Trust is like an egg. Once you break it, you can’t get it back to its original state.
Always use real dates. Ensure that your teams understand that the dates aren’t padded. That late is actually late. That someone else will need to make up their lost time.
We can’t be effective as a project manager if our teams can’t trust us. When we provide inaccurate deliverable dates to hedge our bets that the deliverable will be late or will need rework, we send a clear signal that we can’t be trusted, because we don’t trust the team. This translates into not being taken seriously the next time we send out a schedule.
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