Why Does Everyone Hate The Words “Gantt Chart?”

It seems like whenever we say the words “Gantt Chart” those within earshot throw up in their mouth a little.

But why?

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Since we have a career project manager on our staff (yours truly), we figured I should give it some thought. Here’s my hypothesis and supportive, experiential points:

1 – The Gantt Chart is like a pocket protector, or a hip-belt holster for your phone; they are purely functional inventions. They were the best solutions to the problems they solved the moment they were created. Can you think of a better method to hold your writing utensils or display your plan? No, you can’t. Don’t even try… you just can’t.

2 – The Gantt Chart…is a chart. The word “chart” inherently makes us think of “numbers” and “analysis” and “statistics.” All words that, at one point in my pre-nerd life, elicited fear or an unconscious desire to yawn.  Let me put it into perspective: Justin Bieber Chart. Superman Chart. …you get it.

3 – Speaking on based on experience, creating Gantt Charts (the old way, manually), is a NIGHTMARE that you can’t ever wake up from. If you’ve ever had to wash all your dishes by hand, and then were blessed with a dishwasher, you know what I mean.

Summary:

Our experience has created our gag-reflex for Gantt Charts, so we use words like “Plan Communications” or “skittle charts” (one of my favorites over the years) to avoid it. It’s a psychological means of talking about the thing we need (there’s no alternative), without actually using the word.

To be clear, though, we, at OnePager, actually love the Gantt Chart, and we talk about it constantly. It’s our business. BUT, we make Gantt Charts sexy. We’re the high-tech, armor-plated, pocket protector, Justin Bieber of Gantt Charts…OK, maybe scratch that last one. Although we won’t say the “words” when we take your calls, just know that we’re doing everything we can to make creating Gantt Charts something that will eventually put the words “ahhhh” into your mouth, rather than something less pleasant.

This entry was posted in Fun, Gantt Chart and tagged by Jay. Bookmark the permalink.

About Jay

Devoted father of two, lover of mountains, entrepreneurism, and beer. Jay carries with him fourteen years of project management experience within the cable, telecom, construction, software development, and energy industries. The spectrum of projects and programs that Jay has managed throughout his career is broad and deep, enabling him to help clients implement Chronicle Graphics software in a multitude of applications. His employment history includes positions at Narvaes Construction, Leslie Brothers Construction, CSG Systems, Echostar Satellite Services, Comcast, and Level 3 Communications.

6 thoughts on “Why Does Everyone Hate The Words “Gantt Chart?”

  1. Jay….in using your product, I was often asked “hey, can you make another one of your lucky charms charts”….thought you would like that…

  2. Lucky Charm charts. I like that! Around here OnePager charts are called cartoon charts. As if tier 1 schedules drawn in PowerPoint are somehow less cartoonish.

    Part of the dislike of Gantt charts is that Henry Gannt developed them around 1910 to replace line of balance charts that were not answering the mail. Critical path networks didn’t come into use until The Pacific campaign of World War 2; 1958 if you don’t know that CPM was a military secret until the technique was declassified in 1958. Remember bubble charts? Think Pacific Islands. The term “float” takes on a whole new meaning when you realize they first CPM networks were dealing with ships moving from island to island. Bar charts were used to avoid having to study bubble charts/maps. Coded task names were used prevent spies from taking clear photos of island hopping battle support logistics plans.

    Lines of balance, bubble charts, war and hand calculating CPM dates and the general dislike by millennials of anything created before they were born of the all leave a bad taste in the mouth. Is it any wonder some people dislike modern Gantt charts?

    • Chris, you clearly have many battle scars from your experiences in planning, and we appreciate that! If you ever feel like inking a blog post for us, we’d love to have you do it. Gotta pass the torch!

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