Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Collaboration at the design stage

I can't help but thinking about collaboration every time I take the train at Ypenburg, a relatively new station. The yellow line says "train does not stop along this line". The yellow line is an improvement that was painted only a month ago or so. The first time I took the train at this station, I didn't realize the train stops almost 100 meters further on, would have missed it if the conductor had not allowed me to sit in the 'cockpit' of the train, I was clearly not to first to almost miss the train.

Last week I asked a conductor why the train does not stop at the centre of the station (the obvious place). He replied it is because there is a stop sign for the train. Clearly two engineers (or an engineer and an architect) did not work together while designing this station! It shows that it is very simple to say that you have to collaborate with the relevant professionals, but in practice, finding out whom to collaborate with at the right moment is more messy.

1 comment:

Brad H. said...

I love the metaphor!

Your final statement about collaboration with the right people at the right time is key.

I sometimes think all project plans should be run past a child first, preferably a child with curiousity and common sense. The naivety test would be most useful!