Four traps that can lead to project failure

Four traps that can lead to project failure

Project DPro, Project Management

Accountability for results trap

Lack of management capacity trap

Cultural trap

One-size-fits-all trap

According to statistics from several sources, there are between 39 to 64% of projects that result in failure and projects’ stakeholders are more dissatisfied than those that are satisfied (Ilk, 2012). This failure might either be with operational implementation as not meeting one of the three project constraints, i.e. project scope/quality, time frame or allocated budget; or by non-reaching the project impact, purposes and Goal. The project failure can be a result of several reasons, e.g. a wrong or impractical design, unclear project scope, lack of communications, overloaded project team, lack of stakeholder engagement, unrealistic appraisals, unrecognised potential risks, poor planning, absence of monitoring and controlling, and weak institutional capacity. Those reasons can be classified into three categories: context related problems, management capacity problems, and sustainability problem (Ilk, 2012). It is believed that those reasons for project failures are the results for failing into one of the following four traps that project managers might sink into: “the one-size-fits-all trap”, “the accountability for results trap”, “the lack of project management capacity trap”, and “the cultural trap” (Ilk, 2012). So, let us analysis more every one of those traps and try to suggest solutions that can mitigate the risk of failing in each one of them so that we can increase the likelihood for the project success.

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How to create and manage an Issue Log

How to create and manage an Issue Log

Project DPro, Project Management, Tools

Creating an Issue Log is an activity performed during project Implementation. The PMD Pro Guide defines an issue as:

An issue is an unresolved decision, situation or problem that will significantly impact the project and that the project team cannot immediately resolve.

The Issue Log is a tool for reporting and communicating designed to facilitate the timely resolution of issues. Without an issue log, it is possible to either ignore or forget about issues arising, only for those issues to have more serious consequences later on.

Please note that this is a resource available at the DPro+ platform. In order to access the DPro+ you must be Project DPro or Program DPro certified.

Click here to read this full guidance and access the series of “How to” guides available at the DPro+ platform.


The “How to” guides are booklets that present guidance and tips to develop some of the Project DPro and Program DPro tools. Some of the activities related to the project/program management routine are also included in the “How To” collection.

If you have an idea for a “How to” guide or you would like to write one, please contact our team and share your experience.

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How to create a Work Breakdown Structure

How to create a Work Breakdown Structure

Project DPro, Project Management, Tools

The Work Breakdown Structure maps out the scope of the project, the work required to complete the project’s deliverables and the project management work required. It is a hierarchical decomposition of the project’s work. The WBS helps you to divide project work into smaller pieces.

Please note that this is a resource available at the DPro+ platform. In order to access the DPro+ you must be Project DPro or Program DPro certified.

Click here to read this full guidance and access the series of “How to” guides available at the DPro+ platform.


The “How to” guides are booklets that present guidance and tips to develop some of the Project DPro and Program DPro tools. Some of the activities related to the project/program management routine are also included in the “How To” collection.

If you have an idea for a “How to” guide or you would like to write one, please contact our team and share your experience.

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How to create a Risk Register

How to create a Risk Register

Project DPro, Project Management, Tools

Creating a Risk Register is a key activity during project Set Up. During the Identification and Definition phase high-level risk analysis is performed, and during project set-up risks are analyzed and risk responses are put in place.

Please note that this is a resource available at the DPro+ platform. In order to access the DPro+ you must be Project DPro or Program DPro certified.

Click here to read this full guidance and access the series of “How to” guides available at the DPro+ platform.


The “How to” guides are booklets that present guidance and tips to develop some of the Project DPro and Program DPro tools. Some of the activities related to the project/program management routine are also included in the “How To” collection.

If you have an idea for a “How to” guide or you would like to write one, please contact our team and share your experience.

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How to create a RACI Diagram

How to create a RACI Diagram

Project DPro, Project Management, Tools

Creating a RACI Diagram is a key activity during project Planning and is a key output of this phase.

