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Risk for Today’s Fast Paced Projects

Risk Management Takes Time—Some Projects Don’t

Risk management takes time: time to determine the risks, time to discuss whether those risks are worth investigating further, and time addressing any risks that become issues. However, projects don’t move at the same pace as they once did. In fact, projects are often moving so quickly that traditional project management isn’t able to keep up. Add to this the nature of who is available for various projects, and you have a recipe for trouble:

In the past, projects were given to the most experienced engineers to help in controlling project risk because it was thought that experience was the most significant way to deal with risk. Also, technical background was viewed to be the cure-all for dealing with certain types of risk a project would encounter. Today, projects move so fast and resources are slim, it is hard to always put the most experienced people in charge of a program. Technical risk is usually unique and varies from project to project. Program managers with good people skills can leverage limited resources of technical expertise and still be successful. When projects of similar nature are conducted, there may be a pervasive expectation by management, that however fast the last project commenced, the succeeding project should be conducted even quicker.

A Quick List of Rules

Blog post author Kevin Engler shares a brief list of rules to help manage risks on  fast moving projects. They include:

Accepting a certain amount of risk, though being prepared for it

Not letting the high risk element of a project drag the team down

Sharing the risks with your customer—they have a stake in the project as well

Trying to make the risk visible to management and assure they are taking ownership in the risk management process

Allow yourself to be flexible with schedule and technical risk

These rules point out the larger elements that must be in place in order for any risk management to occur on a project: executive buy-in, open communication to team-members and stakeholders, and honesty in where the project is going. These are all elements that projects (no matter how fast moving) need if they have any hope of being successful.

Read the full article here:

About Matthew Kabik

Matthew Kabik is the former Editor of Computer Aid's Accelerating IT Success. He worked at Computer Aid, Inc. from 2008 to 2014 in the Harrisburg offices, where he was a copywriter, swordsman, social media consultant, and trainer before moving into editorial.

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