Sharpen your focus with a bird's-eye view

The "50,000-foot view" or birds-eye perspective refers to seeing things from the most expansive view possible. 

When implementing roading and infrastructure programs, our customers regularly need to jump from the 50,000 ft view to the microscopic view of a project (and fast!) - whether it be responding on the fly to a steering group question regarding high-level network performance through to a specific community concern on a granular section of road.  

Bird’s-eye insights that drive results

Whether at 50,000ft or deep in the detail of a project, one thing remains true, human insight is the most valuable diagnostic tool. 

There are a plethora of data sets, excel filters and report views available to us. However, as we attempt to move between the high-level and micro-level project insights - can we get stalled by the sheer volume of information? 

This blog looks at three areas that can help us avoid stalling and instead arm our teams and leaders with the ability to come up with valuable diagnostics, solutions and insights. These are:

  1. Use insight to prioritise your effort - what’s your true burning platform?

  2. Share tailored high-level insights with stakeholder groups - because we’re better together. 

  3. Side-step a common barrier to problem-solving… irrelevant information.

Use insight to prioritise your effort to where it’s needed most.   

Before getting pulled into the detail it’s critical to stay at the 50,000 ft as long as possible before jumping to the microscopic 'street view' of individual projects or challenges. 

It can be tempting to jump straight to assumed priorities and potential issues. However, taking time to step back and confirm what the biggest and most pressing issues are is critical to having a true impact. The reward? Being able to effectively prioritise your effort or delegate to team members where focused problem-solving needs to occur.

A useful way to do this quickly is to leverage a snapshot that is tailored to the metrics you care about the most, deliberately omitting other detail so you don’t get caught either by recency biases. That is when our natural instinct to focus on what’s burning in front of us clouds judgement (to learn more, Terance Teo’s article on How Recency Effect Impacts Decisions is worth a read).  

One way that Mooven helps customers to do this is via our home page, which provides a quick summary of all live projects distilled down to the most important metrics. Whether they be connected projects in a larger program or disparate projects across a territory - the ability to sort sites based on the performance metrics that matter, is critical to prioritising effort.  

Many of the patterns associated with our cities are complex, constantly evolving and difficult to quickly isolate. With this in mind, we have been working on advanced analytics to detect anomalies to further support clarity of what requires critical attention. Watch this space for a product release in the coming months.  

Share tailored high-level insights with stakeholders

As programs of work gather in complexity and the number of stakeholders involved, it’s important to make sure this information is spread in a tailored way to the audience so that it can be used effectively.

Our stakeholders will naturally want to jump to action on issues they see as important but if they are missing the complete picture, this can lead to well intended but ultimately ineffective busy work. 

Like with our individual decision-making, look to share a clear summary of what is happening at the 50,000 ft view in collaborative decision-making first. Stakeholders then have the information at hand to make informed decisions.

If we don’t do this there is a tendency to follow the direction of the Highest Paid Person’s Opinion (HiPPO). While your HiPPO is likely to be well versed in the detail and has excellent experience in fast-moving and complex situations, it’s not possible to have all of the wider information at hand. Leveraging the full experience of the wider team and considering multiple options will support collaborative decision-making.

With an easy way to provide a concise summary of project information, our customers can drive collaboration and work quickly to build trust with critical project stakeholders (see our recent blog on this here).

Side-step a common barrier to problem-solving...irrelevant information

At this point we a) understand what the most pressing issues are and b) harnessed our collective wisdom… but how do we effectively solve the problem? 

Often we don't have the luxury of starting from insight. An issue has arisen and we need to problem-solve quickly to meet the needs of stakeholders, the team or the community.  

One of the biggest barriers to effective problem solving is 'irrelevant information'. This takes its form in many ways and is often a barrier when it results in losing sight of the real problem. 

A classic example of irrelevant information in program delivery is being fixated on trying to model the future based on assumptions. The desire is to create increasingly complex models to understand the future without addressing the underlying gap in the information or potential risks associated with the inputs used. While this can make us feel better it seldom changes our understanding.  

We can side-step this barrier (and the hours of analysis paralysis it can take from us!) by having a summary of focused information that can be sorted quickly by the metrics that matter to your delivery program. Next, it is important to identify your riskiest assumption and then find a way to test this assumption to improve your understand and gain control.

The result? Cancelling out the 'noise' associated with all the factors that may feel important but won’t materially impact delivery, while actively gaining additional information on the factors that will aid effective decision making.  

Changing the face of program delivery 

Moving effectively from 50,000 ft to the micro-level project insights is hard when work is time-bound and problems are urgent. However, Mooven is changing program delivery and has made this easier than ever.

At Mooven we are constantly trying to unlock the ability of our customers to focus quickly and effectively on what matters most, streamline high-level reporting, and avoid the detail and irrelevant information that prevent us from moving forward with ease.

Keen to read more on this topic?  Find out more about how Mooven helps teams to collaborate and share information - both live problem solving and during the draft planning stages of a program, here.


Micah Gabriels, CEO

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