~ By Howard Vaughan
Among all the tools at our disposal for managing projects, checklists are perhaps the simplest and most productive means of building consistency in work practices. Checklists are useful in almost every field of human endeavour, and in particular where repeatability and systematic action drive performance. Yet they are still much underused in the planning and managing of projects.
Here is a high level twelve-point checklist for use during project planning:
One of the features of checklists is that they can be designed to extend hierarchically, such that a sub-checklist could be developed to facilitate any or all of the checks above (e.g. a stakeholder analysis checklist or a risk management checklist). The PMI, training firms and PMOs would do well to promote checklists more strongly - project managers like to use checklists; not many want to read through an overweight methodology. And managers like checklists because they improve quality and instil consistency.
Howard Vaughan is an accomplished project management consultant, trainer, coach and speaker. He has created and delivered high impact solutions for dozens of companies seeking excellence in project planning and execution worldwide.