top of page

Initial Design - Too Many People, Q&A, And Siloed Input


Picture a bustling project team room filled with individuals from different departments and teams. Each person brings their unique perspective, goals, and objectives to the table, creating a sense of excitement and eagerness to contribute. However, amidst this buzzing energy, there is a palpable feeling of chaos and a distinct lack of direction.

In these situations, it's crucial to recognize that any CRM implementation's success hinges on aligning and harmonizing the efforts of diverse teams. 

While enthusiasm is commendable, the project can quickly veer off course (foreshadowing) without a clear direction, leading to unmet expectations and wasted resources.



Stakeholders advocated their goals passionately, and each was convinced that their perspective was the key to success. This clash of priorities leads to frequent disagreements and delays in decision-making, impeding progress and threatening the project's timeline.

During these situations, I have witnessed how adamant stakeholders can be about their goals, which often results in struggles to reach a consensus with others. Each stakeholder argues their case, convinced that their objectives and strategies are best for the organization. While reflective of a desire to make meaningful contributions to the project's success, these impassioned debates can create an impasse that halts progress and diminishes the chances of achieving desired outcomes.

In my years of experience leading CRM implementation projects, I have encountered numerous situations where a collaborative environment can, paradoxically, hinder the progress of a project.

As discussions unfold within this collaborative environment, conflicting priorities and differing opinions inevitably emerge. 



It's a common pitfall that can quickly derail even the most well-intentioned initiatives. As deadlines were missed and key deliverables were constantly delayed, progress toward the finish line became painfully sluggish. The lack of coordination and alignment significantly hampered the project's ability to move forward effectively, resulting in frustration that started to build among team members.

One of the biggest lessons I've learned from this experience is the importance of having clear goals and a shared vision for the project from the beginning. It may sound obvious, but it's surprising how often this crucial step is overlooked. By clearly defining what needs to be achieved and ensuring that all stakeholders are on the same page, teams can work towards a common objective, fostering collaboration and minimizing self-interest.

Another critical factor in avoiding these pitfalls is fostering open communication and regular checkpoints. Establishing a culture where team members feel comfortable speaking up and providing updates can significantly reduce the chances of misalignment and costly delays. By holding regular meetings and encouraging cross-team collaboration, potential conflicts or misunderstandings can be identified and resolved early on, preventing them from escalating into significant roadblocks.

While it may seem tempting to dive right into a project without taking the time to plan and align, the consequences can be severe. The project may stumble and meander, wasting valuable time and resources. So, as you embark on your projects, I cannot stress enough the importance of due diligence and meticulous planning. Take the time to establish clear goals, foster open communication, and continuously evaluate progress. By doing so, you'll be better positioned to overcome obstacles and guide your team toward success.


Lessons Learned:

To navigate such challenges, it is crucial to establish a structured decision-making process that allows for the open exchange of ideas while also maintaining focus and progress. Designating an apparent decision-making authority, such as a project lead or an executive sponsor, helps streamline discussions and resolve conflicts when consensus proves elusive. This individual, leveraging their expertise and authority, can help guide the team toward productive decision-making and ensure the project remains on track.

In addition, actively fostering an environment of respectful communication and collaboration is paramount. Encouraging stakeholders to listen to one another, empathize with differing perspectives, and find common ground can help create synergy and enable progress even amidst conflicting goals. Facilitating discussions that address concerns, explore options, and seek compromise allows the team to move forward, pooling their collective knowledge and experience toward a unified vision.

I cannot stress enough the importance of managing stakeholder expectations from the outset. It is crucial to involve stakeholders in the early stages of the project, ensuring their input is heard and integrated into the project plan. This involvement helps foster a sense of ownership and shared responsibility, reducing the likelihood of conflicting goals arising later in the project.

In conclusion, I have learned through experience that a collaborative environment, while beneficial, can create challenges when too many stakeholders with conflicting goals are involved in CRM implementation projects. To overcome these obstacles, it is essential to establish a structured decision-making process, designate an apparent decision-making authority, foster open communication and collaboration, and actively manage stakeholder expectations. By doing so, organizations can pave the way toward successful CRM implementation, leveraging the collective expertise of stakeholders and overcoming obstacles that hinder progress.

Establish clear project objectives; Defining and communicating the project's goals and objectives from the outset is crucial. This ensures that all team members understand what needs to be achieved and helps align their goals with the bigger picture.

Encourage collaboration and open communication; Foster an environment where team members feel comfortable openly discussing their goals, concerns, and ideas. Encourage active listening and create channels for effective communication to facilitate collaboration and prevent misunderstandings.

Embrace Agile methodology; Agile methodologies like Scrum or Kanban promote iterative and flexible project management approaches. By breaking the project into smaller, manageable tasks and implementing regular review and feedback cycles, teams can adapt to changing circumstances and deliver value incrementally.


What Should Have Been Done Differently:

To avoid finding yourself in a situation where too many people with too many goals hinder project completion, specific steps could have been taken:


Create a dedicated project leadership team; Establish a small, cross-functional team responsible for guiding the project, setting priorities, and making critical decisions. This team should represent different stakeholders and have the authority to align goals and resolve conflicts.

Perform stakeholder analysis and engagement; Identify key stakeholders and their objectives early in the project. Engage with them to understand their needs, manage their expectations, and ensure their goals align with the project's objectives.

Implement Agile project management practices; Agile methodologies provide benefits such as increased adaptability, faster feedback loops, and regular course correction. These practices, including sprint-based planning and regular retrospectives, would enable better collaboration and help manage conflicting goals.


By taking these proactive measures and implementing Agile methodology, teams can better manage multiple goals, facilitate effective coordination, and increase the project's chances of reaching the finish line successfully.


* * *




bottom of page