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Green on the outside, Red on the inside
I read the term “Watermelon Status” on‘s newsletter and it immediately struck a note. Do we not all know watermelon statuses?
A Watermelon Status is like a watermelon:
Green on the Outside, Red on the Inside.
You've probably encountered a watermelon status without realizing it. It occurs when team members or colleagues report a project as "green" or "on track" when, in fact, things are far from okay. This discrepancy often stems from various fears:
Fear of upsetting superiors or colleagues.
Fear of damaging their professional reputation.
Fear of job security.
Fear of confrontation and reprimand.
Reporting a project (or project item) as green when it's really red doesn't help anyone. It can exacerbate problems, delay solutions, and ultimately hurt the project's success.
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As product managers, project managers and engineers, it's critical that we watch out for watermelon statuses in our projects and teams. Promoting open and honest communication is key. By addressing these discrepancies and fostering a culture of transparency, we can
Improve project visibility.
Improve risk management.
Foster a stronger sense of team unity.
The Bottom Line
Watermelon status may be a term you've just come across, but it's a concept we've all encountered in our professional journeys. Let's be vigilant and proactive in identifying and correcting these discrepancies. In doing so, we can create a more transparent and successful project management environment for everyone.
The newsletter Ageling on Agile, which I highly recommend:
The blog post in which I read about the term:
What I read
This is separate section of this newsletter. I will list some of the best articles I read on the internet. They may or may not be related to the topic of this article. I will keep a list of the best articles (currently >700) at https://www.digital-product-management.com. These are today’s picks:
Dear Executive...: How to get executives and other functions to understand the complexities of product management.
Job Stories: Job stories are especially used in an agile environment, where one of the key values is responding to change over following a plan.
Product Management Competencies: An exhaustive list of product management skills.