This two-part paper was submitted
for publication October 22, 2008, and is reprinted with permission.
It is copyright to J. LeRoy Ward and ESI International.
Published here March 2009.
Program Management Challenges
First though, I think it is important to discuss the many challenges associated with program management. According to Gartner, "Sixty-six percent of large program initiatives fail to achieve their business objectives. Further, they are delivered late or substantially over budget". Most of these failures are people-related and can be traced back to:
- Underestimating program complexity
- Lack of firm leadership, commitment and sponsorship
- Poor cross-functional communication
- Lack of integrated planning
- No defined success metrics
- Poor requirements management
- Lack of broad change management
- Misaligned stakeholder expectations
- Inadequate program management skills
- Lack of resources
Therefore, the following ten steps are designed to help mitigate or eliminate each of these troublesome areas.