Spotting a failing project

How do you identify a failing project?? Back on May 1, I wrote about why software projects fail. Thanks for the response to the post and the suggestions. Here is a great companion piece from Rick Cook writing for CIO – How to Spot a Failing Project.  Rick introduces this paper by optimistically saying that project managers are getting better and more sophisticated at managing software development. However, even today according to Rick, only one-third of all projects are considered complete successes. He believes that a key to successful project management is to spot problems early while there is still time for course corrections.

I highly recommend his entire article. Here is a peek at a few of his potential pending-failure metrics:

  • Lack of interest including missed meetings, not participating in discussions, or not paying attention
  • A “No-Bad-News” environment
  • Lots of overtime
  • Diversion of resources
  • Missing intermediate milestones

If you have a favorite “tell” that makes you uneasy about a project’s success or failure, please share.

 

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