Cowshed Projects - Better projects and profit from flexible project management
Most of these blogs are about project management and how it can help you, but there is no point in talking it up where it can’t be. So I’ll just get on with it, project management can’t increase turnover. Sales, production, design, marketing probably some more things I can’t think of, these are the direct influences on turnover. Bring it in, send it out. This is where the glamour and importance is! Right?
Management, finance, HR is there then to facilitate the process of filling in the blanks between bringing it in and sending it out. None of these functions are a standalone business without a product or something someone wants. These are the boring bits! Right?
The saying goes turnover is vanity, profit is sanity, or you can get in as much work as you want but if you are spending more to get it out the other end, you’re not deemed a successful company and you won’t be around for long!
There are a few reasons you may want to not care about being profitable, but for the purpose of this, let’s talk about the basic commercial benefit from a project …. to make some money …. so we can enjoy spending it on something else.
If we are all in this to make some money, the more we make the more we can spend and have more fun, now or in the future. We can do perceived good things or bad things with that money, not my position to judge, but without it you aren’t buying owt, no one’s having fun!
So how do you make the profit as large as possible?
Let’s look at the variables. Cost, quality and time..
Cost, this is very quantifiable and relatively easy to control in advance.
Quality, a bit less quantifiable but very subjective and controlled by the cost, which can be controlled in advance.
Time, this is extremely variable, both in: subjectivity and how it can be measured in advance.
The key to using time well is management, management doesn’t produce anything but it facilitates it. Better or quicker …. and time is a strange thing, you can’t use it again, once it’s gone … puff …. its gone! If you don’t use it, it will use itself, its head strong like that, time is always consuming itself. Once consumed it won’t come back and therefore to the business a massive ongoing risk. It’s a leaking bucket.
So to do fun things, we need to make a profit, the profit comes not from having a viable product or contract but from getting that product out the door for less than it came in for.
Cost and quality are generally closed cases from the start, we only have time left to control.
Better profit is ultimately about time …… sales, production, marketing et al are where the glamour is. Management is about producing the results, to have some fun. The better the results the more fun we can have!
Some of us are lucky, we have double the fun enjoying managing and the results of profit, we don’t care for the glamour, that’s for Instagram.
But here’s a thing … you can still get double the fun even if you don’t like managing!!
Be boring, concentrate on getting your management better … because if you do it well … time can be doubled and the fun can be doubled!
Here’s how…. If you make something with the resources you have and it takes 6 hours it takes 6 hours. That is having experience and knowledge of what you are producing, to improve it you could introduce some machine that makes it quicker, there is a cost.
If you have 6 hours to manage a task it could take 6 hours. If you have the experience and knowledge. To make that quicker you could introduce a consistent tailorable process, become more management mature and it’s free!
Once you understand management, you understand how to influences how quick you can make something, by getting the information quicker or clearer, making sure the order is right or knowing who is doing what.
And in lies the magic. If you make things quicker you save money by not using the time, but you also have that unused time to do something else with. You double the profit on not using that time!
Use it to make something else … or …. use that time to gain more experience and knowledge to make the work even quicker, allow time to learn!
So to get double the profits, concentrate on the management, concentrate on being boring and we’ll all have much more fun!
I'd love to hear your views, experiences and comments and if you're interested in finding out more, drop me a line.
Thanks for reading
Hi I'm Simon. I've worked in projects for a while now, either management or design. I love projects but they're frustrating. Hope some of this help you.