Have you ever been a part of a project that you feel just shouldn't exist? Felt like you've wasted time, or didn't have a clear direction as you contribute to a new project effort?
You are not alone. There are many reasons projects can break down . . . but just a few ways successful project managers create results during project planning that make all the difference .
Without addressing these key performance areas, you can expect projects to run over, be over budget, and under produce. You'll be frustrated with a lack of resources and perhaps even be under compensated for your efforts.
Are you setting yourself up for the same frustrations, or are you using relationship principles to create successful projects?
Document desired outcome. What will this new department or project create? You will be required to justify your existence to upper management, your customer, and others involved in providing the resources necessary to reach core objectives. Name three key outcomes from your project plan.
Communicate measurements tied to objectives. How will you know you've reached the target objectives? Use certain tangible measures like revenue generated, new customers, or any other metric demonstrating progress. For each outcome, list three quantifying measures and target values.
How will results be measured? Results can be measured internally or externally, by your staff or by the accounting department. How ever you measure, it's important to do it on a weekly basis, and to break larger goals into smaller monthly performance targets. Break down each target value into weekly targets and required actions.
What results do end users require? Your users (not necessarily buyers) will have certain desires that must be addressed before successful completion. Determine who will use the results of your efforts, and what parameters do you use to measure success. Describe the outcome end users require, and then outline seven key characteristics for each point.
Who is your end user, what outcome is desired? In addition to requirements, there is a certain outcome they wish as a result of what you are doing. If you don't reach or produce this outcome you project will not be considered successful, so know it by heart from the beginning. Write down a brief description of your end user, and prioritize a list of their top twenty requirements.
How will your group be compensated? In business, if you're not generating revenue, then you'll not in business. Determine how your group will be rewarded, where will funding come from, how you will generate revenue, and if the project is economically sound. Setup base compensation plus milestone performance bonuses.
Break even and good economics. At what point does the company cover it's costs, and is that point readily achievable with pessimistic numbers? Stack the economic deck in favor of the company by planning your numbers in a worse case; if you can break even in the worse case, then you have good economics. Perform a break even analysis, then another at half results.
Identify alternatives to the new department or project. The most ideal situation for any company is to create the desired results without starting a new project or department. Can you solve this problem without creating a new group? Answering this question holds back the bureaucracy. List twenty ways to solve this problem without a new project.
Starting a new project is more than writing down three key objectives, but must include the results desired by you and your end user, plus reward for achieving desired results in a timely manner .
A successful project requires planning before any action, is segmented with specific measurable milestones, and is clear about desired results (even creating them on paper before it starts. )
Are you considering relationship elements of project management or just following the same old things that just don't work? It's your choice. Use these strategies to get results before you start any new project.
Justin Hitt is a strategic relations consultant with the Center for Strategic Relations. He is available for limited consultative support of professional organizations serving other businesses. Call +1 (877) 207-3798 or visit https://iunctura.com/