Protect Your Project Team – Part 2: Be Politically Sensible

“So effective politicking has to be as much about give as it is about take. So play the game. Or get left behind. Which are you going to do?”

Dr. Rob Yeung, Talentspace

In the last blog, I asked the question, “How can you use political sensibility to protect the project team from disruption and interference in order to increase effectiveness?”  And, I gave an example of how to be politically sensible.
In this blog, I will detail a procedure for project leaders to use to protect the project team and cultivate political tactics.


1)      Identify who matters (who is important) to you and your project
2)      Determine why they matter (and are important) and how they relate to your project
3)      Find out what’s important to the people who matter to your project
4)      Determine how and when to leverage what you found out

  1. Don’t use a sledge hammer when a hammer will do
  2. Don’t use a hammer when a reward will do
  3. Don’t use a reward when a smile will do


1)      Work with the project team to identify the four most important people who have the ability to cause or prevent disruption and interference to your project. 
2)      Complete a table with information about why they are important, what is important to them, and under what conditions you will use this information



Maintain strong political ties throughout the organization as a method to achieve project success.  Think of the key players, what matters to them, and how you relate to them. Use the information wisely to protect your team from interference and disruption.  Make decisions that will affect the team, based on what’s best for the team. Fight for the team when the team needs it.

Have fun with politics!

James L. Haner

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