As the complexity of projects increases, the web of relationships expands until it could potentially include community groups, government ministries, suppliers, local non-governmental organizations, universities, faith-based organizations and others.

Due to this complexity it’s sometimes difficult to know who is in charge of performing different activities within the project, and who needs to be informed about the progress of those activities.

Please note that this is a resource available at the DPro+ platform. In order to access the DPro+ you must be Project DPro or Program DPro certified.

Click here to read this full guidance and access the series of “How to” guides available at the DPro+ platform.


The “How to” guides are booklets that present guidance and tips to develop some of the Project DPro and Program DPro tools. Some of the activities related to the project/program management routine are also included in the “How To” collection.

If you have an idea for a “How to” guide or you would like to write one, please contact our team and share your experience.

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How to create an Objectives Tree

How to create an Objectives Tree

Project DPro, Project Management, Tools

Creating an Objectives Tree is an activity performed during project Identification and Definition. It is the second step towards creating a logical framework for the project and enables you to consider a positive future state in the target community when your project has had beneficial results.

Please note that this is a resource available at the DPro+ platform. In order to access the DPro+ you must be Project DPro or Program DPro certified.

Click here to read this full guidance and access the series of “How to” guides available at the DPro+ platform.


The “How to” guides are booklets that present guidance and tips to develop some of the Project DPro and Program DPro tools. Some of the activities related to the project/program management routine are also included in the “How To” collection.

If you have an idea for a “How to” guide or you would like to write one, please contact our team and share your experience.

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Can development projects be Agile?

Can development projects be Agile?

Development Sector, Project DPro, Project DPro

What is the potential of Agile Project Management for the development and humanitarian sectors? This article investigates the compatibility between Project DPro and Agile PM.

The extent to which Agile PM could be useful in the humanitarian and development sectors remains largely unexplored. Originally conceived as a solution to problems presented by the traditional management of projects in software development, Agile has expanded to other sectors, and, in theory at least, can be used in any context.

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How to create a Problem Tree

How to create a Problem Tree

Project DPro, Project Management, Tools

Creating a Problem Tree is an activity performed during project Identification and Definition. It is the first step towards creating a logical framework for the project, to be followed by the creation of an Objectives Tree.

Please note that this is a resource available at the DPro+ platform. In order to access the DPro+ you must be Project DPro or Program DPro certified.

Click here to read this full guidance and access the series of “How to” guides available at the DPro+ platform.


The “How to” guides are booklets that present guidance and tips to develop some of the Project DPro and Program DPro tools. Some of the activities related to the project/program management routine are also included in the “How To” collection.

If you have an idea for a “How to” guide or you would like to write one, please contact our team and share your experience.

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How to perform a Change Control Process

How to perform a Change Control Process

Project DPro, Project Management, Tools

The Change Control Process is a process map that helps Project Managers make changes to the project plan. It is used in the Implementation phase of the project.

Please note that this is a resource available at the DPro+ platform. In order to access the DPro+ you must be Project DPro or Program DPro certified.

Click here to read this full guidance and access the series of “How to” guides available at the DPro+ platform.


The “How to” guides are booklets that present guidance and tips to develop some of the Project DPro and Program DPro tools. Some of the activities related to the project/program management routine are also included in the “How To” collection.

If you have an idea for a “How to” guide or you would like to write one, please contact our team and share your experience.

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Project Risk Identification and Management Post-Covid-19

Project Risk Identification and Management Post-Covid-19

COVID-19, Project DPro, Project DPro, Project Management

This is the third in a series of articles looking at the effects of Covid-19 on project management in the development and humanitarian sectors. For the second article in the series, visit:

Schedule and Time Management Post-Covid-19

Identification and management of risk is intrinsic and non-negotiable in project management, and certainly one area that will be irrevocably changed by the current health crisis. I believe we will change not the way in which risk is identified and assessed, but rather our relationship with risk.

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