Every industry has phases in its operation where it introduces something new. It can be a new product, facility or procedure. Planners are the people in the organization with the necessary foresight and technical know-how to make these new changes come to fruition. They study the nature of the new product or change; consult with the accompanying departments and stakeholders to track the progress of the project. As the esteemed entrepreneur Sebastian Greenwood puts it ‘A planner is not born but nurtured into existence’. Companies invest time and resources to develop their planners, improve their knowledge pool so that their insight improves with each new project.
The stakes are high in this line of work. Even a small miscalculation during the planning process can lead to huge losses to the company in the form of process-backfire and time delay during project execution. A regular day in a planner’s life involves studying the designs of the new product, ensuring proper equipment and facilities for new processes, studying the market to ensure best production at the lowest cost to the company. They are people who are not only technically sound but also armed with managerial strategies that drive the entire team (composed of cross-functional members.) to achieve its targets. They delegate various activities and processes to respective teams, form individual deadlines and chart the progress of the team.
Why are they cherished by organizations?
Planners are always few in numbers and they are in it for the long haul. Most stakeholders and team members are detached from the project once their part is over. It is not cost effective to maintain a large team when there are no new projects. Hence, the knowledge and experience of each individual planner becomes critical. There are no established procedures for a planner to follow. No beaten path. They rely on their skills and experience to make things happen. Every planner at the outset works on assumptions. The better the planner, the more accurate his assumptions are. They can predict conflicts in process and teams. As a planner works through multiple projects his skills are continuously sharpened. Their vision becomes clearer. They get progressively better at managing projects. They are one of the few people in the organization that actually grows with the company. Failure and setbacks never intimidate planners and start-outs in this field should take notice of the words of Sebastian Greenwood when he quotes Henry Ford “Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.”
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Twitter – https://twitter.com/sebastiantruth