What if you can take extra baby steps for your project to succeed? With so much at stake, even if one cannot guarantee a 100% success rate, ensuring you are on the right track is the much-needed push you might be needing. Read on to know how to increase your project management success rate.

Validate the idea

Many projects begin with a blink. But later on, once the idea begins to dull, so does the enthusiasm and the project. Instead of jumping at every sparkly idea, stop and validate if the idea is a profitable business venture and a valuable addition to your target customers.

Create solid goals and objectives

Know what you are working towards by setting clear goals and setting priorities. This may sound like a cliché, but set desired goals and stick to them. Make sure the employees know what they are aiming for. Small wins are the ones that add up to a great success.

Ensure proper understanding of the requirements

During the concept phase, make sure that the stakeholders know about – the project’s deliverables, goals, quality standards, budget, resource constraints and the risks involved. Any changes in any of these elements need to be communicated with everyone involved.

Create a risk response team

Ideally, you should have the probable risk factors jotted down in your project risk management plan. Risk response is the process of controlling the identified risk. If a mishap occurs, being the first line of defense, the risk response team has to be well equipped with the necessary plans and training to control the situation. Risk response may include changing the strategy, mitigation – take action to reduce the risk, transfer the risk to a third party, share the risk, have proper contingency plans.

Start with a project kick-off

A kick-off meeting is the first meeting with the project team and the client. The main purpose of this meeting is to ensure that all the team members understand the project and its direction. Team members can get their doubts clarified.

Develop leadership competencies alongside technical competencies

Most organizations focus heavily on technical capabilities (certifications, training ). As a result, it impacts the ‘softer’ side of the project management skills like leadership, empathy and people skills. Leadership qualities are particularly important when dealing with a large number of people.

Evaluate the quality standards throughout the project lifecycle

Break the project into many stages and get the stakeholders to sign-off deliverables at each stage. Establish objective criteria for quality measurement – like the performance of an application, code standards, industry standards, and past project work. Documenting the project process shows the quality of the progress, which leads to successful project completion.

Report the progress

The ongoing project needs to be compared with the actual project plan. Comparing the plan with the actual estimates gives a clear picture of the positives and the gaps. If any major variation is found, it needs to be reported immediately, and corrective measures are to be taken accordingly.

Develop a process for escalation

The common cause of project delay is that important stakeholders and sponsors aren’t alerted about the issues until it is too late. Problems that can be solved by higher management often linger at the bottom of the organization for fear of rebuke or censure. Combat this situation by reporting an escalation process by starting up an escalation matrix as part of your project management plan. This matrix should have two major key components – process to identify the intensity and magnitude of the issue, and escalation path for the different issue levels.

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