On Deliverables Or: The Absurdity Of Not Providing A Date

There is no excuse not to have a date for your work. You can go back three iterations (only three without being absurd) but a date can and should be stated. If you are providing work to someone else or vice versa, in my mind here are the only acceptable responses when asked when the work can be expected to be delivered:

  1. Preferred: Date when you will get the deliverable to the person who needs it
  2. Good: A date when you will get back to the person to tell them when the deliverable will be delivered​
  3. Worst (but still better than nothing): A date when you will get back to the person with the date when you can tell them when the deliverable will be delivered.

An example of the worst one: I need to check in with Dorothy on how long the task will take, so I will get back to you by Monday with the expected date of the report you need.

I cannot see why anyone would not be able to at least provide the worst date, and yet this is accepted a lot in corporations. Dragging “deadlines”, effort and money along with it.

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Originally published at www.meetimeapps.com.