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Whether you run a small business, manage part of an organization, hire others to do work, or have to manage your own finite work hours. You probably have to make decisions about which projects to perform. You can choose from three possible actions doing the project, not doing anything or choosing a different project. Obviously, one choice is to move forward with the project. Some projects are given such as buying a new computer when the old one bites the dust.
If the decision isn't clear-cut the information you gather about a project can help you make an informed decision about whether it makes sense to proceed. If a project isn't an automatic yes, here are a few questions you can ask to determine whether proceeding makes sense. Does the project provide enough value? In a business environment look at whether the project supports at least one of the businesses key objectives, such as getting new customers, increasing profit, reducing costs or introducing new services.
Ask yourself is the project feasible, you might find out that office space is scarce at the moment and you can't find a suitable space to move to. Another question to ask is are there people available to do the project. Another choice is do not do the project. If it doesn't provide enough value or it isn't feasible for any reason there's no point to moving into planning. Quite often you'll find that you have several projects to choose from.
When you have to choose you compare the projects, look at which project provides the most value, supports your objectives is the most feasible or most suited to the people who are available. Think about how risky the project is too. Choosing doesn't have to be a drawn out affair involving charts, graphs or weighted factors. Many people rely on a combination of experience, intuition, pragmatic assumptions, rough estimates and quick comparisons to arrive at their decisions.
You might ask others for input, but eventually it comes down to making a choice. If you need help deciding what to do right down the options you have including each project you're considering as well as the option of doing nothing. Then write down factors you'll use to decide such as people available, enough time and potential cost. Add a check mark if the project passes the test in that category, then evaluate the results with a pinch of common sense and make your choice.
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