Three Measures of Work

When we set out on a new assignment, whether its a simple project or a long-term engagement where the end is uncertain, we always aim for the best outcome. However there are usually times when we have to reconfirm expectations and reconnect with reality. There are three measures of work that clients invariably will demand be true of the outcome:

  1. Quality
  2. Cheap
  3. Fast

The problem with these is you can never have all three at the same time. Maybe you can get two of these measures in from the same perspective of the final outcome:

  1. Quality & Cheap won’t be Fast
  2. Fast & Quality won’t be Cheap
  3. Cheap & Fast won’t be Quality

So how do we reconcile the role that expectations play in engagements measured by these contrarian elements? I believe its the same approach a chef takes to the preparation of a meal. That’s how we manage expectations, by getting this unavoidable rule out in the open from the get go.

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