Dean, a project manager, was conducting a project post-mortem with Tania, his VP.
“Why the month slip, Dean?” Tania asked.
“Well,” Dean started, “we didn’t get on the vendor’s calendar early enough for integration testing. They couldn’t schedule us in when they needed us, so we had to slip.”
Tania shook her head. “Hold on, Dean. The vendor is Conset, right?”
“If I remember correctly, we did a project with them last year and the same thing happened; we didn’t get on their calendar early enough and it caused a slip. Were you aware of that?”
“I specifically asked the project team to include that in the lessons learned. If I recall, Tarun was the PM. Did you talk with Tarun or look at his lessons learned?”
Dean looked down. “Um, no.”
Tania kept her gaze. “Honestly, what good are lessons learned if we don’t bother to use them? This was clearly avoidable.”
“I’ll make sure to document this for the next time, Tania,” Dean said.
“Do you look at lessons learned from other projects?” Tania asked.
“Well, not really, they’re all over the place and in different formats. It’s kind of like finding a needle in a haystack.”
“Unbelievable. We’re willing to make the same mistake over and over and not bother to learn from past mistakes. What a waste.”
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