I recently had a chance to join a Kickoff meeting of a very interesting BI project.
Normally stakeholders and key players are invited to join such meetings as they share an interest in the outcome of the project.
Stakeholders also bring a unique value to the project, especially in the beginning, aligning together to support it to get off to a good start.
For most projects, the core group of stakeholders are generally identified by the business function in which they are associated and information used. Therefore, the motivation is more operations relate; e.g. transactions, reporting and process compliance and so on.
For BI projects, this can be quite different. They typically attract much larger range of interests because BI projects integrate data and analytics across many business functions, especially when they also form part of enterprise performance management initiatives. That makes them high profile and dynamic to manage as so often top, bottom and middle expectations may not start out to all be the same.
High-End BI projects especially that also involve Finance, Operations and key Distribution aspects usually also involve wider levels of management interest. Stakeholders motivation may tend to be more complex too; being both tactical and strategic as they serve knowledge to workers, line managers, middle management and executives.
In one of the slides that showed stakeholders, as the professional project managers, we asked if there was anyone missing from the team. The CEO who had been invited to kick off the project jumped in and said “Me!! I’m missing, make sure I’m in it.”
His motive was ensuring the business was focused and did not get distracted on non value add issues. It was a coup for our kick off as people realized this project was serious.
With that sort of support the project is sure to be interesting, not to mention challenging. But to be sure with the top level involvement it is sure to be successful.
Sensible use of data and information when distilled in a well used BI environment joins all the dots and thereby removes the divisions of complexity. BI provides monitoring, analysis and forward looking capability that empowers decision making and growth to end-owners performance. This is not possible in transactions, reporting and compliance systems. but also not worth doing unless it has strong top level championed support.
Keeping BI project stakeholders happy is definitely an interesting and rewarding job when you can get it right!