Separating Deliverables from Effort - Part III - Why Working Together is Superior than Working By Yourself

This is part three of a four part series that dives into the operating model of separating deliverables from effort, and how PS teams can benefit from greater collaboration and accountability using this model. The four parts are:
  1. Separating Deliverables from Effort - How to Eliminate "Tossing Over of the Fence" Mentality
  2. Separating Deliverables from Effort - An Example in Real Life
  3. Separating Deliverables from Effort - Keys to Making It Work
  4. Separating Deliverables from Effort - Why it's Worth It

Separating deliverables from effort requires one person on a team is uniquely responsible for the deliverable, but everyone on the team participates in the effort to craft that deliverable. This operating model only works if there's a team, and everyone in the team plays the position they're good at. From experience, operating in this model yields a number of unique benefits:

Decrease context switching, increased focus - Because accountability for deliverables is uniquely assigned to the role that makes the most sense, everyone on their team gains greater focus on their core competency. Solutioners focus on delivering great solutions, planners focus on making great delivery plans, executors focus on getting tactical and supports focus on ensuring customer success. 

Diversity of voices, wider perspectives - Now that a deliverable isn't just developed by one person, but by a team with different perspectives, the deliverable gains the wisdom of additional voices that otherwise would be missed. We found that solutioners got a whole new appreciation for timelines and schedules, planners get the full breadth of a solution, executors understand why they're building something and supporters have full information on supporting the entire deliverable.

Sharing knowledge, strengthening resiliency - With the team working as a unit and participating as a team, they are all intimately knowledgeable on each other's tasks, progress, and deliverables. Should someone need to take time off, or need some additional help to alleviate capacity issues, anyone on the team can jump in without having to "ramp up" on account context.

Cross training, levelling up skills and empathy - Training across different roles allows for team members to get a taste of the mindset required for responsibilities of the different roles of the team. Team members still looking for the right fit will benefit from the variety that is cross training, and those who are on a specific growth path will gain greater empathy for the other roles in the team. It's a great way for people to explore lateral moves, or be validated in their own role.

The benefits are real, but it takes a lot of work and effort to implement and maintain this operating model. The conclusion of this series will explore what this additional effort will look like.