Know Your Constraints

One of my biggest pet peeves in my career has been sitting in a meeting and hearing someone say they have an issue they need coordinated or corrected, only to hear another party say “oh yeah, we knew about that last month”….. #fail

How is one party supposed to know to correct something if the constraint isn’t known!? How are teams, or even ourselves, expected to be successful if we aren’t looking ahead and removing our constraints ahead of time.

BE PROACTIVE – not REactive

In a team setting, a big part of pull planning, or make ready planning, we have to identify our constraints, when they need to be solves and WHO needs to be involved in solving them. The constraints become part of the plan. When they become part of the plan, we can track their progress, delays, needs, and know when they are completed, allowing the next steps to proceed.

In an individual setting, you need to be honest with yourself.
Example: I know that I have to have a course outline completed by June 26. For this, I know I need to decide on a hosting platform, and an outline structure. My big constraint is the expense. I can spend hundreds, or thousands to host a course. Though this decision may not necessarily be part of original plan, if I don’t identify it and list it out as a constraint, I may skip it, forget about it, and fail to plan for it. Failing to plan for it might mean the failure of the entire program if I run out of time.

Constraints are items in your plan that threaten to derail progress if not dealt with within the necessary timeline.

What are some major constraints you have in front of you?

Can you incorporate them into your plan to help streamline progress?

Do you need to bring in our side resources to help solve them?

Reach out if you want a little guidance on constraint identification and remediation, well take a look at how to best outline a path forward.