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Why Do Projects Fail?

Updated: Nov 9, 2022

One of the most common questions I hear when companies start a new project is, “Why do projects fail?”

It’s a valid question, and one I am sure you’ve asked yourself.

I wish I had a complex or fancy answer. But the answer is quite simple, success is a choice.

Most people do not want to hear this, but it’s the truth. Success is a choice. As leaders we can choose to be successful or not. In our projects, we can let the nay sayers tell us what can and can’t be done or we can commit to accomplishing our goals.

As I’ve said in an earlier Marty’s Minute, business would be easy if people weren’t involved. But they are, and we have to deal with that reality accordingly.

Over the past few years, I have had the opportunity to work with different projects where the team was about to give up on the product. They were at the point where they were ready to throw it away and buy a new product.

When we started digging deeper into the issue, we found that the real problems were not with the software and the project but in the way the project was perceived. They tried to make the current project just like the last project because they were in search of familiarity.

Unfortunately, we can be victims of our past. We want to take the future and make it look like our past. When we do this, we inadvertently cause our projects to flounder and not meet expectations.

When you look at your project, don’t just think about it as a list full of features and tasks. Don’t expect it to be just like your old project.

Instead, think about the opportunities the new product presents to the organization and then get your team to rally around that. I believe this mentality will get you the results you were looking for in your project.

Until next time...I’m Marty, make every minute count.


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