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Achieving Results with Project Management – Part 1

Have you noticed the rate of pace of change recently?  Products, services, and organisations its seem to be constantly changing as they adapt to new market conditions, new financial situations, changing business practices, adapting to legal requirements and new technology.

It will come as no surprise that in order for organisations to change, running projects often creates such change, and as a result businesses are increasingly driven to find individuals who can excel in his project oriented environment.

It goes without saying, that such individuals are paid handsomely and have an excellent career ahead of them.

Would you like to be one of them?

Since you have found my website, the chances are that you’ve already been asked to manage a project for the first time all that you are already running projects and looking to see where you can find an easier and better way of doing things.

If you are about to embark on your first project, then that is a challenge and may well give you the chance to excel in some think you have not done before.  For many, managing a project even opens the door to a new career.

The good news is, whether you are completely new or have some experience, is that project management has been around for a very long time.  Time enough in fact, for project managers to come up with highly effective strategies and the range of very practical techniques.

This means that you can benefit from all that experience, and I fully intend to give it to you!

I’m an “in the trenches” very experienced senior project manager and have been running large projects for over a quarter of a century.  Believe me, I’ve had my share of disasters too, but that makes me infinitely more capable of helping you shine from the start and avoid the usual pitfalls.

So stay with me here, as you are going to need an effective set of skills and techniques to steal projects to successful completion.

In this series of articles, I’m going to get you off to a great start by showing you what projects and project management really are and by helping you separate projects from non-project assignments.

I’ll even give you some valuable insight on why projects succeed or fail as well as settling you in to the project management mindset.

How to avoid the project pitfall minefield

My intent here is to give you a sound approach to your project so that you steer a path around the many pitfalls that continue to contribute to, or cause, project failure on a mind boggling scale.

You may find yourself asking that is good ways of doing things exist, why do people ignore them and go on to have their projects fail?  A fair point.

People make the same mistakes repeatedly, and they are largely avoidable.  You can’t have missed the fact that from time to time TV &Newspapers gloat over some spectacular failed project – very often public financed.  You know the sort of thing, three years late and the budget has doubled!

So grab a cup of your favourite beverage and let me give you a quick look at the main causes of project failure.  I warn you, this this makes for depressing reading, particularly if you recognize some elements in parts of your own organization.

However, this list will give you a solid background against which to contrast successful project management and rolled lead you nicely into many of the techniques and best practices that you will find on my www.projex.com website.

The Ten Main Reasons for Project Failure

Lack of clear objectives

Nobody is really sure what the project is about and even less of those people can agree on what they should be

Lack of risk management

Every project has risk, and this is the things that go wrong when someone could have easily for seen them, and put specific controls in place that would have prevented them in the first place, or at least minimized their impact on the project objectives

No senior management “by-in”

This normally comes about because senior managers were never convinced and so never supported the project, leading to problems such as lack of resource.  As a consequence of this, those managers did not exercise normal management supervision as they routinely to India other areas of responsibility

Poor planning

Well, to be frank, this is often the problem of no planning being done at all.  Is not surprising then, when things run out of control, and not least because nobody knows where the project should be at this point any way

No clear progress milestones.  This is a direct consequence from poor planning.  The lack of milestones means nobody sees when things are off track, and problems go unnoticed for a long time until it is too late to fix them and the project fails

To Be Continued – Get Part 2 HERE!