8 Approaches for Achieving IT Goals

There are great expectations for IT. Are you going to make good on them? In an article for, Jennifer Lonoff Schiff discusses the ways that project managers and IT leaders can turn dreams into reality. Here are eight tips to succeed:

  1. Work your way backward.
  2. Define requirements up front.
  3. Consult with all stakeholders.
  4. Create specific, measurable goals.
  5. Divide large goals into smaller, more manageable goals.
  6. Use project management software.
  7. Track your progress.
  8. Celebrate success.

Playing Goalie

The only way to guarantee your course of action is going to result in the desired outcome is to start from there and work backward. It requires a long series of thinking like, “Well, to get X, we definitely need Y and Z. To have Y, we need A, B, and C. Z requires D and E, of course…” This assists greatly in the quest to define clear requirements at the outset of an initiative. The less ambiguity there is in a project, the better, though a toe’s worth of wiggle room should be left over to account for necessary changes. And in the pursuit of clarity, make your goals “SMART”: (Yes, I am going to type out what this acronym means for the sixtieth time.) specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound.

About dividing large goals, the article offers this:

“Trying to achieve an enormous goal all at once can be overwhelming,” says Jonathan D. Roger, project portfolio manager, AndPlus. “Instead, split large goals into smaller goals that you can accomplish in less time. Achieving a smaller goal takes less time [and] you get the satisfaction and motivation of achieving a goal [and] seeing your greater vision realized. Smaller goals are also less risky, and you can more realistically consider how much time a smaller goal will take to achieve and what challenges you may face.”

Project management software can provide a tremendous helping hand when applied the right way. Project governance software like Automated Project Office is equally valuable. In any case, track progress toward goals to know if your chosen tactics are producing the right results, and celebrate successes when they happen. Make sure the whole team tastes the nectar of victory.

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