Auditing a Closed Project: Questions That Address 47 Processes

I was recently handed a new project. It was like holding a baby, so delicate and filled with countless possibilities. My project management passion flared up and I started geeking out. 

New documents? New budgets? New team members? New information?
OMG Workplans! Yessss I can make gantt charts again! Ouuu productive meetings! 

 My excitement when starting a new project

My excitement when starting a new project

New projects feel like fresh air after heavy rainfall. I get a sense of renewal and excitement at what could grow. 

Before I start, I prepare by looking at similar projects and ask tough questions - essentially auditing a similar project and using it as a benchmark for my current endeavor.

Why?

I want to do as much as I can to prevent potential issues popping up out of nowhere because I didn't ask other experienced PMs about the lessons they learned about a project that is similar to mine. I can prepare in advance and learn from other people's mistakes.

 How I felt on a previous project when I didn't plan for risks and issues

How I felt on a previous project when I didn't plan for risks and issues

Below are some of the questions I've asked other project managers in regards to their closed projects:

  • What were the biggest headaches with the project you supported?
  • If you could do it again, what aspects would you change?
  • How did you deal with team members that stopped communicating?
  • How much did planning help with the project?
  • What last minute surprises occurred that threw you off guard?
  • What were some great outcomes of the project?
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I think it is vital to learn from our mistakes and the mistakes of others so that everyone can grow. For anyone that is interested in asking tough questions and auditing the work of a closed project, I developed a robust handbook with a list of questions that are great to ask any project manager. The questions are powerful questions that address all 47 processes. Get it today!