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Make Project Failure Obsolete

In our last post, we discussed how failure is not an option in today’s business environment. This post will cover how to do the seemingly impossible of getting projects right every time.

Projects require perfect plans and flawless execution. The preponderance of project management goes toward planning, leaving a lack of emphasis on the latter. IT leaders will say that they’re investing in execution, but the investments goes toward the technical elements.

Execution suffers when project managers are running too many projects to conduct flawless execution. A leader’s job doesn’t stop after creating the baselines. In order to have no breaches with zero margin of error, there needs to be continuing oversight.

There needs to be enough strong leadership in place to ensure the technical resources do their homework to the exact schedule, budget, and spec. Otherwise, there will be variances! When those variances go unnoticed, the scope creeps. And when there isn’t enough strong leadership to establish project control, the necessary adjustments aren’t made to save the project. That’s when projects go off the rails.

In the case of Equifax, it all resulted from one software engineer missing one patch on one piece of software. Investing more in technical talent to execute IT security is not the solution, then, since any software engineer can update software. Investing more in planning is likely not the solution either, since software patches were likely already in the plan. It’s the accountability and oversight that instills the discipline to the plan throughout the lifecycle, and that’s what ensures success. In order to get everything right, every time, on-time it comes down to project leadership.

Our next posts will cover the Seven Habits of Successful Project Leaders, which will illustrate who can provide this necessary layer of accountability and oversight to ensure your organization averts failure.