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What does a Quartermaster do?

Quartermaster was originally a military term for troops who were sent ahead to prepare before the rest of the soldiers arrive.
In a metaphorical sense: someone who is responsible for the preparation, organization of something entirely new, pioneer, trailblazer. .
In this definition some terms are fairly universal and are present in most used definitions in the mission of a quartermasters:
- Organization of something new
- Responsible for the preparation
- Precursor, pioneer
- Temporarily

These properties indicate that there are many differences between the regular project management and the Quartermaster. The biggest differences are:
- Less frameworks and security
- More degrees of freedom
- Big impact on the future organization

Difference between Quartermaster and Project manager

In the classic project management most or a large part of the following elements are present or known:
- There is a legal person from where is operated
- This organization has (possibly informal) a mission, vision and strategy
- There is a clear mission / task for the required job or order
- To realize these there are human, financial frameworks and a time horizon / planning included
- There is a location where the work would take place
- There is a support staff (secretarial, administration, human resources, communication)

For the Quartermaster these (many of) the above aspects are not present. This has several consequences:
- A quartermaster has more degrees of freedom, but also has to operate in a larger vacuum. A quartermasters order has a higher risk factor, because the framework of the order/mission contains spaces or is not clearly defined. A quartermaster (often) develops its own objectives and frameworks to realize that only his most important guideline is the compass by which he can achieve the goal.
- The contract of the quartermasters contains activities at different levels and fast turnaround times. The result is that a quartermaster must be able to act quickly, switch between different levels, make guidelines and simultaneously know how they work in practice (or should be worked out).
- Due to the often unexplored area it is necessary to work together with many unknown people based on mutual trust rather than from a formal position.

Characteristics Quartermaster

- A quartermaster is a soloist who can deal with people tremendously
- A quartermaster is creative and thinks preferably off the beaten track to achieve its target (and sometimes does things that normally is not allowed)
- A quartermaster must have enough ego to assert themselves, but has to release that ego once the goal is reached and others can go take credit
- A quartermaster is the director and the concierge at the same time
- A quartermaster is a true optimist
- A quartermaster is stubborn and rigid regarding the process and flexible, service-and customer-oriented with respect to the contents

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