Through working within a project management office I have come to recognize something which I probably have done most of my life, but never realized it was anything more than my need for preparation and planning. My husband thinks I overthink things and plan too much; however, I have told him that he needs to see some of the project managers in my office at work; then he would realize I am not so crazy after all, in fact I am quite normal!
When planning anything, (a wedding, the purchase of a home or even planning to start a family) we have identified goals in mind: What outcome do we want? When is the target date? What is the budget? Who else needs to be involved? How will we work around the “what if’s”? Sometimes there are unforeseeable things which may affect the process we plan to follow in order to attain our goal, but if we have back-up plans we learn to work around these issues and are still able to succeed.
I have come to recognize the necessity of sharing the love of planning with my oldest son who is now a freshman in high school. With his honors classes, soccer team responsibilities, as well as his busy social like, he has become rather forgetful. Twice in the past three weeks, he has forgotten his student id. When this happens, the consequence (Risk) is that he will not get to eat lunch, since his lunch account it directly tied to his student id. My recommendation (Mitigation plan) to him is to place his id in the same location every evening so that he does not forget it. I then suggested a back-up plan (Contingency plan) in case he still forgets the student id, which is to always have five dollars in his phone case, so he has the option of purchasing lunch with cash. These days, I think if anything is attached to his phone, he won’t lose it, since it is basically an appendage to his body.
The verdict is out on his ability to implement, or at minimum suggest, an alternative mitigation and contingency plan; however I do believe he will become more aware of his ability to work through situations when they arise.