10 Ways to Ensure Ultimate Project Success (Hint: Focus on Critical Path)
How can you lower the chances of project failure? Keep to the critical path. The critical path defines the main tasks that have the ability to delay the entire project and make it drift off the path. So, you have to find ways to ensure that the focus stays on the critical path. Some of the recommended steps are the following:
1. Inform your team members about the critical path
Your project team has to understand completely the critical path. There are always daily battles and de-focuses of the attention, but the team members should get into the thick of things. If they foresee the importance of the critical path, the project has a much larger chance of success.
2. Make a diagram of the critical path
In the Agile methods, it is recommended to visualize items. So it will become apparent to everyone what tasks are parts of the critical path and the progress on those tasks if you draw them as a diagram to gain attention and receive priority. You can display this diagram on the wall. Be creative in how you make the critical path visual.
3. Inform the CEO about the critical path
You have to inform your bosses and executives about the shape of the critical path. Sometimes, when you decide to present the critical path clear to executives, the project will have a significantly greater chance of success. For example, if a team leader has an issue with a critical path part, the executives will approve the critical path if they foresee the significance.
4. Critical path transition
If you need to switch from one critical path task to another, decide what an easy transition will be. It would be good if you have a plan worked out in advance and know all tasks so that you can make up time or modify based on the critical path task before or after it. You must consider the importance of team collaboration.
5. Inform the task owners about the starting dates
The project manager should inform the task owners about the critical path prior to their task inception. They should know about resources, potential congestion, etc. You will see that critical path makes owners foresee many of the possible issues in advance; however, if they don’t ask, they might not be communicating them. Ask questions in advance.
6. Remind task owners just prior to starting dates
Even if you discussed with the task owner the upcoming tasks, is doesn’t mean they will remember about it at the correct time. Usually, task owners have a lot of duties and responsibilities. You have to provide a personal reminder for each task owner.
7. Critical path milestones
Even if you get in the middle of a bunch of tasks and long agendas, you must keep your eyes on your critical path steps. You have to identify tasks that are very important and significant for the output. You should keep in mind these actions that will contribute significantly to the fulfillment of critical path events.
8. Monitor metrics
As with all projects and business, you have to involve the metrics. The core metrics should be obtained to get a feel for whether the critical path is on track and whether the project team is accomplishing tasks well include durations, resources, etc.
9. Critical path completion meeting
If you want to ensure communication throughout the critical path, you have to hold a post-task meeting. You have to point out the successful practices that improved the result. If you obtain good feedback, you can include it into next critical path tasks. You should not wait until the next project.
10. Final result
Finally, you have to remember that you must be getting closer to the end result of the project. No matter if you have 3 or 300 tasks, it won’t be relevant until the end result appears.
Since CEO-s consider projects the main factor of growing the business and producing bottom line results, remaining focused on the most important tasks to achieve these results is crucial. You have to adopt these strategies to keep focused on the critical path and continually search for additional options. Success will come.