What if a Project Ends on Time?Muhammad Zeeshan Ali, PMP, PMI-ACP
Throughout my career, one question I have been asked many times, especially in interviews, that what will you do if an activity is late as per actual plan? To which I often respond that it is rare for projects not to face any delays and the question should be that “What will you do if a project ends on time?”
No matter how good you plan a project, it is most likely to face some sort of delay. What will be an uncommon situation is that when you planned something and it went as per plan. Well, I would say that if manager face such situation then there will be a really good list of lesson learned items.
I did shared in my other article “Lesson Learned from my Successful Project” regarding what I can summarize in terms of items that made that project successful. That list of success factors can be replicated to other projects to make them a success as well.
Generally there are few main things which you have learn from the successful projects:
Processes and Methodology
The methodology and processes used in a project are important because they are the basis for success of any project. There may be challenges in replicating all of them due to difference in dynamics of the two projects. They may differ in cost, schedule, different type of resources etc. but one thing is for sure that there is always something which you can partially or wholly implement in your current project. Also implementing something successful with different challenges will bring you more experience and reliability as well as different dimensions that methodology and processes.
Things to do and Things not to do
Another learning factor is the list of things to do with any project and things not to do in order to increase the success of a project. List may contain some useful things about the informal communication and teamwork etc. The list may also contain some activities, based on experience, which may not be generally taught in regular project management books.
Impact on 4 wives
As I discussed in my other article, “Big Love – The Lucky Guy with 4 Wives”, that how much challenges the Project Manager has to face to performing its duties. Certainly a situation with project ending on time is something with a very low frequency but this is the opportunity when the project manager really feels as the “King”. This is an opportunity when the project manager got to learn to handle fame and success.
The one person you cannot lie to is yourself and every success helps you gain self-recognition and self-respect which leads to elevation of your confidence level. This is important aspect which often goes unnoticed and that is the reason we always suggest to celebrate success in any magnitude possible. The recognition is important, no matter which channel it comes from and even taking some time to appreciate and celebrate success just by yourself is important.