Posted by: kerrywills | February 28, 2014

Process vs Structure


Last week someone referred to me as “A Process Guy” which I sort of took offense to. I pride myself on having an empirical background in managing programs and focusing on items to help drive structure. So I thought about it, and I realized that there is a difference between process and structure. In my view, process refers to a bunch of steps, forms and documents which relate to specific work functions. However, I view structure as those things that drive programs to diligence and transparency in meeting its commitments.

Structure includes things like…

  • Keeping project plans updated
  • Managing financials, resources and vendors
  • Diligent change control approach
  • Diligent reporting and tracking of work

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While many of these items listed have processes involved with them, the focus is on managing the program to meet its commitments. Sometimes processes can get caught up in the steps, forms, documents and meetings and not always help to move things forward. So then I suppose this means that structure focuses on the outcomes, and process focuses on the steps. Hopefully I will be soon seen as “A Structure Guy.”

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