We worked Saturday with a great company (and management team), collaborating on better defining their strategy initiatives.

One topic was how they finish projects for customers. While this step could be treated as an afterthought, it's actually a critical stage on multiple dimensions. If it's done thoroughly and promptly, it leads to greater success and satisfaction for clients and stronger profitability for the company. Done poorly (i.e., dragging on too long), it can trigger client dissatisfaction on an otherwise successful project and deteriorate profitability as project managers rack up uncompensated hours and can't move to other projects.

Thinking about it later, finalizing a project is an important phase to have end really well for any project-based business, whether you're serving external or internal clients.

From working with our client and thinking about this strategic, final step, here are questions we're considering for Brainzooming™ that apply broadly:

  • Near project's end, are we revisiting the deliverables and to-do lists, updating and aggressively managing open issues?
  • Are there clear cues signaling we're done with the project?
  • Does the client fully understand its role in working with the output and implementing it successfully after the project is handed over?
  • What specific questions are we asking to gauge how well we delivered? Are we addressing any points of concern promptly and satisfactorily?
  • Are we asking for referrals?

These are just some questions any project-based professional needs to be answering. What items would you add to the list from your experience? - Mike Brown