ONE of the biggest deterrents to investment in the various Namibian sectors is the inability of projects to deliver on investment promises.
This is often a result of a poorly defined project scope, a poorly understood resource and the inability to deliver on project costs and schedules.
To attract investment, it has become a necessity for organisations to complete projects under budget and well-ahead of schedule. Unfortunately, with the overwhelming need to secure funding, many organisations make promises or assurances that they simply cannot deliver on.
Shareholder expectations guide the output of any business, moving budget and schedule predictions to create a buffer. This just doesn’t whet the lips of any investor in the current market.
All too frequently, poor expectations are used to set project deadlines. These expectations are fuelled by inexperience and the drive to under-promise and over-deliver typically yields the opposite for both. This, in turn, lowers confidence levels and decreases the propensity for future investment.
So why create an expectation? Project managers and firms commit to secure the work. The market is tough and the pipelines are dry, but as we’ve seen, empty promises are far more difficult to recover from in the long-term.
Aggressive deadlines can drive teams and individuals to achieve more and innovate under pressure, but unrealistic expectations result in reputational damage, compromised quality and safety standards, and missed deadlines.
Accurate studies in conceptual, prefeasibility and definitive feasibility are the first checkpoint for successful projects. While there is always a degree of uncertainty, experience and the right technical partner can build a strong foundation for future success. Knowing which risks are navigable, and which aren’t, determines the real feasibility of a project, and having the aptitude to listen, can mean the difference between profit and loss. While exploring and elaborating on the idea of the project, excitement grows, as do expectations, and the ability of the project leader to answer with an informed ‘no’ is arguably the most important skill within the team.
While technological advancements aid in determining and mitigating risk, there’s a lot to be said for hands-on experience. The theory of navigating climates, leadership, equipment, systems and socio-economic factors is very different to practical application, and there is no algorithm to guide these decisions.
That being said, a knowledgeable partner will know how to mix the old with new systems. Innovative systems, while running concurrently with sound advice, can see studies through to a successful project completion.
Having realistic expectations from the start, and listening to honest feedback and advice, are key to successful collaboration. This provides a strong foundation on which the project will be built. Agreeing on the end result allows the project and client teams to build a realistic budget, as well as timeline goals, while driving collaboration from the onset.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015