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Missing Project Deadlines

The following is an excerpt from a book written by Sanjiv Purba and Joseph Zucchero, published by McGraw-Hill/Osborne, 2100 Powell Street, 10th Floor, Emeryville, California 94608 U.S.A. Sanjiv has over 20 years of experience managing large projects and many years engaged in rescuing ailing projects.

"Project deadlines are always going to be missed for a multitude of reasons that include poor planning, unforeseen events, and business complexity. You can make the statement that deadlines must be met because they are important- but you would be fooling yourself. However, not sticking to a deadline, or continually pushing it off, results in highly undesirable team behaviors. If your team is missing deadlines repeatedly, what makes you think this behavior is going to change? Are the problems typical of the entire project or are they limited to one or more of the earlier phases only? Where's the accountability? Having no deadline also shows a lack of discipline.

Always break deliverables down so that something of value and something that is measurable is produced within two-week increments - sooner if the risks on the project are deemed to be very high. Manageable deliverables make monitoring simpler and enable risk to be addressed on a consistent basis."