Friday, 21 January 2011

Red Flag Management

Red flag management is a mindset that encourages major issues & risks to be identified and resolved before they impact the outcome of a project. The objective is to make these issues visible at the earliest opportunity and use that visibility to seek assistance from the wider project team and aim for a proactive resolution.

Communication and awareness is used to resolve
these issues rather than simply managing what is going well, not addressing concerns early and assuming everything will work out fine. 

Potential project red flags
are anything that could affect project milestones, project costs or the quality of the product or service being delivered. These could include resources becoming unavailable, a lack of stakeholder involvement or the rate of progress slowing down.

Fig. 1 Sample Project Map with red flags highlighted
Please click on image for full screen view

During project meetings, question the important milestones and activities
. Ask why the next milestone might not be met or what could affect a project deliverable, any areas of concern should be visually identified. Use a red flag symbol or use branch fill colors to highlight them. The severity of the issue could also be visually identified using shades of red or the size of flag.


Try also to visually represent whether your red flag is a growing, stable or receding concern. The arrows in the picture gallery can be used for this.

Once this mindset becomes an identified trait of the project meeting it becomes natural to think about and identify red flags thus reducing the risk in your projects.

The principles of red flag management can be applied to other areas of your business. Apply it to the management of a sales pipeline, ask is there any reason that a particular sale might not happen? You might find that the IT approval process may not be complete yet, the budget might not have been identified.

Download
the map for a summary of this article and information on other areas where red flag management could be applied.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Boss you are great and though I am not qualifed as you, I am sure we can corporate to certain extent. Nice to know about you sir.
Zahra J.Saleh
Quality Officer, based in Sharjah -UAE

Kelly Robertson said...

Thanks for your comment, glad the post was useful.

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