We got a new dog last week!  Don’t ask why.  We actually swore we would never get another dog as we rolled into this new phase of our lives.  But circumstances have brought us a very young, very cute puppy – a Poochon (Poodle/Bichon cross).

If you have ever owned a dog, you would know what we have facing us over the next few months: puppy training!  There is so much to know and so many rules and guidelines that you have to follow if you want a well-behaved dog.

The key to success?  Well, there are many, but one of the big ones is Clarity.  Just like a project execution plan or a strategy execution plan, at the core, we need clarity. 

On one hand, we need clarity among our stakeholders. Why are we doing this?  What is the plan?  What’s the end goal? What role is each person playing in order to execute the plan? 

Karen and I bought into the vision of a new companion and a welcome addition to our family.  As we have in many projects we take on, we have been sure to define the role each of us will play in the puppy’s training and his routine.  I think we have established Clarity between the two us.

But… one of our daughters has moved back home – and she was a big advocate of this new dog thing.  Karen and I are now asking ourselves if we were really clear that we needed some sacrifices from her to make this work.  We cannot do it on our own. Clarity?  Maybe not here.

On the other hand, we need clarity between ourselves and the puppy. The tone of your voice, the words you use, the rewards you present, what is allowed and what is not.  The puppy is looking for Clarity from us so that he can see the boundaries and become a fun part of our lives.    

Clarity is defined as “clearness or lucidity as to perception or understanding; freedom from indistinctness or ambiguity. the state or quality of being clear or transparent to the eye; pellucidity: the clarity of pure water.”

If you are running a project, program and strategic plan – think about clarity.

Does everyone on the team understand, and do your stakeholders understand:

  1. Why we are doing this?
  2. What this looks like in 1, 3 or 5 years?
  3. Who is doing what – to make it happen?
  4. Who is ultimately in charge?
  5. What the major risks are that we will face?
  6. What will happen if it does not work?

Clarity – one of the key elements to execution success.

Oh, by the way, his name is Boston. 

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