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Nontraditional Ways to Get Feedback for Lessons Learned

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When capturing lessons learned, feedback can come from anywhere. Don't dismiss comments because of how you receive them.
Consider that you may want to receive feedback from the quality assurance manager who's always on the run. Talking on a mobile phone while he or she is driving from site to site may be illegal, though.

Or consider the database administrator who transitioned off your project in phase one, who no longer has security access to the project, and is now busy on her next project.

So how do you get their feedback?

It isn't easy to reach out and receive the lessons your stakeholders may want or need to share toward improving the next project.
These two unconventional communication methods can be used to help in lessons learned:
  • Try a text or Twitter message. Texts and social media aren't only for the younger generation. But to use them, you must to be concise. You may ask your stakeholders to drop a quick message and provide more detail later when they may have more time. 

  • Host a blog site. Start by setting up categories to receive feedback on particular areas of the project, for instance. Using the categories will allow a better way to coordinate the comments, and give the stakeholders a fast way to respond.
In lieu of attending an in-person project review, receiving lessons learned material by other traditional methods could work as well. Contact a stakeholder by e-mail. Dial the person on the telephone. No matter what, reach out for feedback.
How do you identify stakeholders on your projects and get feedback for lessons learned?


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One of the hardest things businesses ever do is lessons learned - most of the documents around this should be entitled "lessons to be learned."

The challenge is how do you in practice transfer anything in a meaningful manner from group to group or person to person. Not a simple task and nowhere near as simple as many "texts" would have us believe.

Of course if you'd collected the lessons learned during the running project in a timely manner you wouldn't need to try track down the missing people to get their inputs.

Institute a simple and robust LL process that looks at unexpected events immediately and you will both save time at the end of the project and really start embedding a learning attitude in the organisation.

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