Sixtieth excerpt from 'Twelve Towers': Human Resource Plan

The next day the team assembled and men started to demolish the corner of the palace where the tower was to be situated while others pulled down the rest of the palace and stacked up the stones for later use. Daylight revealed the beauty of the mosaic. Gwilym made a decision to try and rescue as much of this as possible for later use on the tower or for sale to other people. “We may need the extra money for unforeseen circumstances on this tower build.” Gwilym walked around with the calendar, checking off who was working and who was due to come tomorrow for laying out the foundations. He checked the way the crew were doing their jobs and made judgments on their level of various skills. Then he and Fred sat down at an easel with a blank sheet of paper and the network diagram showing all the activities and who was responsible for each and created a new document. “Let’s call this our ‘Human Resource Plan,’ Fred.”

“We’ll list all the roles we have to fill for doing this project: Project Manager, Foreman, Sawyer, Mason, Foundation Man, Laborer, Carpenter, Quarryman, Road-builder. Then we list the names of all the men who fill those roles for us. Some can be used in two or more roles.”

After they had done that, Gwilym took out another sheet of paper. “Some of the men were too happy day before yesterday volunteering for activities. We need to show this in a better way than just their names on activities in the network diagram. I think we’ll get some warning of their overuse if we plot the activities against the people.”

Fred took a large sheet of paper, and wrote the names of the crew on the vertical axis. On the x axis he wrote the names of all the activities. Where they intersected he placed a letter R next to the person who volunteered to take responsibility for that activity. He placed a letter I if the person was involved with the activity. With Gwilym calling out the activities and Fred writing, they were soon finished.

Responsibility Matrix

“Let’s add the role of the crew below their names so we can see which roles are overloaded,” said Gwilym. On doing so they saw that the foundation men seemed overloaded at first, then the masons, then the carpenters. That made some sense based on the nature of the work.


To read the entire first draft in one shot, click here: