No one wants to be the bearer of bad news, especially as a project manager.  Who wants to deal with the hassle of frustrated employees, realigning expectations, and keeping morale up?  But when bad news rears its ugly head, you should let the team know as soon as possible.  Here’s why:

  • You can readjust project milestones sooner.  One of your job responsibilities is goal setting.  You can’t do that effectively if you don’t let the team know why things are shifting.
  • People are going to find eventually anyway.  Delaying delivery of this news only makes it harder with each passing day.  Plus, the dread of anticipating telling the bad news will raise your stress levels.
  • The team might be able to help you find better solutions.  The old saying “two heads are better than one” applies to problem solving.  Letting your team know bad news sooner could result in a brainstorming sessions where you come up with better ideas on how to manage negative consequences.
  • Your job is to get stuff done.  So get it done.

- Deborah Fike


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