Obviously, a project postmortem will not improve the project that just ended, but it can certainly improve future projects within that organization, if conducted with integrity. Most organizations tend to want the team to wrap up the project with a retrospective assessment of what caused the good and poor outcomes. The easiest (i.e., most uncontroversial) assessments are those which relate to only the technical issues encountered. These typically lead to systemic improvements to the product development process, and most of them were likely to have been acted upon at the time the issues surfaced. The harder (i.e., most controversial and politically sensitive) assessments relate to managerial and organizational missteps, but this category of assessment is extremely valuable relative to the pursuit of project management “best practices”. The team and performing organizations may be tempted to leave out certain incriminating or embarrassing issues, especially if no specific guidelines for addressing all potential causes of unsuccessful project execution are established for the postmortem processes undertaken. In my book “Project Risk Management: A Practical Implementation Approach” I offer up some practical solutions to these type of issues. I also present an “Instrument” for conducting a postmortem assessment of multiple similar types of projects – which has proven to lead to significant improvements in actual organizations. Such an approach can be of great benefit to companies dedicated to “doing more with less” in a serious attempt to bolster their competitive position within the markets they serve.
The objective of this series of posts is to provide insights into the breadth of Holistic Project Risk Management, especially as it relates to satisfying an organization’s objective to “Do More with Less” – which, if done well will improve the organization’s business success. The plan is to provide 2 posts per week over the course of 10 weeks. Thus, there will be time in between topics to comment and/or reach out to the author for clarification or further requests. Past posts will be assembled and stored on the Build2Scale.net website for future reference.
My text book “Project Risk Management: A Practical Implementation Approach” can be purchased via the following link: