If there’s one truth you need to know about IT projects, it’s this: They’re not created equal. There are countless stories where all efforts went up in flames even before the software went live. The risk is multiplied by ten if you’re an entrepreneur who knows little to nil of what your project is all about. Just how can you spot signs that your IT project is failing? When prevention is better than a cure, you need to check your project’s health and be proactive in looking for red flags – so you can walk away and minimize damages. Besides, your business depends on it too.
Making Decisions Smarter, Faster & Intuitive
Last time, I have shared with you my thoughts on rapid iterations, to have a radical approach so you can fail fast and small. The trouble is that you think it’s just too late to quit and so you struggle on a long and winding road that seems to lead you nowhere with your IT project. The early signs that your project is doomed are really hard to measure objectively, but it’s not easy to spot if you keep an open eye and see these signs:
1. Lack – As in lack of interest among your team or stakeholders, lack of speed in moving the project forward, lack of good communication, lack of metrics, lack of detailed plans, lack of consistent management or lack of success in each milestone you’ve set..
2. Scope Creep – In relation to the first item, the project takes more resources, money and time to get done than you have originally planned for.
3. Testing Later (or Never) – You have a great idea and testing if it works is essential to its success. You should test in all scenarios and gather data, whether it yields good or bad results. There’s little to zero involvement with real users (or representatives in multiple departments for bigger companies).
4. No Plan B – Just like in life, things can go wrong. If your IT project don’t have a recovery/risk management plan, you’re up for a big trouble. Many who failed were too excited to go live only to hit serious downtime without ever having to recover.
5. 80/20 – As in 80% issues and 20% resolution. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that something is wrong when more problems pile up instead of being resolved.
For the same way that these signs are contributing to the wide gap between IT and business, you must see signs of distress where your IT project is concerned so you can take action while there’s still time. You may even invite an expert to give you sound advice so you can make informed decisions without having to lose a lot.
Now, the only thing you have to deal with is your ego. Are you willing to let go of that idea when dire circumstances are calling for it?