General Project Management Issues

Project management can be a very challenging work that needs a high level of knowledge and expertise to manage the projects and deliver it with high quality as per the set timeline. But despite having all completed the project within the stipulated time frame and withing the budget they often fail and do not deliver the expected results. So let’s explore some of the general project management issues:

Poor Planning

The foremost reason for a project to fail is the lack of proper planning and execution. So what leads to poor planning of a project? This includes not having a proper business plan, not breaking down the development phases, lack of task prioritizations, also using the traditional project models, and not following current agile project management trends. The Gallup Business Journal shows the fact that out of 10,640 projects from 200 organizations in 30 countries only 2.5% of all projects were completed. So this is the most critical factor to be considered by the project manager to avoid project failures. (Benoit Hardy-Vallee, FEBRUARY 7, 2012). As rightly quoted by Winston Churchill, “Let your advance worrying become advance thinking and planning”.

Unrealistic Goals

This is the trait followed by many project managers which leads to the maximum number of project failures. Just to make the clients happy they tend to set up unrealistic goals without even setting up the scope, short-term, and long-term goals and thus often lose track of how the project is proceeding with regards to time and cost. The project manager often fails to define the realistic project milestones to measure the progress thus leading to miscommunications and confusion among the team members. The project managers can make use of the SMART Rules (Wilson, 2020) for goal setting which makes it easier to know when the objectives will be achieved.

Insufficient Communication

Inadequate or miscommunication can impact team collaboration and project delivery. The communication must be prompt and mostly transparent to avoid any barriers to project implementation. The client requirements and changes must be discussed clearly in the daily scrum meetings or weekly sprints. This helps the team to address any major issues or modifications early in the project than waiting until the project is close to its deadline. According to a report every year, poor communication costs small businesses with under 100 employees $420,000 and companies with over 100,000 employees over $62 million. (Stone, 2020)

Improper Expenses

Inaccurate project estimates are one of the common parameters for project failures. The improper estimates include a lack of accurate budget estimation with regards to equipment, resources, software, contingencies, travel, consultancy fees, and many other purchases. This budgeting task is one of the major road black sot successful implementations. So the project managers must adapt the current project management tools like Asana, Basecamp, Trello, Jira, Wrike, etc to calculate the project estimates correctly and monitor the project costs to be on schedule. (LEIS, 2020)

Risk Mismanagement

Even the well-planned project often fails so in this case how do we handle the unforeseen risks? We need to have a foresight of identifying the” what-if” scenarios and building proper contingency plans against it. In this case, the project manager must be vigilant to come up with a plan b strategy if he notices the project isn’t going as planned. Using the different risk management tools like brainstorming, root cause analysis, a swot analysis can help the managers to identify and mitigate risks even before surfacing. (Westland, 2019)

Unrealistic Deadlines

The project manager gives unrealistic deadlines to the project teams which is often impossible to achieve, this severely affects the team’s morale and the quality of the end product delivered. An unrealistic deadline puts a lot of pressure on the team and often leads to project failure. So for this, the project manager needs to identify the team’s capacity and accordingly negotiate the project deadline after prioritizing all the project tasks and setting up milestones. To overcome this agile project management can be used as in that the manager sets the velocity which is the measurement of the work completed in a single sprint by taking into consideration all the stakeholder inputs and changes. The project managers can use timing management tools such as Gantt charts, Pert charts, work breakdown structures (WBS), etc. which will help them to stay on schedule and thus avoid project delays in advance.

So these are some of the general issues project management issues that need to taken care of to have a smooth and quality project delivery on time.


  1. LEIS, M., 2020. [Online] 

    Available at:

  2. Stone, K., 2020. The State of Project Management in 2020 [42 Statistics]. [Online Available at
  3. Westland, J., 2019. [Online] Available at
  4. Wilson, F., 2020. [Online Available at 


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