If you don’t get your requirements right – you’re fired!

About the author

Ann is a co-founder of PR Academy. Her special areas of interest are internal communication, change management and project communication. MSc, Dip CAM, MCIPR

I was running our project management course today with our good friend and project management whiz Mary McKinlay.  One of the things that we cover is requirements – i.e. the importance of making sure you are very clear about what your customer wants, or of course what you want from your supplier.

Mary uses the example of a little boy who wants a bike for Christmas but whose face falls when he opens his present because his parents have got him a blue one and he wanted a red one.

Well, it occurred to me that we have  new case study to use from now on – Lord Sugar. Last week on The Apprentice he asked his potential business partners to go forth and buy stuff as cheaply as possible. On the list was an anatomical skeleton. The clever (in my view ) apprentice found a paper one which was of course very cheap but he was fired for his lateral thinking. I wasn’t alone in thinking this was wrong – it was the view on Twitter and a Radio Times poll.

The fault here was clearly with Sugar who didn’t get his requirements right and not to admit that sent out a very misleading message for anyone in business or working on a project.

And that’s why Lord Sugar will now be featuring on our project management course !