Defining project objectives to achieve success

Planning and running any project without a clear goal or objective is pointless. It’s like planning a wedding without the groom or painting a picture without the paint. It’s impossible to do and you’ll never achieve the success that you’ve been looking for.

When it comes down to it, the goal and objective is the reason behind the project, it’s why everything has started to begin with. If they’re forgotten or an afterthought, there’s no purpose to the exercise.

For many, the need for an objective is obvious but for some, it’s a concept often forgotten.

Using project objectives

As a project manager, you’re used to the fast-paced environment that often requires you to dive headfirst into a project. In some instances, the objectives are not always obvious or communicated, which can be a problem.

This is why it’s important to jot down everything there is to know about a project beforehand to understand the requirements before dedicating time and effort to it. Without knowing what needs to be done and by when the efforts you put into it all will be wasted.

Types of project objectives

There are so many different objectives a project can have, but there are three main categories that you can use to group them. This includes:

  • Financial objectives- this looks at how the project will impact the finances of the business, after all it costs money to make money.
  • Quality objectives – this seeks to improve the quality of the goods or services currently on offer.
  • Technical objectives – This looks at the overall project management and how processes are being streamlined to achieve the best possible outcome.

Determining your project objectives

Okay, so you know what objectives are and how important they are for your project. But how do you actually go about defining them? Simple, be SMART.

The SMART best practices are the ultimate formula for determining project objectives. It states that:

  • It needs to be SPECIFIC
  • You need to be able to MEASURE the progress and success
  • It needs to be ATTAINABLE and realistic
  • The objective needs to be RELEVANT to your business
  • It needs to be Timebound and have a timeline for completion

So, for example, your objective should be something like: By Q2 we will reduce our abandoned cart rate by 5% by recreating the checkout process.

The simple truth of the matter is that your project needs objectives. You need to know what you’re working towards, otherwise, what is the point?

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