Project Management

8 Essential Ingredients for Project Success

All projects, no matter their ultimate goal, are composed of the same fundamental elements that make them successful. In an article for, Jennifer Lonoff Schiff elaborates on some of these basics and explores how to best keep a project on track for success. There are eight aspects that you must keep in mind to dictate project success:

  1. Define deadlines.
  2. Delegate project lead and sponsor from the start.
  3. Build the right team.
  4. Set a realistic schedule.
  5. Utilize a software system.
  6. Keep everyone up to date.
  7. Empower team members.
  8. Face any problems.

The Taste of Success

When the scope and deadlines are defined immediately, it is easier for everyone to keep their eye on the prize and know exactly what needs to be done and when. Complex projects can often overwhelm individuals, causing them to entirely miss the important deadlines. During the first meeting, defining who the project lead and sponsor are will help the client see who is responsible for the mundane, day-to-day tasks and who ultimately owns the project.

It is important to get the right mix of people that possess a variety of skills to make up the project team. The project’s success is ultimately dependent on how the team works together. It additionally helps if the team gets along well together. The project team is only human, and when they are pushed too hard and overworked, there are likely mistakes made. Project schedules should be realistic and achievable so that no one goes mad.

A software system can help to keep everything organized and everyone moving in the right direction. Additionally, statistics have proven that software greatly improves the probability that a project is completed both on time and on budget. The details of the project, any clients, and even the team itself should be kept up to date at all times. Projects are evolving entities that never stay constant; therefore, it is important to keep up with all the finite details and keep everyone in the loop about progress.

Project managers are responsible for taking accountability and keeping the project on pace, but the real decision-making and organization come from the team. Team members should feel empowered in their roles so they can make wise decisions.

Ignoring a problem does not make it go away, and it may cause it to fester until it grows too large to handle. Problems should be faced head-on. When something goes awry, take the responsibility for the mistake and move on. Problems will always arise. What matters is how they are handled.

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