You’ve already said it. PROJECT.
That says three things…
1. They have old-fashioned ideas. They haven’t moved on from Lean, Six Sigma and Time and Motion studies where a guru came in and changed everything in a few weeks, then left everyone else stuck with a system they didn’t want and fighting to sort out the mess after he’d gone.
2. They don’t understand Process. Processes have to continually evolve. A competitive advantage one day is “what everyone does” the next. And customer expectations are continually changing. Fixing it as a snapshot in time is certain to leave you lagging behind.
3. They think they know best. People have been struggling with this broken process for years. Suddenly management wants you to come in and create something different – something they wouldn’t let the people do for themselves. What sort of message does that send to their people? And if they aren’t engaged, what hope of making a good process everyone works to make happen?
Management doesn’t work in “projects”. Management is continuous, flexible, evolving.