Project Phasing


Proper project phasing is a critical aspect of project scoping. As projects grow in scale and scope, the risk of failure increases. This lesson addresses tips to break large-scale project into phases.

The 6 Month Rule

If you have a more challenging project, scope your project such that you can accomplish your objective in 6 months or less.

After six months, project teams tend to lose their enthusiasm and focus. Project teams need ongoing wins and milestones to maintain our dedication. With a six-month project, it gives us an opportunity to reward and recognize the team on a more regular basis, and helps avoid schedule creep.

With long timelines, teams can become complacent. Sometimes feel like we have a lot of time and lose the sense of urgency. Or we may feel overwhelmed by undertaking such a daunting project. Additionally, new tasks can creep in and take over valuable project time. With shorter timelines, we’re better at focusing.

Does that mean you can't have a project longer than 6 months? Absolutely not! It means that you are likely going to have multiple phases.

Project Phasing

Here are examples of how you can break this into manageable pieces or phases.


* Phase 1: develop a proposal with recommendations to improve the process and gain sponsor approval
* Phase 2: implement the approved recommendation

* Phase 1: conduct a pilot project
* Phase 2: improve the process for location A
* Phase 3: improve the process for location B

* Phase 1: improve the process by 10%
* Phase 2: improve the process by an additional 5%

If you can find a way to break your project into smaller pieces, you'll find greater success!

Determine the best way to break your project into phases. Discuss with your project team and sponsor.

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