With a high-pressure project, a tremendous amount of risk can come with the endeavor. It is important to have a proper risk management strategy in place before undertaking the project.
The following are some strategies that can help you manage your risks effectively:
1. Analyze Potential Risks
Before beginning any high-pressure project, it is essential to take an inventory of all potential risks. This could include financial, legal, and operational risks. Identify and address any critical points in the project immediately to mitigate these risks.
Next Action: Develop your RAID log. (RAID = Risks, Assumptions, Issues, Dependencies)
2. Develop Contingency Plans
Once potential risks have been identified, develop contingency plans to cover all potential outcomes. These plans should be regularly monitored and updated throughout the duration of the project. Having multiple contingency plans will help ensure you can handle any unexpected events that may occur during the course of your project.
Next Action: Create a RACI chart. (RACI = Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, Informed)
3. Prioritize Critical Tasks
High-pressure projects often require prioritizing specific tasks over others to achieve key objectives. Identify which tasks must be completed first in order for other goals to be met and prioritize these accordingly. This will ensure that no time is wasted on tasks that are not necessary for meeting end goals.
Next Action: Utilize Critical Path Method (CPM) to prioritize each task with attributes such as owner, dependency, and duration.
4. Leverage Technology
Technology can play an important role in mitigating risk when working on high-pressure projects. Automation solutions can help streamline processes and reduce manual labor, cutting down on errors and improving accuracy when dealing with large amounts of data or transactions. Additionally, secure cloud computing systems provide extra protection against tampering as well as support distributed teams across multiple geographies.
Next Action: Agree upon a centrally accessible tool to capture Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) in a way that keeps everyone alignment, informed, and engaged with the project and their role and responsibilities.
By taking these steps, organizations can better manage their risk while still achieving their objectives on time and under budget. By properly allocating time and energy to plan projects beforehand, you can confidently navigate complex opportunities and uncertainty more effectively.
Ben Stroup is Chief Growth Architect and President at Velocity Strategy Solutions where he helps leaders design, develop, and deploy smarter business growth strategies. Ben is a futurist, disruptor, and data champion. He leads a team that takes a structured learning approach to business challenges, which allows them to assist leaders in bridging the gap between ideas, innovation, and revenue—taking ideas from mind to market.
Velocity Strategy Solutions is an on-demand, next-generation business strategy and management consulting firm which provides clients with a relentless focus on data, execution, and results that positively impact the bottom line. Velocity delivers integrated people and revenue strategies combined with a disciplined approach to growth architecture that elevates the capacity of leaders, teams, and organizations to succeed and win more.