The Illusion of Agreement

“…two people could hear the same piece of information, verbally agree, but have very different mental images of what is being discussed.”

The first obvious consequence is lost time. Most projects do not have that luxury. There’s always that looming deadline threatening to take your life when you close your eyes to sleep at night. And so you don’t. You don’t want to find out after all the sleepless nights that you have to start again. There’s also the issue of sunk cost, which is money, and in some cases, materials that have gone into the project and can never be recovered. It could be a real pain especially when your team is on a tight budget.

1. Start every project with a scope of work

The importance of a well written scope of work (SOW) cannot be overstated. It helps to ensure everybody involved in a project is on the same page and that they all share the same understanding of the relevant details. Another day I’ll write on how to craft a mean scope of work but two important things to note here are goals and omissions.

2. Use sketches when communicating your ideas

This is a meeting best practice to aid effective communication, whether virtually or in-person. This is because sometimes, even clearly written words can still be interpreted by different parties in different ways. Ideas are an abstract thing, but once there is a sketch, a wireframe, a low fidelity prototype, it becomes a lot more tangible. In the words of Jonathan Ive, Apple’s former Chief Design Officer before his departure in 2019, “Things are exceptionally fragile as an idea — entirely abstract — but once there is an object between us, it is galvanizing.”
There is a reason why designers of all kind — interior decors, engineering design, architects — always refer to a blueprint when working on projects. That way, ideas can be digested quicker and rightly too.

“Things are exceptionally fragile as an idea — entirely abstract — but once there is an object between us, it is galvanizing.” — Jonathan Ive

When the goals for a project are clearly defined and team members take it a step further to communicate their ideas with sketches, it greatly reduces the back-and-forths that are all too common with projects and only then can you achieve your team goals in record time!

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Mosorire Aiyeyemi

Mosorire Aiyeyemi

I write because you should know too. Energy Markets | Cleantech | Strategy