Liaison with the Management Team
Talking to the managers at your firm takes another level of conversation. These discussions will be one on one at most times, since getting a group of higher level employees in one place at one time is tough. If it is an overhead or non client billable time –it will be even tougher.
So these talks need to happen off the cuff, on short durations and be focused. Do not trouble managers with unclear issues. If you have to talk with them make sure that you know the short version of your side of the conversation. Lay it out for them in short order. Get to the point. Get their input and end the meeting.
If you need to communicate via a written process, do not expect that they have read and understood what you have discussed. These people are busy and may not have the time to read your documents. Give them executive summaries at the beginning of long documents. This will let them know if they need to read the rest.
Expect them to come to a decision quickly. Slow them down if you think that they did not give it enough time. If they do not have the time now, then revisit the conversation later. Breaking up long topics is okay as long as you engage them consistently. Don’t let time lag in between – they may not recall the prior conversation without a recap.
What Topics do I discuss with management?
You might ask… what do I need to be talking to them about. Here is my quick catagories. Things that cost money, impact project delivery and impact time.
Cost Impacts – these are the things that will cost money to get done or will take money away from other areas. These may be software purchases, hardware issues, licensing maintenance, outside assistance and consultants and delays in software purchases.
Project Impacts – these are the things that will impact the project and the deliverables. CAD Standards have impacts on project as they seek to comply with the standard and get the job out the door. When you change the CAD Standard – it impacts projects. When you create something new – it impacts projects. Check in with the managers to see what they think.
Time Impacts – CAD Standards impact time to be in compliance. A Standard improved interoffice productivity, but managers may sometimes feel that they get in the way. Striking a balance between making the Standard work and getting the project out the door should be a time for talking to the manager.
Keep these conversations flowing. Go talk to them before they come complaining to you.