Crunch time

All project managers know the demands--both the professional and the personal--of working against tight schedules. But when project managers and project teams must continuously work overtime to meet unrealistic deadlines, they will not only lose interest in their work, they will often burnout. Some may also express dissent; some may leave. Many will probably perform below their abilities. This article discusses how project managers can avoid the pressure of continuously working long hours to meet tight deadlines. In doing so, it describes several approaches that project managers have successfully used to keep their projects on-track without over-burdening their project teams. It also overviews some of the reasons that can cause a project to slip behind schedule. It then identifies a few of the issues and tactics that can help project managers better manage their project schedules. Accompanying this article is a sidebar listing ten factors that most often cause project failure.
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