I have worked with many small business owners on projects ranging from product launches to website development, moving premises to planning a social media strategy. I am often called in after the project fails or needs to catch up. Time and again, I see business owners making the same mistakes on projects, usually as they are rushing to get results. Here are the 5 mistakes I see most often:
#1 Don’t Assess The Feasibility Of The Project
A project should not be undertaken just because you want it done and believe it is a good idea.
It is easy to get excited by a new idea or project, But take a step back and determine your requirements, assumptions, risks and constraints.
#2 Focus On The Execution, Not The Planning
A common mistake is that a business owner launches into a project with the mindset that the project will show results from the get-go. If this is the mindset going into the project, it is highly likely to fail.
Spending more time and money on planning and initiating a project increases the likelihood of it succeeding. Rushed projects rarely succeed the first time, which means more cost in rectifying mistakes.
#3 Unrealistic Schedules
We all want projects completed in the fastest amount of time, but it will take a lot of work. Yes, spending time to initiate & plan DOES help; however, it is impossible to predict everything that could happen.
Ask your contractors about their typical delivery time, and then add wiggle room. If your contractor cannot deliver on time, it’s not the end of the world because you have already scheduled a buffer for it.
#4 Neglecting stakeholders
We see this time and time again. By definition, a stakeholder is someone whose interest could be impacted positively or negatively by the project.
Stakeholders can be internal or external to the project.
It would be best to determine how the project will impact each stakeholder and how to manage their expectations. Good communication is key to a good project.
#5 Vague Scope
You might have a clear picture in your head of your vision; however, this needs to be detailed to all your stakeholders.
From what your project success looks like to each step needed to achieve that success. Take the time to document your project fully to have a roadmap to success.