So how much documentation does a project need?
I find that a lot of times when you say to a Programme Director that you need to create a Change, Communications and Training strategy, then Communications, Training, Coaching, Resistance Management and Sponsor plans, they baulk and ask why. Even when you have created them and logged them with the PMO, who reads them? When you talk to the senior management on a transformation programme they would generally be hard pressed to remember seeing the documents, nevermind remembering their content…
People only really notice the tangible i.e. the communications going out or the training taking place.
So why do we do it? Why do we spend weeks formulating strategies and plans that no-one looks at?
The simple answer is to ensure that we have a roadmap of the why, when, which, who, where and we have something to back up the reasons for the actions taking place.
However, does every project within a transformation programme need its own strategy? The answer would be no. The overarching Change strategy should cover the whole programme particularly when you have carried out the analysis on the rational, the organisation, stakeholders and lessons learned. The overarching Communications strategy should cover all of the programme they will be only one version of the truth. The overarching Training strategy will cover when training is required and the methodology used.
However, each project will need it own plans, stakeholder mapping and specific messaging and training, because this is the how and without these no-one is going anywhere.