How do you define the difference between “” and “hip”?

Some folks say that managers focus on doing things right, while are focused on doing the right things. And managers try to accomplish a goal with the resources at their disposal, while go looking for new goals, and acquire new resources to support them.  Right? Right.

Well, we sure do hear a lot about project “” these days, don’t we? Since projects have become so important in every facet of business, I think it’s great to see companies training people how to use project tools and niques. And certification programs, especially those from PMI, are now required for many project . And I think that’s great, too. Really.

But who leads projects? When, where, and how do we train s to be ful as project ? Unfortunately, the answer is that most s learn about project hip the hard way, through experience. And in the words of folk singer Gamble Rogers, “Experience is what you get when you didn’t get what you really wanted.”

That’s a shame, because project hip is a discipline that can be taught. And the cost of learning through study is a bargain compared to the cost of learning through failure. For the student, and especially for their employer!

A leader is responsible for sponsoring projects that will deliver value for their organization. And the key to doing this consistently is to focus on six simple principles that are easy to remember using the acronym DIRECT:

  • Define the vision
  • Investigate the options
  • Resolve to a course of action
  • Execute the plan
  • Change the and es
  • Transition the people

I call this model the “DIRECT Project hip Framework” and it’s a great way to remember the most important responsibilities of a project leader. If a project team is addressing each of these elements effectively, then the odds are really good that they will be ful.

The DIRECT Framework is also a great tool for diagnosing the chges facing a project, and prescribing appropriate s, which is where  project tools and niques come in. A leader can ask themselves questions like, “Did we clearly define the vision?” “Have we thoroughly investigated our options?” And if the answer to any of these questions is “no” then you can draw on the tools in your project toolkit to get ahead of a problem before it puts your project – and your team – in jeopardy.

Project is useful, but project hip is critical. Effective project hip is all about being DIRECT. If you remember these six principles  and apply them to your projects, I guarantee that you and your teams will be more ful!


Daniel Stanton is a supply chain and project leader with a passion for high-performing talent and teams.  Energized by tackling complex chges and implementing innovative s. This article was first published on Linkedin.

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