I’ve been lucky enough to be involved in quite a few of projects. I do like projects there is always something that makes them unique and they add to the entertainment or nonsense of life ….. people, subject, location. I bought a plane for a project once, second time I had to I left it to someone else! They’re quite cheap considering, but difficult to park!
One obvious thing that happens, is that when projects don’t go to plan (and most projects don’t go exactly as planned for various reasons) they become challenging. Sometimes problem gets acknowledged and it’s not so bad, but the more difficult problems are magnified by being ignored, lost in the multiple other things to do, in the hope they can be rectified by someone else.
I’ve been as guilty of ignoring a problem as the next person and sometimes patience is a virtue … but more often than not hope is a killer. Hope that somehow carrying on the same, will produce different results and that the project will suddenly be back on track. The end date stays the same, but you’ve lost four weeks and somehow you will make that time up or maybe hope there is something in the contract that was overlooked so you can somehow claw lost cash back.
Sometimes you get lucky, but the law of probability is that you will not rectify the full problem … (as boring as it sounds and as much as you want to be the superhero) …. It’s better to accept what’s done is done, report and readjust to what is achievable based on what is likely to happen moving forward. As good as you are, you probably won’t claw the program back eg. you won’t complete furnishing and commissioning 50 rooms in 2 weeks when you’ve only completed 10 in 1 so far. You won’t claw the budget back and be able to save 100% on a contract cost that was missed in the quote. Even if you think you are superman (read 5 ways a project leak profits)
You’ll waste more money by throwing more effort and time at the problem and exasperate the issue by trying to overturn the probability. Yes, mitigate the best you can, but you should be doing the best you can anyway!
So … if you find your project up the creek without a paddle …. Don’t hope a paddle will turn up!
The chances of you drifting past a paddle shop are very slim .. yes it may happen!! … if you wait, the hope will kill you as you drift off the edge of a waterfall …. It’s better to accept your problem sooner rather than later. Maybe make a rudder out of something and try and divert away from the danger.
Too much of a metaphor … probably …. but I like it, hope you do to. This is first principle thinking and will save you money in the long run!
Hi I'm Simon. I've worked in projects for a while now, either management or design. I love projects but they're frustrating. Hope some of this help you.