Either because the client wasn’t clear, or your team didn’t perform, you end up behind the eight-ball looking to rescue a project that’s already behind budget with a possibility of a disappointed client.
You might feel like you need to put in some extra time or get the team to work extra hard on something realizing that you might not get paid for it.
That’s not fun; I’m not feeling energized or excited about that work. I’m stressed, under the gun, and resentful!
How can I transform this into something I’m thrilled to work on?
For many of us, we’d buckle down and muscle through, burn the midnight oil and get it done. In my experience, that’s not going to lead to any creative breakthroughs or make the client relationship any better. And there’s a real chance that it’s going to end with me resenting my team and the client!
But if we stop and look for some other ways…
- What if I approach this as a time to experiment and try something new. Sure, I’m not going to get great margins on this, but what could I learn?
- Could I try out some different resources on this? Who might bring a fresh perspective?
- What’s a different way to accomplish this goal that will thrill the client. Something we haven’t even thought of before?
- How can I up the level of collaboration with the client? How could I bring them into the process more?
I’m sure you’ve got much better ideas than these. The point is, digging in, working harder with the same process you always use on a project already underwater might not be the way to achieve your team’s best work.
How could we reframe the problem to take a frustrating, unprofitable situation and make it into something you and your team would be excited to work on?