Check Project Work

Configure Your Project for Success.

 ​Checklists help reduce project failure by compensating for human memory and attention limits and ensuring execution consistency and completeness.

 ​Checklists provide rigor and discipline to ensure necessary components and actions to achieve quality outcomes.

 ​Use checklists to raise effectiveness and reduce errors dramatically.

Minimum Checklist

Here's a minimum business team checklist for successfully initiating and executing a project.


The list may not be new to many experienced project practitioners. While much of the checklist may be present in a project, it's the quality and rigor of the engagement that matters.

Outcome: Business outcomes are specified, measurable, and understood.

Solution: A clear, precise solution is specified and understood by all project constituents.

Investment: The business case is detailed, measurable, and directly linked to the project solution.


If any of these first four checklist items are absent, poorly defined, or not aligned with constituents, stop the project process and work with leadership to establish those elements before proceeding.

Why start a project when:

An organization will waste scarce resources (people, time, CAPEX/OPEX) and emotional energy without a precise outcome, sponsor, solution, and investment plan.

Communication: Constituents practice open, candid communication and conflict resolution.

Communication is particularly important when ...

There's bad news to report. Team members need to feel safe communicating their actual status rather than what people want to hear.

Half the battle to achieve successful project outcomes is dealing with reality, no matter how unpleasant.

All projects will have moments of “unpleasant reality.”

  • How leadership and team members respond will determine a project's success.
  • One of the most critical tasks in running a successful project is effectively dealing with reality and promptly resolving issues, problems, and conflicts.

Plan: A fact-based plan is being followed.

Think of methodology as a recipe for doing successful projects.

Organization: Establish the right organization to plan and execute the project.

Execution: Success mandates effective and efficient execution.

Technology: Use technology that is consistent with your organization's standards.

Most poets write happy, whimsical, and meaningful prose. Others write dark, scary, and depressing prose.

Projects that fail deliver dark, scary, and depressing prose from a business impact and professional career perspective. Avoid that prose by thinking about the OSSICPOET™.