P-Logs for Project Teams [1]….

P-Logs for Project Teams. Here’s my Proposal for a P-Log (Project Weblog) Specification.

Why the Interest in Weblogs?
I’ve been curious about the role blogging could play on projects. In October I did a posting Project Klogs: Changing Paradigms on John Udell’s view of weblogs for projects. Udell claimed our tools and practices don’t attend to the story of the project.

Projects fail. This is the usual case. We all know this. Attempts by the PMI to address this have not succeeded. It’s time for something completely different.

Why A Specification?
We’ve been designing and redesigning the same collaboration tools for years. Ten years ago I used an early Lotus Notes database for project management. Back then and today the collaboration environments do the same things: provide status, track issues, and discussion. We can do those things with a p-log. But there are three critical issues that need attention that haven’t got attention:

  1. Uncertainty – the future unfolds influenced by actions of the team and the world that is unfolding around the team. Planning is the conversation for participating in the infolding.
  2. Learning – the vast majority of knowledge is tacit. Projects are one-of-a-kind opportunities to share, deepen, innovate, …
  3. Mood of the team – enthusiasm beats complacency, cooperation beats (internal) competition, determination beats resignation, and wonder beats arrogance. Yet, when mood is left unaddressed we get what we get.
P-logs are about the story of the project and the team. P-logs are for the team to take charge of the conversation of the project.

What’s Next?
Perhaps this is too ambitious. Perhaps nothing short of audacious ambition will get at the underlying sources of project failure. I propose we do this together. How about a project conducted with a weblog for developing the p-log? (Thanks Joe for the proposal.) In the next few days I’ll write about aspects of the p-log specification. Please join in with your comments and questions, suggestions and criticisms, and offers to build and use a prototype p-log.
[Reforming Project Management]