7 Critical Factors of Project Success

September 30, 2011 | Author: PM Hut | Filed under: Project Management Best Practices

7 Critical Factors of Project Success
By Daniel Lock

I recently went to a Project Management lecture put on by the local PMI. The speakers insisted: “Your project won’t deliver unless some underlying factors are in good shape: namely strong executive sponsorship.”

It got me thinking, what are my top factors that contribute to project success:

  1. A compelling business case. Unless the team understand why the project is needed, it always loses in the prioritization battle when trade-offs need to be made.
  2. An inspiring, shared vision of the future. This is a corollary of number 1, and will galvanize the entire project team from top to bottom.

  3. A fully aligned strategic project road-map. Decide what resources and people you will need to deliver the project and how the users will need to change and adapt at the other end.

  4. Evident senior management involvement. Big time projects can succeed when there is true commitment from the top.

  5. A decision-making model or governance model that fosters teamwork. scope changes, issues, risks all need judicious consideration. This is best done in a collegial atmosphere. Ego’s are best left at the door.

  6. A well-defined yet flexible execution process. Things will go wrong, the world changes and yet we still need to execute.

  7. Cultivate a healthy paranoia: Double check the details. When someone says a task is done, don’t take their word for it, drill down and find exactly what has been done. Whatever can wrong, will go wrong. My own mantra is, “Number one, be paranoid; number two, be paranoid; number three, don’t be ridiculous.”

Daniel Lock is the principal of Daniel Lock Consulting Group, a firm specialising in helping leadership to innovate to more rapidly achieve individual and organisational goals.

Daniel is a former project manager, and operational manager at Westpac Bank in Adelaide, Australia. He has managed both line and project functions, and overseen re-organisations and department amalgamations. He has been a speaker at Westpac charity workshops.

2 people have left comments

Having established status reporting standards and procedures goes a long way to helping projects to succeed, arguably satisfying points 3 – 5, and 7.

3: Projects do need road maps. Status reports help ensure that you’re not taking any detours.

4: Including senior management sponsors and stakeholders on a status report mailing list keeps them involved and saves them from ugly surprises.

5: Timely status reporting keeps all team members on the same page. When decisions about scope changes, issues, etc. arise, everyone in the discussion may have individual views, but they all share a common perspective.

7: Detailed status reports give your paranoia a grocery list of items to check off. In our case, our software lets you click links in a status report to drill down on almost anything, including tasks. Satisfying paranoia can’t get much easier than that. :)

Joe MacNish
<a href=”www.TrackerSuite.Net/StatusReports

Joe MacNish wrote on September 30, 2011 - 1:47 pm | Visit Link

* Salary
* Ability to use new technologies
* Working environment

From my > 10 years developer experience I can say that the above mentioned factors are the top for a great number of developers. Of course, if they are not yet beginners :)
If with every successfully finished project nothing changes for me, why would I be stimulated by a shared vision, project road map or something else from the list? And if I’m as a developer not stimulated by those, why do you think these top-factors would help the project to deliver?

Hugo wrote on October 4, 2011 - 5:35 am | Visit Link

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