Common Mistakes in Project Management

October 11, 2012 by  
Filed under Business

Two common complaints against projects are that they are poorly planned and badly executed. The former naturally leads to the latter, and the outcome is usually not desirable. The primary reason cited for this is the lack of communications among the various levels of an organization. Many inexperienced project managers fail to win the hearts and minds of their subordinates, who are largely responsible for the success or failure of a project. There are also several other factors that affect the final outcome of a project. Here are some common mistakes in project management:

• Lack of the right resources: Assigning the right resources is vital for the success of any project and is the hallmark of a good plan. Too often, this simple fact is either ignored or not given due importance. Without the right resources, the project is doomed to fail.

• Inept project managers: Good leadership is vital for the success of any endeavor. Project management is not just about putting the plan into execution, but also dealing with investors, stakeholders and beneficiaries in the right way. However, many well-planned projects fail because of inept and inexperience management team.

• Unrealistic project schedule: One reason many projects fail is unrealistic project schedule. This may either be due to external pressure or due to the planner’s ignorance or inexperience. A project should be allowed enough time to achieve its goals, but not too much time for it to become a waste of time, money and resources.

• Arrogance of the project planners and managers: Many project planners and managers are arrogant to the point that they refuse to listen to the suggestions given by others and make much needed modifications. This either leads to a rigid plan doesn’t match with ground realities or non-cooperation from stakeholders and beneficiaries, resulting in failure of the project.

• Ignoring or overlooking problems: Many unexpected problems may arise during the implantation of a project. In their haste to complete the project or out of sheer ignorance, many project managers either completely ignore or overlook the problems. These same problems may later become the undoing the project.

• Refusing to seek help: No one knows everything about anything, and this includes experts. When project managers encounter problems that they are unable to find solutions by themselves, they should seek help from other experts in the field. Too often their ego prevents them from doing so.

• Failure to implement process: Every project requires a process or processes to be followed. Many project managers and their team ignore or scoff at these processes either because of ego or out of ignorance. Not implementing set processes is almost always detrimental to a project.

• Not rectifying errors: When errors are made, the sensible thing to do is to rectify them as soon as they are discovered. Many project managers, however, tend to ignore them out of laziness or in the pretext of saving cost. This ultimately becomes costly for the project.

It is important for project managers acquaint themselves with the above issues so that they can effectively carry out the responsibilities given to them for the successful outcome of the project. Both young and experienced project managers are advised to put their ego aside and enroll in project management courses that can help them become effective and successful in their chosen field.

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