In the world of projects, there are always equal chances of success and failure. So, it becomes important how to avoid project failure and how to overcome it. Failure always tends to be more public than success. Daily we hear news of many projects that had huge loss or project is not completed within given deadline. This problem can be solved by using both leadership and proper management. With proper leadership, you will be inspired and will grow more; with proper management, you will have more accountability and consistency.
Top Project Management Techniques to Avoid Project Failure
This article describes some project management techniques to avoid project failure. If there are no proper techniques of project management then surely it will result in the project failure. Project managers should know how to overcome project failure and need to adopt efficient and effective methods for the same. So, here we have listed some ways of reducing project failure.
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1. Adopt the Proactive Approach
Project managers get the skills and knowledge for the ongoing project from their past experience after working for many years. An experienced and highly skilled project manager has all the capabilities to handle the customers and knows how to avoid project failure.
If you have just started project management then there should be an experienced mentor with you so that you can discuss your problems and you can get proper suggestions from his experience. If you are experienced in project management, you should use your skills and knowledge into the project and you will be aware of the common reasons for the project failure.
Here are some best opportunities that you can adapt to do your project planning with the proactive approach:
- Inappropriate skills and insufficient manpower can result in huge loss and delay in deliverables
- Poor communication, inappropriate work planning, and improper risk management can lead to the project failure
- Never be rushed to start the project on the assumption that you can deliver it earlier. Even it can result in errors, rework and omissions.
- Emphasize the importance of properly initiating the project which is the most critical to the project’s success.
- You must recognize the point of time when your project is unrecoverable
- Use a proper development methodology for your project development.
2. Plan Project’s Strategy and Project’s Implementation
Planning is the most important stage of all the projects. Most of the time, proper attention is not given during the planning stage. Planning is something how you are going to work on the project and how will you implement the project. What will be the strategy; how you are going to start your project. This is all you need to plan to avoid project failure. If you will do a proper planning then it will increase the project’s success probability. Once you have completed your project’s planning, then start the execution of the project using Project Management Life Cycle.
3. Manage the Project Goals
First of all, you should manage your project scope and you should not try to control it. Never rely on understanding, verbal agreements and on memory for any of the decisions you have taken for your project implementation. You should document the decisions, actions and the results of the project before you have started the project, during the project and after you have implemented your project. It is always necessary to ensure the project deliverables and work properly with the customer requirements to avoid project failure.
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4. Avoid Unrealistic Expectations
Never set unrealistic expectations and the time frames with the stakeholders, team members, and the customers to meet your project’s deadline. It is related to the proper project beginning but goes deeper until the project’s implementation. Realistic expectations must be set for the team members as per their capabilities to avoid project failure. Also, you should encourage them to work with enthusiasm and get beyond their comfort zone to reach the project goal.
5. Track Project’s Progress
You can track your project’s progress by considering two things, first is where your project should be and secondly, where actually it is at a certain point in time. So, to control your project, the first thing is to have a plan. The planning of a project will help you to determine where your project should be at this moment. The second thing is to find out where your project should be at any given time. For this, you should know how much of the work has been completed, whether your work is on schedule, whether it is going as per the planning, etc. So, to find accurately about the progress of your project, you should consider all the three factors. These are schedule, scope, and the cost incurred. These are the three parameters that control any project and play an important role to overcome project failure.
6. Identify Risk Factors
The risk is something that cannot be avoided and will certainly happen. So, the best thing you can do to avoid risk is to identify, analyze and respond to the risk factors. So, if you find out the risks and the potential issues at the starting stages of the project, your project team can avoid these risks with appropriate actions. Identifying and resolving risk factors will help the project manager to reduce the chances of project failure. Thus, in this way you can do proper risk management and can avoid project failure.
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7. Propose the Solutions
Even though you are the project manager but still you will not be having all the skills and knowledge of the world. You also need professionals around you to avoid project failure. So, you should discuss the problems and also present your proposed solutions to the team members. Also, show your team members and stakeholders that how your proposed solutions can result in fulfilling their needs. You should also think about your team member’s inputs and consider them. Listen to their solutions and consider the suggestions they share with you. So, you should agree with the best solution after discussing all the possible solutions with the team.
8. Use Correct Methodology
Selection of Project Management methodology is one of the important decisions that you must take if you are a project manager. What you choose will impose an intense impact on the teamwork. But, these methodologies have their own advantages and disadvantages depending on project type and project scope. Here are some examples of top project management methodologies.
- Waterfall method
- Hybrid approach
- Critical Chain Project Management
- Integrated Project Management Technique
- Critical Path Method (CPM)
All the project management methodologies can’t be considered best for a project. So, understand the project requirements and choose the one that is best suitable for your project. The selection of correct methodology will help you reach the project goal within the given time period avoiding project failure.
9. Continuous Improvement and Analysis
Continuous improvement is a technique for analyzing contingencies to have a concentration on goal and waste reduction. Now, this technique is used by a number of organizations across the whole world to analyze saving contingencies. This method is highly valuable for the project management process as it reduces project cost and makes a balance. With the running project, you need to analyze present work status, identify and solve issues. And after that search for any contingency that can improve the chances of project success by reducing the possibilities of project failure.
10. Focus on Stakeholder’s Requirements
As we all know that a project will succeed only when it achieves its goal and meets the stakeholder’s expectations. In order to succeed in project management, all of the team members need to be actively involved with the project and be strongly devoted to the success. Devoting means that the following phases need to be inscribed:
- The proficient initiative, which helps the team in the implementation of different tasks over the project life–cycle.
- Adequate financing, which ensures the cost- generating department of the organization for sufficient funding for the projects.
As the requirement of the stakeholders goes on changing over time, there should be need of proper and continuous communication with them to make sure that the project won’t lose strength. Being a project manager, try to focus their requirement as they are the only persons who can make or break the project.
The project management techniques mentioned above set the procedures to measure the progress of a project. These are the different ways of reducing project failure that will help in handling the troubled projects. So, the most important way to avoid project failure is to plan, execute, and action well. Thus, project failure can be avoided by better project planning and proper control methods.
Hard work, perfection, loyalty, persistence and learning from the failures are the only ways to get success. If you give up, you can never get success whether it’s your life or a project. So, just implement best project management techniques for the project and you will definitely reach the success!
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