Tenth deadly sins of project planning

In an IEEE Software ‘From the Editor’ column, Steve McConnell writes (at http://www.stevemcconnell.com/ieeesoftware/eic19.htm), that the nine deadly sins of project planning are:

(1) Not planning at all

(2) Failing to account for all project activities

(3) Failure to plan for risk

(4) Using the same plan for every project

(5) Applying pre-packaged plans indiscriminately

(6) Allowing a plan to diverge from project reality

(7) Planning in too much detail too soon

(8) Planning to catch up later

(9) Not learning from past planning sins

I am managing a project right now, and I just can’t figure out which sin I am committing: (2) or (7)? I suppose the answer is that is depends on the project and its circumstances. But of course. It always does.

And uh, so at least now I know that these are all the deadly sins of project planning and other sins are presumably not deadly. They are merely extremely toxic, presumably. My project won’t exactly die if I forget about some other practical issues, it will just go into convulsions or stop breathing for a while, or sway gently from side to side when it should be rocking.

In other words, I still have to worry about the non-fatal issues in some particular order which is highly project dependent, and these so called fatal sins have to watched out for but exactly when a sin is being committed is also dependent on the project.


Why do these wise men write these articles with zero information? I just wasted a perfectly good 5 mins which I could have spent more usefully reading about a API, framework, or some such, that would actually have solved a few real problems.

The tenth deadly sin of project management: trying to get wisdom from anything other than hard facts when you should be doing project management: learning, building consensus, disseminating information, talking to your team, and writing code.

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