FAILURE IS NOT AN OPTION.
It certainly sounds like a plan, but
getting a project back on track takes
more than majestic proclamations.
And the odds aren’t exactly on your
side. According to The Standish Group,
24 percent of IT projects worldwide in
2008 were either canceled before completion or delivered but never used.
There’s no end to the reasons a project
can go woefully off track: market shifts,
poor planning, budget cuts, personal
conflicts, changing corporate priorities.
If a project manager is paying
attention, though, the signs are all
there—especially those from on high.
“A rapid decline in executive commitment, redirection of funds away
from a project or increasing vocal dissatisfaction among the main customers and
stakeholders are all ominous signs that a
project is failing,” says Alex Julian, PMP,
program manager at Resource IT
Solutions, São Paulo, Brazil.
Some projects get the ax, while others
are marked for rescue. And often, the
call on whether the projects should be
salvaged has little to do with how well
“A lot of these decisions are tied to business reasons,” says Brian H. Munroe, PMP,
CEO of MTI Learning Inc., a training
company in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.
Projects linked to client requirements or key business or governmental
strategies, for example, will carry on—
no matter what. “Some projects just
have to happen,” he says.
If a project is deemed worth saving,
it’s up to the project manager to identify