Project management can be stressful at times. Meeting the competing demands of sponsors, stakeholders, and teams can be challenging. Many mistakes are caused by spending too little time on a task, being distracted, or lacking full attention.
Many project management mistakes are caused by one or more of these issues, which are very common. So let's make 2022 the year that we all try to eliminate some of these to experience more project success. Here are five major mistakes to avoid.
Failing to use lessons learned. Unfortunately, I still encounter organizations that have a lessons learned meeting, but they promptly discard them into the trash or put them in an obscure IT folder, never to be seen again. This is perhaps one of the best mistakes to avoid - it will help you from making the same mistakes again and again. Instead, reflect on lessons learned and put them into use on your next project. Then become a champion for organization-wide changes, which will help everyone improve. Here are two articles that can help:
4 Reasons Lessons Learned are Important
Compile Useful Information as You Go
Poor communications. According to a Deloitte study, 32% of project problems stem from poor, inadequate, or ineffective communications. For 2022, avoid this mistake by doing a thorough stakeholder analysis and creating a complete communications plan. Check out our post from 2021, The Ultimate Guide to Effective Communication Plans, for more information on how to complete this.
Failure to evaluate a completed project. Project managers are often remembered for their project delivery, so a project evaluation is an important step. It ensures that all deliverables were included and met requirements and validates all promises were kept. Not only is this an important step, but it is important to honestly and ethically communicate the results. Check out our past article, 5 Tips to be Remembered as an Outstanding Project Manager, for more tips.
Not including all costs. It's a lot harder to create a budget than you may think. It's essential to consider all costs. This goes beyond the basic cost of the people, equipment, and materials used and includes items such as:
- sales taxes on materials
- fees for people and equipment
- costs necessary to keep equipment running, such as fuel and maintenance
Remember, long-term projects may also need to consider the effects of inflation. Check out 5 Tips to Create a Good Project Budget for more ideas on how to get the best budgets.
Not creating a proper schedule. I meet a number of times each year with industry leaders, and schedules appear to be the number one complaint. The issues range from having unrealistic schedules to not knowing how to create one properly. Let's face it. The project plan is the roadmap to a successful project, and the schedule is a critical component of that roadmap. So take some time in 2022 to reflect on past schedule issues and learn more about proper scheduling. You can also check out 5 Tips to Avoid Common Scheduling Issues for more help.
What are your thoughts? Are you going to avoid other mistakes in 2022? Please share in the comments.
Here's to your success in 2022!
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