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Tuesday, 11 June 2013 00:00

Lost luggage - Part 1

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Waiting at the luggage carousel in late 1999 in Kathmandu, two bags quickly arrived. The third, with all of my son’s stuff in it, never did. Finding ourselves in Kathmandu for 36 hours, with a 12 year old with no clean clothes when about to fly on to Paro in Bhutan was a bit of a problem.

Nowadays you can buy most things in Bhutan, but those were in the days when there were few cars and no TV in the country. Finding kids trekking clothes would not have been easy. Replacing clothing in Kathmandu is not a problem. T shirts and trousers were not difficult to find, nor were waterproofs (although I was surprised at the answer to my question whether the Gortex jacket was breathable to find – “oh no sir, this is Nepali Gortex”).  My son ended up wearing some seriously funky and badly fitting clothes that holiday. 

The biggest problem was with mundane items that we take for granted - socks and pants. They seemed very hard to find in Kathmandu in those days. Maybe we just didn’t know where to look.

This reflects a common trend on projects. When something goes wrong, sometimes it is those complex special things that you are focussed on and have risk management plans associated with. But on many occasions it is the mundane details – room space, power supplies and building access that really cause the problems and can be time consuming, if not impossible, to solve within project deadlines.  I have learnt to keep my eyes on the mundane as much as the exciting and innovative parts of projects.

Read 33709 times Last modified on Sunday, 29 September 2013 22:11
Richard Newton

Richard Newton wears many hats. Included amongst these are his work as a consultant, author, blogger, change leader, company director, and program manager. His most well known project management book is The Project Manager: Mastering the Art of Delivery. He is also the author of the best-selling Dream It, Do It, Live It which applies project management principles to achieving personal dreams.

His articles and blogs can be followed at www.changinghats.com. Information about his company can be found at www.enixus.co.uk. His books are available at bookshops and online sellers worldwide.

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