Where did it all go so wrong?
Have you ever managed a project that seems doomed to fail from the outset? Perhaps the budget is inaccurate, or the deliverables are simply not possible within allowed schedule.
We are often asked, ‘Is there any way to ‘right’ a ‘wrong’ project?’
Many common project management issues stem from poor planning, and often they can’t easily be rectified, particularly if the project contract stipulates the deliverables, schedule and budget.
6 steps to make it right again
Here are six steps that can help get your project back under control:
- Understand your contractual obligations. Before you can begin working out a plan of action, you need to ensure you know exactly what your obligations are.
- Tell the truth, early and often. There is no good way to tell someone you can’t deliver on what you’ve promised, but delaying or avoiding this truth will only serve to make the situation worse.
- Effective Stakeholder Management. From the outset you’ll need to carefully manage stakeholder expectations (both internally and externally) and ensure you keep the lines of communication with your stakeholders open and honest. It is important that there are no more surprises for any of your stakeholders.
- Understand your funding. You’ll need to ensure your funding is sufficient to cover the work, particularly if you know you’ll need to over budget to deliver on your contractual obligations.
- Minimise wastage. Effective planning can help tame your budget, through minimising wastage and down time.
- Economise carefully. When you’re looking to economise on your materials, ensure they are fit for purpose. If you’re making selections based purely on cost, you’ll likely experience more significant cost blowouts down the track if they aren’t fit for purpose and need to be replaced.
It is essential that these issues are understood and managed, and of course addressed as early as possible. Careful project management planning and good communication across the life of the project can help to turn an awkward start into a successful finish.