When you are short of time, here is the one action that will give you 80 percent results in 20 percent of the time.
Calculate the minimum time required and add a 10% contingency before setting a deadline.
BY DOING THIS
– List all required activities.
– Estimate the time required for each.
– Add 10% to account for delays and emergencies.
Project timelines include end dates of all activities and those of the tasks required to complete them. For example, new software training must be completed on the 30th because the system is going live on the 10th of the following month.
An inherent risk of interconnected deadlines is that one unrealistic deadline for an activity cascades through all the task deadlines leading up to it, regardless of how much time is necessary to complete them. It only takes one miscalculation to fail to meet a plan timeline. Many people respond to unrealistic deadlines with reckless optimism. They cut corners, eliminate steps or shorten timelines without understanding the impacts of their choices. Before they’ve even begun, they’ve added risk to their plan and are in jeopardy of failing.
The best timeline planning approach is to map out the minimum time required to achieve all your tasks and activities. These facts are your best defence against unrealistic expectations. You might not get all the time you need, but you will get more than the original estimate, and leaders will now co-own the time risks.
Don’t explain in detail why you did what you did. It’ll sound like you’re making excuses and take focus away from how you are fixing the mistake.
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