Billions of dollars are lost around the world every year due to various projects either failing or being completely mismanaged to the point that they end up costing way more than their original budget projection.
Strangely, project managers haven’t been getting the same bad reputation as bankers have been over the past few years, but we’ll save that argument for another day.
We looked at the most critical aspects of project management across any industry.
The Project Manager
Everything flows from this person. Without a respected and competent project manager, nothing would ever happen. Granted, often there are people fitting this description perfectly, and still nothing happens, but they are in the minority, thankfully.
While a project manager may sometimes only be on the periphery of initial planning, once a project starts to come together they are the main source of motivation and leadership, as well as having the ultimate call should something go wrong.
Project managers are required to be calm, fluid thinkers, with the ability to interpret information and make fact-based decisions quickly.
Information technology comes into everyone’s lives on a daily basis in some manner, and it is a crucial factor in the world of project management. Software can now help to plan a project, set the budget, give an indication of progress, whether more people are needed, and many other things. In fact, short of becoming the project manager and also doing the work itself, modern software programs pretty much have all bases covered.
The biggest reason software is used, and is so crucial, is not to make somebody redundant, but rather to massively reduce the risk of human error.
Even the most organised projects have the potential to go wrong should one miscalculation take place, and software can reduce the probability of this occurring to almost zero.
Unsurprisingly, the biggest reason why projects fail is because they haven’t been planned correctly. All possible outcomes and eventualities should be prepared for when project planning, with plenty of time left for flexibility or dealing with any issues that come up during the process.
Many projects often run on such tight deadlines that it is inevitable that something will suffer, and more often than not it is the quality of work.
There should be one plan, that one person is in charge of and is responsible for updating. Whether it is a Gantt chart, a flow chart, or even a simple list of what needs doing, one is enough, as it will keep the whole process as simple as possible.
Project management is easy, if done correctly. The old adage of ‘failing to prepare is preparing to fail’ often rings true, but with careful planning and execution from start to finish, any project has a great chance of being a success.
Robert is an online content writer across a number of industries, with a specific interest in tools that can help to develop businesses, including project management platforms, and VPS hosting services for websites.
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