Avoid These 7 Project Management Mistakes at all Costs
Project management is an essential part of any organization. Failure to do it right can be costly in so many ways. At best, the project will suffer some minor delays and at worst, the project can fail entirely. This is why project managers need to make sure they bring their A-game to each and every project by avoiding these seven mistakes at all costs:
1. Lack of direction
When a project has no clear objectives, it can be hard to come up with critical performance measures for success. With nothing to tell if the project is going the right way, failure is likely. It is up to project managers to come up with clear objectives and communicate them to the team so everyone knows what they need to do to move the project forward.
2. Not taking the initiation phase seriously
Before a project begins, everyone needs to know what their roles and responsibilities are. Skipping the project kick-off meeting to orient everyone can be disastrous in the long run. However, many project managers skip this crucial step, especially when they are under pressure to deliver results quickly.
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3. Poor communication
Under-communication is one of the biggest project killers – it is always better to over-communicate than under-communicate. So communicate effectively to ensure that everyone is in the loop. That way, should things go wrong, no one is caught off-guard and no one points fingers.
4. Micromanaging team members
When you micromanage team members, you can kill their motivation and even incite rebellious behavior. People don’t like working under a microscope. As a project manager, you need to trust your employees to do the work – let them make decisions and own up to them.
5. Not doing a risk analysis
Some project managers skip risk analysis, thinking everything will go off without a hitch. However, it is unrealistic to think that a project will not run into some hiccups somewhere during its lifespan. By doing a risk analysis of things that can go wrong, project managers can get ahead of unexpected changes instead of panicking that things aren’t going according to plan.
6. Not listening to team members
Project management is a team effort, even though the project manager is the leader. Project managers should open the floor to team member suggestions that could help the project run smoothly. A project manager who shoots down all suggestions from team members will establish authority but communicate distrust in the abilities of their team members.
7. Inaccurate time and budget estimations
Time and money are the biggest resources that are subject to incorrect estimations. Project managers need to use a bottom-up approach when estimating time and budget in order to not miss the mark. And if the project manager is doing that kind of project for the first time, they should consult others that have successfully delivered in the past.
Project management is the difference between a successful project and a failed one. When mistakes are made, the project can be negatively impacted in a major way. If you are a project manager, be on the lookout for the above-mentioned mistakes – be sure to avoid them at all costs.