Failing to convince my boss taught me how to break silos in a large organization
Back in 2012, I was working as a technical project manager with multidisciplinary teams (hardware, software and mechanical). I had to write a lot of interface control documents to help them coordinate actions.
10 other project managers were also writing these documents
But each one of them was using different conventions.
I had come up with a great way to specify requirements shared among the teams. Yet, I failed to convince my boss to implement my idea for all projects. Another standard had been in place for years.
I was so convinced I had a better solution, I started to talk to anyone who would listen to me.
Here comes the quality assurance team, the one team hating changes at all costs.
I presented my idea, insisting on the issues I was solving. I had been talking to people about this for a month so I was way better at pitching the benefits. They listened to me.
A few weeks later, my boss came to me asking my opinion on this new standard the quality assurance team had proposed.
He had forgotten I was the one behind it.
Talking to people who suffer the most about the issue you solve accomplishes wonders.
After this, I completely changed my mind about the role of the quality assurance team and other support functions.
Don’t give up on your idea / tool / methodology that can help your organization.
Identify who you are helping and how they can help you.
Talk about it.