territorial about project

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territorial about project

Postby Abby » Wed Jan 23, 2013 12:07 pm

Hi all. Any tips to help deal with feeling territorial about a project? I have been the main person on a project for 5-6 months but another person in my group has been brought in to do some things that might fix it. I'm feeling threatened and left out of the loop. I know I'm just being territorial but still feeling hurt. Anybody been in a similar situation?
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Re: territorial about project

Postby Dave Jensen » Wed Jan 23, 2013 12:44 pm

Hello Abby,

This is something that everyone goes through. I still have problems with this . . . In fact, I would say that this is something that has negatively affected my career.

Employers read this "territorial" thing as an example of not playing with good team spirit. When I take on a new search assignment, for example, I am very territorial about the client and it's "MY project" (emphasis on the MY). That's a problem, because we have 17 global offices, and there are a lot of people who can help me. I have made great strides in improving this, but I know that my opportunities have been affected because I am not seen as the team player by some of my colleagues.

You've got to get past this. You've got to see the benefits that come to you by the synergy of working with others on your area of interest. Will you "lose" something in the process? Probably you will. But the overall gain will outweigh the loss of ownership you feel. Trust me -- it's a difficult lesson to learn,

“The world isn't fair, Calvin."
"I know Dad, but why isn't it ever unfair in my favor?”
― Bill Watterson, The Essential Calvin and Hobbes: A Calvin and Hobbes Treasury
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Re: territorial about project

Postby Rich Lemert » Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:57 pm

I wonder how much of this is inculcated during one's training and education. Grad school in particular seems to be organized along the lines of individual projects, and this probably fosters the feeling of "mine".

Even in engineering we can get "possessive" at times because of this. We do have the benefit, however, of having lots of team projects at the undergraduate level, so that helps prevent some of this possessiveness.
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Re: territorial about project

Postby C.T.N. » Fri Jan 25, 2013 7:43 am

its not unusual to feel territirial about projects. However if you are feeling out of the loop then I would suggest actively working on communication so that rather than being 'left out' you are gaining access to new knowledge.

Can you instigate 'project meetings' so that everyone working on the project is involved? Are you able to work with the new person to learn new techniques/gain new skills?

If you've been working on a project for 6 months then you're going to have 'insider knowledge' that could help with the troubleshooting, so I'd work at finding a way to share your knowledge and position yourself as a central member of the team

you are better off sharing the 'glory' in a successful project than being fully responsible for an unsuccessful one
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