Phasing and Staging

Drew is a former IT practitioner, project and program manager and software development executive. He is the owner of Davison Consulting and the author of Project Pre-Check, the stakeholder practice for successful business and technology change, an innovative approach that delivers major business and technology change successfully.

Your organization is undertaking a major new project that will have a significant impact across the board. If we know anything about project risk, we know the bigger they are the harder they fail. What can you do to improve your chances of success? Here are some approaches to consider that will ensure your organization gets value out of the undertaking.

 
This is the eighth article in a series on best practices for managing change initiatives. Instead of focusing on common, if still misunderstood, techniques such as business cases, risk management and change control, this series explores some lesser known and underused practices that can make a fundamental difference to the success of a project.
 
The September 2006 issue of Baseline Magazine included an article on the Top 10 Project Pitfalls You Can Avoid. Number 1 on the list? A project's scope is too monolithic and gargantuan. Here’s the example they used:
 
In 2001, McDonald's planned to spend $1 billion over five years to tie all of its operations into a real-time digital network. Eventually, executives in company headquarters would have been able to see how soda dispensers and frying machines in every store were performing, at any moment. But after just two years, the fast-food giant threw in the towel.
 
There are, unfortunately, thousands of other recent…

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