Managing a project and all its activities requires a lot of work and effort. The managers start the project by researching, appointing a great team, and planning well in advance. However, somewhere along the road, things start to go off the rails – the deadlines are missed, or the customers are not fully satisfied, to name a few. Despite all the team’s hard work, many projects fail every year resulting in huge losses for the companies.
According to a survey, most organisations have a 70% project failure rate.
A project is believed to fail when it cannot deliver what was expected in the predetermined stages. Project management training can assist you in learning the skill of executing and delivering the project following the expectations from them. Until then, let’s understand the common causes of project failures and how to avoid them.
Why Do Projects Fail?
A project manager is required to keep a check on various activities for making the project a success. If not handled effectively, it may take no time to become a failure. There are multiple reasons for a project being not able to meet its expectations, some of which include:-
- Lack of Preparation
“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Benjamin Franklin
Before starting a project, as a project manager, you must prepare for various things, ranging from schedules and meetings to structures and methods. However, what you forget to plan is the effective use of resources. Apart from this, you also need to be prepared to manage the time, cost, and product quality.
It would help if you establish the expectations from the project at the beginning and constantly ensure that they are being achieved. Losing focus at any stage of the project completion can lead to its failure, resulting in substantial financial costs for the business. Plan in advance the execution of the tasks to avoid facing any issues in between the project.
- Setting Unclear Goals and Objectives
One of the most familiar reasons for project failures is the inadequacy in setting goals and objectives. There is no way to realize if the project is successfully completed or not when you don’t know what was to be accomplished in the first place. If you have goals that keep on shifting, the team members can face difficulty achieving them.
To avoid having unclear goals and objectives for your project, you should begin by creating SMART goals – Specific, Measurable, Acceptable, Realistic, and Time-bound. This will motivate employees to move in the right direction and achieve deadlines.
You can acquire the skill of setting clear goals by enrolling in a project management professional certification from XLRI, which allows you to learn with highly experienced professionals.
- Lack of Risk Management
It is always a risky business to not invest in risk management.
The uniqueness of every project always results in some unpredictability to them. There is a chance of several things going wrong, for instance, a team member resigning, shortage of raw materials, breakdowns in machinery, etc. Lack of proper risk management can result in the failure of the project.
It would be best to identify the potential risks at the beginning of the project. This helps you and your team be prepared for the threats that may announce themselves during the course of the project. Moreover, identifying potential risks can help you avoid and limit them by taking corrective actions.
- Scope Creep
The scope of a project is the tasks that are to be performed for delivering a product or service. The scope becomes scope creep when there are continuous changes in the tasks due to stakeholders’ requests without altering the time, costs, and resources. The extra work for the same resources can lead to failure in the completion of projects.
To avoid scope creep, you should verify the project scope with the stakeholders. Documentation of formal requirements and setting up a clear project schedule can help as well. You can benefit from enrolling in project management training which has the objective of providing a holistic view of this domain that covers not only the modern tools and techniques but also topics like project governance, audits, and performance assessment.
- Use of Wrong Tools
Several tools can help you in managing and completing the project effectively. However, not all of them are straightforward to use and may even slow you down. Some tools are not flexible enough to track assignments, team members, and the project’s status.
To avoid delays in projects resulting from using the wrong tools, identify and analyze the software and match the tool’s features with your requirements. Finally, choose the one that is the most efficient for your business.
Enrolling in a project management professional certification from XLRI can help you gain hands-on experience with project simulations and tools like MS Project and Wimi.
Related : Phases of Project Management
- Inadequate Monitoring and Controlling
As a project manager, you should ensure that there is regular monitoring and controlling of all the project activities. Lack of supervision can lead to delays and poor project performance. Moreover, it can lead to conflicts between the team members.
It is critical for the accomplishment of any project to review its performance, identify the areas that need changes and developments, and work on implementing the same. You should regularly conduct meetings and check with your team members as well. This can help ensure that things do not slow down and tasks are completed in time.
The successful completion of projects is vital to the growth of all organisations. There are various causes that can result in a project failing. However, acquiring the right skills with project management training can help you to set clear goals and objectives, manage risk, use the tools which increase productivity, and monitor and control the tasks effectively.
So now that you know what activities are essential in ensuring the success of the project, enrol yourself for the project management professional certification from XLRI and associate with an industry expert to gain insights into current project management trends. Enrol today and add value to your business.
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