‘Over by Christmas’ Syndrome

‘Over by Christmas’ Syndrome

If your project has a deadline coming up to the end of the year – dates like Dec 31, Dec 20, Dec 18 (last Friday before Christmas in 2020) and so on – you may be a victim of ‘Over by Christmas’ Syndrome.

When WWI broke out in August 1914, on all sides, there was the idea that it would be ‘over by Christmas’. It happened again in WWII when the Allies thought the war would end in December 1944. Instead, they ended up having to fight the Battle of the Bulge and the war lasted another six months.

‘Over by Christmas’ is an idea that’s deeply rooted in the Western psyche.

If you’re being pressured by your boss / customer / stakeholders to get your project done before the end of the year, they may be suffering from ‘Over by Christmas’ Syndrome.

Furthermore, it may be that if you and your team bust your collective asses to get it to them before Christmas, there may not be a lot they can do with it – given that they may be too busy wrapping up their own operations for the year to do anything useful with the thing you’ve given them.

So check with them.

They might be much happier with a date in January. The before-Christmas date they’ve given you may be negotiable. And this might give you some breathing space.

Check it.

It’s worth a try.