“Surely” is a word that should not be in the vocabulary of the vigilant Project Manager. Uttering phrases like, “Surely the customer knew we would…” or, “Surely the software is able to…” or even, “Surely they don’t expect…”, means you have made assumptions.
When you make assumptions you are leaving yourself open to all sorts of problems down the line that will, of course, materialise at the worst possible time.
Assumptions are a bad thing and are best left to the amateurs. Since you’re a good PM you will be keen to be across everything in your project and you will have thought throught the ‘What-if’ scenarios, giving you time to put any mitigation plans into action.
So, do your homework, make sure you know what is going on and don’t get caught with your pants down. But surely you knew that…