Shared commitment among stakeholders is critical to the success of any project. The only way to achieve shared commitment is to ensure that all stakeholders have a clear understanding of the problems being addressed, the desired project outcome and how those project outcomes are to be achieved. To meet all of these ends, stakeholders need a shared understanding of the project.
The diagram below illustrates a common scenario where SharePoint is seen as the means to improve collaboration. Often projects are committed to this basis, but the end state, in really, is a platitude and means very little.
What does improved collaboration actually look like?
The second diagram shows the outcome of projects that are structured to deliver a platitude. Subjectivity among participants means that the meaning of Improved collaboration will depend on who you ask. Now we have not one aspirational future state, but many. We have a multiplicity of views of that desirable future state. We like to call this multiplicity of views "divergence".
The challenge to achieving shared understanding is overcoming the fragmenting forces of divergence. Seven Sigma Business Solutions uses IBIS facilitation methods to help overcome these fragmenting forces to help you and your project stakeholders achieve a shared understanding of the project and a shared commitment to its successful delivery. An important artefact of this method is the issue map which captures the exploration of the problems, their potential solutions and the rationale supporting or opposing each of these solutions. Issue maps provide a means of preserving tacit knowledge, organisational memory and facilitate opportunity driven problem solving which allows the refinement of the problem definition and consequently, improving the potential solutions.