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Hello everyone. Welcome to the 5 Minutes Podcast. This week I was reading a book, and I had a very nice insight. basically, it's an analogy, and the analogy is talking about how we think about transition and how we think about our project life. Because most of the time, I don't know, maybe it's because of society, maybe it's because of our own beliefs, we always think that things are easier than they really are and that the results are much better than they really are. And in the book, Technology as a Service Playbook. I was reading this week from Thomas Law and GB Wood, and it talks about technology, but it's so similar to what we see in the project management environment, and it has the concept of swallowing the fish. And this is a concept that is very common in software as a service. When you transition from selling CDs or selling the software to subscription, for example, what happens is that usually when you make this transition, you lose revenue for a moment, and you increase expenditures for a moment. And when you plot this, imagine the x-axis time and the Y is, I would say, revenue or expenses. If it's revenue, what do we see? It's like a parable facing up. Okay, facing up. The revenue starts to decline, and then it increases again. On the other side, there is another parable facing down. This is the expenditure.
Your current expenditures are lower than they go up, and then they go down at the end of the transition. When you put these two drawings together, it looks like a fish. Okay, It has a meaning. And I would say the visual aspect of a fish, this graph, and the concept is swallow the fish. If you want to transition, you need to be able to swallow this fish. You need to be able to survive this painful moment where the challenges are much higher than the benefits. And this is the analogy I want to use because when I was reading that, I said, Wow, this is so similar to the projects we do. First, there is no simple project. There is no. If the project is simple, you are not managing it. It's a self-managed project. We only have jobs because it's hard. I've said this; I think, a thousand times already. So what happens? You have your current status quo in your pre-project environment. Maybe it's not very bad, but it's not very good. But usually, it's stable means you have something. People are used to doing that. For example, imagine before and after digital transformation, before your processes are not efficient. But people are doing that for many years, so people know the routine that they need to do. It's maybe a cumbersome process, but you know, people are used to that.
They do that for many years, and then you start the digital transformation, you start saying, Look, we were thinking about doing this way; now we are doing it differently. We are thinking about selling music on a CD. Now we'll move to subscriptions like Spotify, or we are planning to sell this, but we are now renting this. What happens in the first moment? Your expenditures, effort risks, stress problems, and challenges will increase, and at the same time, what is the awful thing is that the results are not there. So the result will start even decreasing because in the first moment, you spend a lot of money to do the project and, but you don't see any result. It's like you're building a house, you know, you are building a house stress, you know you are having problems with the carpenter, with the painter and this. But you cannot enjoy the house yet because the house is a mess. It's not ready. You cannot use it. It means you do not see any benefit. You only see challenges. This is where you are in the body of the fish means these expenditures are much higher than the benefits. But then, when you reach out to the head of the fish or the end of your project or your transformation, these two curves flipped. And then is when you have the benefit of this transition.
And going back to the analogy of swallowing the fish, we, as project managers, we as someone is sponsoring a project; we are executives at the companies. As a team member, we need to learn that. We need to swallow the fish. There is no such thing as a project that only generates results with no pain. This doesn't exist at all. If you find any of this, please let me know because I'm doing this for many, many years, and I never found it. Okay. You find different fishes. Some of them are much tougher to swallow than others. But all of them come with this challenge. If you were doing an MBA course, you need to swallow the fish because for everything you need to do the exams, you need to do your end of the course work and this, and then you have the benefit. Then you have the benefit of having an MBA or a course or a degree or a certification. You need to be able to swallow the fish. When we see agile methods MVPs, what we are trying with that is to, I would say, slice the fish in a little bit smaller portions to not be so undigested for us to swallow, but we need to swallow anyway. Sometimes the piece will be bigger or the piece will be smaller. But what is The sad thing is that many people, when they swallow the fish, they are not prepared to take this.
I would say this indigestion, this challenge. And what happens? They throw the fish away. They just throw the fish away. And what happens? They only remain with the pain of indigestion, but no benefit of having the fish inside your body as a nutrient. And this analogy is something really important for you to explain to other people that before you know you reach, I would say, the sunny sky. Maybe you need to overcome some clouds. And this is the concept of swallowing the fish. And it's a concept, of course, is not my concept, but it's so helpful concept. If we want to explain to someone why doing a project is so hard. Because, in the beginning, the challenges are far bigger than the results. And sometimes, it takes time for you to see the results. But you need to believe to see the results. Many technology companies face a lot of losses, losses, losses until they flip that until they flip that. And many of them just gave up before that. And then they just had the bad side of swallowing the fish, but no result so far. Think always about that. When you were doing your project, think this is a very important concept for all of us to be aware of. Hope you enjoyed this podcast. You will next week with another 5 Minutes Podcast.