Opening the Closing

Do you ever wish that you had shared those special words before a loved one’s passing and missed it? Have you ever had a relationship where the end is clealy needed and coming, but you don’t? I can definitely place myself in those situations and lament a lack of resolve to deliberately wind down that which was ending.

In my chosen vocation,  this process is a deliberate, calculated effort that requires both planning and execution. In time past, I was involved in a project where we neglected to provide a small, secondary set of deliverables for closing purposes. Closing is one of the five process groups in the PMBOK that deals specifically with the tying up of loose ends on a project. In other words, we want to make sure that tasks are completed,  payments for resources are made, and documentation is updated among other things. Due to poor execution, we were still slowly getting the remaining balance of the aforementioned deliverables to the customer some months after completion and it was difficult to pursue quickly due to communication delays, personnel changes, and reassignment to new responsibilities. This outcome is neither necessary nor desirable.

In contrast,  I am thankful for my mother who urged my two grown sisters and I to visit my paternal grandmother prior to her recent passing. Mom’s actions represent a way to have active, deliberate closure in a relationship and allowed my sisters and I to pay our respects while our grandmother could receive them. As suggested earlier,  we planned our time based upon the constraints at hand. We acted on the plan in the most complete and timely manner possible. It was a special occasion to visit with my grandmother and celebrate eight plus decades of life. This kind of closing is ideal.

Therefore,  I suggest that we heed wisdom with the following steps as we enter work and life:
1) Start planning the closing steps early. Visualize with the end in mind.
2) Be intentional and deliberate in getting there.
3) Take time to assess and celebrate how things went.

Perhaps with this sagesse, we can open doors to new and better adventures.



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