I’ve recently finished a large, intense project with a client. Now it’s time to evaluate, determine what went great and what could have been better. As I’m reading an Enterpreneur.com article Sometimes, Keeping the Project Moving Requires You to Gently Tell Clients ‘No’ by Bobby Emamian, Co-founder and CEO of Prolific Interactive, a light goes on and I give myself the “you could have had a V8” slap. Yes, I am a victim of “Scope Creep” and challenged when it comes to telling a client no.
According to the article, “scope creep is when small additions (such as new features) are added in a product.” In my situation, the project was initially planned as standard webinar with the usual slides, one speaker and no audience participation. By the end of the project, multiple videos (as many as 8 in one session) and guest speakers had been added. This greatly increased the value for the participant but also greatly increased the work and time necessary by our technical team to pull it all off. The ideal situation would have been to plan these extras in advance so we could not only increase value but also the price of attendance therefore the clients return on investment.
How did scope creep attach it’s self so firmly to my project? Enter the project manager (okay, me) who loathes being a dream crusher and therefore has a difficult time saying no to the client. This is a muscle I had to develop and it still needs some work. My goal is to have a partnership with clients. After all, when they succeed, we succeed. And most clients willingly accept my advice based on my experience. So my take away is to firmly stand my ground and just say no to avoid scope creep.
How do you handle scope creep? I would love to hear your experience.