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Setting and Managing Project Expectations

April 10, 2011

One of the most important and challenging tasks of the Project and Program Manager is to set and manage the expectations of their stakeholders throughout the project and program life cycle.  It requires clear, concise, 2-way communication.  It is not enough to send out messages without gathering feedback to determine if the message is clear and understood.

We set the stage for project expectations during project or program initiation and planning.  Using SMARTER objectives and clearly identifying the who, what, where, when, how and why of the project or program objectives, we improve all stakeholders’ understanding of the expected outcomes, which helps keep the project on track and moving forward.

I have listed several other resources for setting project expectations below:

Setting the Stage for Success: Put Expectations in Light

The Importance of Setting Customer Expectations

The Secret to Better Managing Project Expectations

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Balaji Prasad permalink
    June 30, 2011 4:55 pm

    Agreed … managing expectations is crucial. However it is a 2 way street where the program/project manager should be fed information on the changing expectations or risks from entities that are outside her scope of influence. This means that executives, marketing, manufacturing or customer account teams should have a dynamic communication channel where they are negotiating with the project manager on alternate outcomes or tradeoffs if the project is not proceeding as per plan.

    • June 30, 2011 8:36 pm

      Hello and thanks for your feedback. I agree completely. Communication is an enterprise-wide responsibility.


  1. Engaging Your Stakeholders « Martin Webster, Esq.

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