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Jul 9th, 2009 | By | Category: Items for Project Managers

Mountain Byways

Mountain Byways

What could be better than to start our conversations than with some project management axioms that have been around for years? This list below is liberally borrowed from Tony Collins’s IT Projects Blog. At the end of the list is a link to Tony’s original blog.

My favorite is probably number eight. How many times have we worked on projects, begged for resources, analyzed risks, and then had to respond to someone who insists that their change must go into the current release?

  1. Projects with realistic budgets and timetables don’t get approved
  2. Activity in the early stages should be dedicated to finding the correct questions
  3. The more desperate the situation the more optimistic the progress report
  4. A user is somebody who rejects the system because it’s what he asked for
  5. The difference between project success and failure is a good PR company
  6. Nothing is impossible for the person who doesn’t have to do it
  7. Every failing, overly ambitious project, has at its heart a series of successful small ones trying to escape
  8. A freeze on change melts whenever heat is applied
  9. There’s never enough time to do it right first time
  10. You understood what I said, not what I meant
  11. If you don’t know where you’re going, just talk about specifics
  12. If at first you don’t succeed, rename the project
  13. Everyone wants a strong project manager – until they get him
  14. Only idiots own up to what they really know (thank you to President Nixon)
  15. The worst project managers sleep at night
  16. A failing project has benefits which are always spoken of in the future tense
  17. Projects don’t fail in the end; they fail at conception
  18. Visions are usually treatable
  19. Overly ambitious projects can never fail if they have a beginning, middle and no end
  20. In government we never punish error, only its disclosure
  21. The most difficult way is, in the long run, the easiest
  22. A realist is one who’s presciently disappointed in the future

Tony’s original blog can be found here: Top Tips for Project Managers

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