting thoughts and feelings when change feels overwhelming and heavy.

Partnering can no longer be looked at as a specification for the Project you are managing. It serves an immense opportunity for problem-solving, joint solutioning and nurturing winning teams

You get to invest in yourself and each other, while working towards Award-winning projects everyone can take pride in.

Partnering is smart business that honors humanity.

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