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In Project Management, The Worst Project Plan is No Plan

In Project Management, The Worst Project Plan is No Plan. In Project Management nowadays we continue seeing many organizations facing changes without a clear defined Project Plan.

Sometimes we can find this lack of project plans when facing these changes, because they call it working “initiatives”. So many companies do a follow up of those initiatives only as a status report (with simple status as “defined”, “working progress” or “completed”). 

Leading change only with a list of initiatives and a status report is the best option when one wants to fail. Because in Project Management there is a very simple principle: Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail.

There are no excuses for non planning. It doesn’t matter if one uses Agile methods or others. Also in Agile approaches it is required to perform a high-level project plan. Because we need to adjust for scope of tasks, time efforts and budget.

The more detailed the plan, the more clear one knows how to perform the required project. When a project is managed on the go, this reflects that anyone knows the purpose and requirements of what is expected. And if the objectives and scope of the project were not clear, it is impossible to measure if they were accomplished. So, in this case, the only success completion measure of the project are subjective opinions and feelings.

Managing Feelings is the most complex managerial environment a Project Manager can face. Every person has the right of having his/her own opinion. People have opinions, that’s how it works. Also, every person expects different results or has a different way of understanding acceptance.

The only way to control a project is through changing opinion of what the project should be by writing down detailed requirements and building a Project Plan to accomplish them.

If there is a bad Project Plan, there are ways to improve it later. The Change Control Board (CCB) will meet and new project management Baselines can be drawn-up and published. But if there is no plan in a project, there is no way to improve it. Simply put, there is no project. In this case, there are only people doing whatever they have understood to be done, and no way to compare and contrast at the end if they completed what was required.

Have you ever seen facing change without a plan?

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