Causes for Project Failure Essay

Submitted By rembim
Words: 2420
Pages: 10

‘The main cause of project failure is a weak system of communications between the project stakeholders’. Discuss.
There are many things that could go wrong during the lifecycle of a project which can subsequently cause the failure of the project and one very important factor is poor or ineffective communication system between the different project stakeholders. There is always need to keep everyone informed about changes, assumptions, requirements, standards, budgets, costs, and the schedule of the project and if effective communication is lacked then one can conclude that the project is already heading for a failure even before the completion of the project.
Project failure can mean different things to different stakeholders of a project but according to Pinto and Mantel (1990), Project failure depends on the three distinct aspects of project performance (outcome) which were identified as benchmarks against which to assess the success or failure of a project. These aspects are: 1) the implementation process itself; 2) the perceived value of the project; and 3) client satisfaction with the delivered project. (Pinto and Mantel, 1990).
Communication breakdown can be due to lack of planning and poor quality control. Communication is highly essential for any project and all the parties involved succeeding. Communication plays a very important role on the outcome of any project. As it relates to project management, communication can include how to generate, collect, distribute, store, and retrieve information on the project. Therefore, Communication can be termed as how readily the project team provided information. (Maylor, H. 2010). In analyzing the top ten causes of project management failures, Chris Anderson stated that the first major cause of project management failure is bad communication (Chris Anderson, 2012). He suggested that developing a good visual management system would be a tremendous benefit to any project manager.
Furthermore, if the communication is not managed properly it can lead to a project being collapsed or abandoned. It-cortex, 2012 summarised the different causes of project failure as illustrated in figure 1 and ‘bad communication among related parties’ was rated as the number one cause of project failure. Therefore efficient and effective communication is needed in a project not only by the project manager but also the different stakeholders of the potential project must invest in it. (See appendix for the figure).
In a project management, communication cannot function without the project manager and if the manager does not possess the skills required of him or her, the project will always be a failure. Project management is a method and a set of techniques based on the accepted principles of management used for planning, estimating, and controlling work activities to reach a desired end result on time, within budget and controlling to specification. (Wysocki, et al. 2000). Therefore, project management can be termed as a model of five phrases use to establish a project, such as; scope the project, develop the detailed plan, launch the plan, monitor and control progress, and close out the project. In essence, all these models are based on planning and planning cannot work without been communicated properly to the parties involved. Communication in project management has its inevitable and irreplaceable essential role. (Wysocki, et al. 2000).
The project manager in addition to the preparation of a good communication plan must also understand how to manage team, and how to meet the needs of customer, standing on the roles of stakeholders, so as to achieve a successful project targets. The key thing every project manager should consider and carefully implement is to ensure that the project greatly meet customers’ needs and guide the project towards the goal of success. A project is bound to fail if each stakeholder does not know how to communicate with each other. Hence for any given project, it is