According to the Oxford English Dictionary, Perspective is “a particular attitude towards something; a way to think about something”. I think in perspective as a matter of location between the observer and the observed object. When we change the position of the observer or the object, the perspective about it also changes automatically.
Applied to the business world this definition also brings great advantages to the project manager and leaders in general. It helps us to gain a new vision about the projects and problems we face daily and is also a good tool to stimulate our creativity and critical thinking.
Cinda Voegtli wrote a great article about this subject. An excerpt:
By looking at things through multiple lenses, I reduce the chance that I’ll miss something and am able to head lots of problems off at the pass. And you’ll see below that the answers I get from the different lenses often involve overlap – different lenses will identify some of the same risks, or planning items, or communication needs. But that’s a good thing, because it raises my confidence that I really am looking thoroughly at the whole picture, even though I’m moving fast.
One of the best ways to practice the change of perspective is to engage in the “what-if” game. For example, “If we do this, how will our customers respond? What will our superiors think? What impact will this have on our projects? What if there is something we have not considered?” This exercise will help to demonstrate the viability of your strategic decisions and should always be performed before you move then forward. Try to do it sometimes!