Why projects fail

Times of change

The market environment is becoming more and more dynamic and production and development cycles are becoming shorter and shorter. Many organisations feel the pressure to change.

Often the cause lies in the set-up of the organisation, entrenched structures and protracted processes.

It is not that the big players in the market are overthrowing the smaller ones. Rather, more and more agile companies are managing to overtake the big and immobile ships.

Many project teams lack direction and vision for what they are doing. Instead, detailed project plans are created and adjusted over and over again - without generating any added value.

The beginning of the end

Many companies have a confusing number of launched projects. Organisations launch them when they are facing a change or task that is outside of their operational business.

Usually there are certain stakeholders in the company who particularly want to drive the project. Thus, a project is set up and scheduled with optimistic assumptions. The scope and extent of the project and the resources expected to be needed are determined in advance.

Most project members are highly motivated and enthusiastic at the start of the project. The teams form and get down to work. And then, somehow and somewhere along the way, things take a different direction.Deadlines cannot be met. The results do not match the expectations of those involved.

The project fails in the eyes of the management level because it does not achieve the goal or does not deliver what was asked for within the resources, budget and time.

IT Project Team

You want to save your organisation from the beginning of the end? Are you looking for ways to get a grip on chaos? Focus and structure are the success factors for your project.

"Those who plan are better than those who do not plan. Even if they seldom stick to their plan -
Winston Churchill".

Reasons for project failure



Unclear goals: If project work starts without a clear project goal, it is guaranteed to fail. If the organisation does not know what is to be achieved, neither success nor failure can be measured.

Resource planning

Lack of resource planning: Organisations create detailed schedules with milestones, topics and interfaces. But with all this project planning, the crucial question is often forgotten: Who actually does the work? Who actually implements the project? If there is no manpower, the project plan put on paper drags on forever. After all, paper is patient.


Lack of project management tools: If the project and its tasks and deliverables are not transparent, failure to achieve this goal is inevitable.

It is important to set up a project management system that creates transparency , not only for the project manager, but for all team members. This includes task status, clear communication as well as good document management.


Lack of communication: Although everyone knows it, it is so often taken lightly: Communication in project management is key. The tools the team uses to communicate should be explained and implemented from the beginning of the project.

Project scope

Thescope of the project is constantly growing: starting with a simple customer request to add something here, a good idea from a colleague to change something there - the scope of the project grows quickly.

This happens for three reasons:
First, when the parameters of the project were not clearly defined. Second, when internal pressure is put on the teams. Thirdly, when the team starts to take on tasks from outside - for example from the client - that were not part of the original project scope.



Excessive optimism within the team or unrealistic expectations of stakeholders can jeopardise any project.

The project leader needs to provide a clear vision and picture of what the team can deliver and in what timeframe - all team members and stakeholders.