Workflow Definition and Golf: Beating Estimates


Workflow Definition and Golf: Beating EstimatesI enjoy the game of golf despite not being very good at it.  Due to circumstances and connections, I had the fantastic experience of being a caddy for a professional golfer during a tournament.  During the round, he asked me what I did for a living.  After some conversation about my background as a managed services consultant, he looked at me and said “We have a lot in common in that we are both trying to beat estimates”.  He then went on to point out that golf was the only sport that provided everyone with an estimate… par.  It became a joke for the rest of the round as we tried to determine how to beat the “estimate” at each hole.

Much like calculating par in a round of golf, workflow definition is a disciplined estimation approach that incorporates checks and balances to verify and validate the expectations that are supported by customized estimation models and the quality of work being performed.

Although the workflow definition process requires a slightly different thought process, the customized approach is based on a simple foundation:

1)       All roles require something from someone else to do their work

2)       Resources within roles perform similar tasks (ties back to my motto: “Repeatability breeds Predictability”)

3)       Similar roles will create similar outputs.

The workflow definition process is proven to significantly improve organizational maturity by increasing efficiency and establishing baselines for monitoring content, timely delivery and quality.

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