Project Under Budget or Underwater?
According to in-depth surveys by the Project Management Institute, approximately $80 billion dollars per year is lost in challenged and failed projects in the U.S. The reasons are myriad – lack of human and material resources, tepid buy-in from senior management/stakeholders, poor governance procedures, or skeletal planning. William Volpe, PMP, asserts that 50% of the project life cycle needs to be spent in the planning phase. In reality, perhaps 10% of the life of a project is invested in planning, all but grounding any chance for a successful arrival at your destination.
Comprehensive planning includes not just a document life cycle, but thoroughly documented policies and procedures, defined roles and responsibilities, how resources are shared, prioritization, the “hand-off” points of a project, document templates and work instructions, stress testing, and quality control.
Finally, there has to be a communication plan that includes a conflict resolution process and contingency arrangements. Why? It’s estimated that 80% of mistakes, miscues, missteps, malfunctions in the workplace, call them what you may, are due to sloppy communication. Causal factors can be lack of complete documentation, lack of consensual definitions, or the silent killer of projects…withheld communications, for which serious consequences must be documented and enforced. An effective communication plan is the tether that ties it all together.
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