Pitfalls of Project Management – Scope & Time

– Written by Lok Kian Guan, PMP, Prince2, Itil V3, Comptia Project+, SCEA
PMP Trainer / Project Manager

I would like to share a bit on my experience on the pitfalls of project management. Hope that it will be a pre-emptive warning to project managers out there and allow them to circumvent and reduce less pain in their project management. I would like to touch on 2 aspects in this short article.

Have you heard of the normal phrase that “My customer is always adding scope to my project work! Its delaying the project!” Familiar? In Project Management, this kind of problem normally results from an uncontrolled scope project environment.

Imagine you have a deadline to meet and the customer is asking you to do more and more things which deviates or expanded significantly from what was agreed initially. The results are your project deadline will have a high probability of being overdue, workers are tired out and the cost-benefit value of doing this project may not be attractive eventually.

This is one pitfall.

Next, lets talk about Time. As we all know, one of the challenges in project management is a tight timeline to follow. Take for example again, a 200 man-hours estimated task need to be completed in 80 hours as demanded by the customers. What will u do as a project manager?

Please do ponder for a while on the question. Normally, a project manager may try to ask his/her project team to work harder or do overtime in order to rush out the delivery.

Is this the best solution? I have a past colleague whom worked overtime till the next morning without rest, as a result he was burnt out and he tendered his resignation the next following day. Imagine all the trainings for the team member has gone to waste for the project.

The project manager will have one headcount down and need to go through recruitment process and training again for the new person. With this headcount down, means it will more load distributed to the rest of the team members and this will create a chain reaction and loss of morale and efficiency.

This is another pitfall.

So, two pitfalls have been highlighted. Be wary of them and not to step onto it.

I will continue on the next article on other pitfalls (Cost and Communications) of project management. I will also have another article thread on how to counter every pitfall that I have listed..

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