Have you ever went into a store and were blatantly ignored? You wanted quality service but instead the worker only cared about his task at hand or his personal issues. This is very frustrating! Have you ever done the same thing to a user of your product or service? It is very easy to lose focus of the customer while doing the work or even during project management.
Project management possesses a very high level of responsibility and requires constant multi-tasking. All too often our focus shifts to the deadline or the current roadblock that we are facing. Having this determination is a great motivator. The problem is that you become willing to do whatever it takes to get there and often the user’s (customer) needs are ignored. Example: I hired a guy to do landscaping at my house and gave him a detailed plan of the plants I wanted and where they were to be placed. He could not get a certain plant I wanted so bought a different one so he could finish the job on-time.
This landscaper’s tunnel vision made him completely forget what I (the user of his services) wanted. What results from this form of project management? Disgruntled customers, bad reputation, not fulfilling the contract, etc. These results can be very easily sidestepped by simply putting yourself in the user’s shoes. Think about how you would want to be treated. By simply practicing the Golden Rule, you are less likely to have an upset customer.
This term is defined in the 3rd edition of the PMBOK but not in the 4th.