Agile Thinking

Executive Steps That Lead to Teams Missing Deadlines

Do you often feel that your team members do not care if they are missing deadlines? If you have set deadlines, do you ensure the team meets them? Most managers think team members overshoot timelines when they are not really engaged with the project. Is that so? In her blog article, Johanna Rothman shares how management can be the reason why teams are missing deadlines.

Reasons for Missing Deadlines

Upper management wants to deliver products to their clients, but they forget to enable the team. Executives ignore the fact that product or feature teams are much better at producing deliverables than the component crew. If you are working with services departments, overshooting the timeline is a given. The deadline extends further when each team is focusing on only one product. Unlike a cross-functional crew, these teams are not looking to achieve a singular objective—to complete the whole product.

More Mistakes

  • Do you use schedule variance for software development cycles? While it can be used to calculate how much the project has progressed, software products no longer have linear developments. The process does not consider continuous feedback or lessons learned either. Software cycles cannot be without these two elements. It worked in the past when development teams did not have to present working models during the process.
  • Executives want to reduce team burnout by implementing project portfolio management and reducing WIP. But they could not decide how they could address more significant issues alongside the regular ones.

You must realize that timelines are not the issue; not delivering value in your product is. Before you bench the team for missing deadlines, include the changes to streamline your PPM processes. Then work on the governance problems. Your teams will stop missing deadlines and produce valuable deliverables. Stakeholders will not ask about dead metrics like schedule variance once you have delivered what they wanted and more.

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