The 2W technique. It is a nice way to manage work if there are chances of knowledge leakage and also subcontracting involved in a project. At least this is what I have learned in the past few days. Subcontracting, a long review process cycle and multiple team interactions are not new to me. These are the attributes of most of my assignments. Since these are not new, I am prepared for all this. What came as a surprise and a learning experience is the intensity of the review process and that is exactly where the 2W technique showed up.
2W is an acronym I coined since the methodology involves two Ws - What and Where. If you cancel the noise out from the chatter i.e. if you summarize the long emails and the everlasting discussions, the review is only about two things namely what and where. What is it that you are trying to do? Where have you documented it? To be truthful, during the excruciating review process whether it is face to face, emails or phone, when the person whose work is being reviewed is finally able to answer the what part, the where part usually makes him/her tongue tied. This is when all the artifacts have to be updated again which leads to another review cycle.
So far, we have seen the picture when sitting at one side of the table. Now let's change seats and cross over to the other side. While subcontracting a piece of work, you are trusting the supplier to the right thing. In some cases, the supplier might not be the one who will be supporting these systems. It could be another supplier or even an in-house team. What will they if they do not know where they can get the knowledge? Now add attrition to these woes. There is no way to take this initiative a success unless the what and the where is clear.
Do you see the importance of 2W technique? Now that I have told you the why, you can proceed to implement the what and where in your real life or projects.