Subjective: based on or influenced by personal feelings, tastes, or opinions.
Objective: observable; able to be seen or proven; based on fact.
My wife and I got into a bit of a debate the other day on subjectivity vs. objectivity. It centered on the Ebola virus and when you’re symptom free vs. showing symptoms. Since certain symptoms aren’t so black and white like vomiting vs. fatigue, I say symptom-free is subjective. She said that I’m using the term wrong. I’m going to objectively say she’s wrong, but please don’t tell her that I said that.
What this got me thinking about is subjective vs. objective thinking and decision making on our projects. This can be the project manager making decisions, the customer making decisions, and/or the team making decisions. Actually, it can be any of a number of other stakeholders making decisions or helping to make decisions or participating in the project in any influential way. We hope everyone is acting – for the most part – objectively. We always hope for that. But we know that is not often the case…many have their own agenda to push or pursue on the project and will work to influence some key project decision making from time to time. The expectation, however, is that the project manager will maintain their integrity and work only objectively to provide the client with a workable solution that everyone can live with. Sounds easy? No worries there. No huge burden to carry. No?!? …didn’t think so. Because it’s not easy when so many may be working against you at any given time on the project....