Put People Over Projects

Are you putting projects over people? Please reconsider.

While it is important to plan, to look into projects, programs and processes, it is people who make them work. It is people who bring success. Thus, people should be put first over projects.

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The mistake that organizations make is when they put projects over people. The purpose was forgotten. Projects should serve people not people serving the projects. Projects are made for people. It is for the people and its achievement is made by the people.

How about the processes that are put into place to propel the projects and programs?

When I was working as an accountant, I was involved with various process improvement initiatives. I have seen the need to keep on improving the processes and procedures that companies have in delivering products and services. Through time, processes become obsolete. What was effective and efficient two years ago may not already be functioning as such at the present. It may be effective still at a certain point but no longer efficient. Hence, there should be continuous improvement otherwise the company or organization will be left behind.

However, there would be a great problem if there is so much emphasis on processes and projects that the  people element is forgotten. No matter how you improve processes if the people are not improving, the supposedly wonderful process will be useless. While process improvement is important, people improvement is essential.

This goes back to getting the right people, putting them in the right jobs, and equipping them continuously as appropriate.

I am not saying that we have to choose people over projects. It doesn’t have to be mutually exclusive. But if you are to look into your prioritization matrix, people should be above projects. Put people over projects, processes and programs.

Yes, examine processes, initiate projects, plan programs, deploy new systems, invest in these changes – but before anything else, invest in your people. Invest in their training. Invest in their development. It is they who will make things happen.

If you think the people you have right now are not worth investing, then maybe you are attracting or getting the wrong people.

So, get clear with your values, goals and visions and bring in the right people. Ask them and give them the right seats. Tool them as appropriate. Invest in them. And treat them right.

When you take care of them, the projects, processes and programs will be taken care of by them.

Live your life, young mind!

Chris Dao-anis

(Chris Dao-anis gives talks, trainings and seminars on communication, public speaking and leadership. For inquiries/invitations, email him at chrisdaoanis@gmail.com or drop your message at www.chrispoweracademy.com/bookchris.  His latest book ‘Living Large in the Little Things’ is available at Mt. Cloud Bookshop, Casa Vallejo, Upper Session Road and at Psalms Bookstore (Sunshine Supermart, beside Hotel Veniz) – Baguio City. For more info, visit www.chrispoweracademy.com/livinglarge.)

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