Note: I am not a PM. I'm a technical manager who is temporarily overseeing a project until PM is spun up.
I have a pair of independent contractors - call them Mike and Vern - performing design and development work respectively. They are very good individual contributors: hard working, smart, hungry. What they lack is foresight and caution. Several times in the past year, we have been forced to go back to the well to ask for more money because of bugs, incomplete requirements, unguarded customer changes, etc... These guys are good performers, but they just don't self manage well.
Over the past four weeks, I've been requesting more regular updates and planning sessions. These planning sessions seem to go well, but when it comes to executing the plan everything slows down. Status never gets reported. Meetings get ducked. PTO gets taken. It falls apart. More than once, I've seen communications like "I can't take another minute of X" and "Waiting for permission slows everything down and is a real problem."
How can I get the reporting and predictability I need from my people to do medium-term and long-range planning when they just don't want to be managed - at least not by me?