Twenty project management proverbs:
- You cannot produce a baby in one month by impregnating nine women.
- The same work under the same conditions will be estimated differently by ten different estimators or by one estimator at ten different times.
- The most valuable and least used word in a project manager’s vocabulary is “NO.”
- You can con a sucker into committing to an unreasonable deadline, but you can’t bully him into meeting it.
- The more ridiculous a deadline, the more it costs to try and meet it.
- The more desperate the situation, the more optimistic the situatee.
- Too few people on a project can’t solve the problems—too many create more problems than they solve.
- You can freeze the user’s specs but he won’t stop expecting.
- Frozen specs and the abominable snowman are alike: They are both myths, and they both melt when sufficient heat is applied.
- The conditions attached to a promise are forgotten, and the promise is remembered.
- What you don’t know hurts you.
- A user will tell you anything you ask about—nothing more.
- Of several possible interpretations of a communication, the least convenient one is the only correct one.
- What is not on paper has not been said.
- No major project is ever installed on time, within budget, with the same staff that started it.
- Projects progress quickly until they become 90 percent complete; then they remain at 90 percent forever.
- If project content is allowed to change freely, the rate of change will exceed the rate of progress.
- No major system is ever completely debugged; attempts to debug a system inevitably introduce new bugs that are even harder to find.
- Project teams detest progress reporting because it vividly demonstrates their lack of progress.
- Parkinson and Murphy are alive and well—in your project.
Source: Project Management: A Systems Approach to Planning, Scheduling and Controlling by Harold R Kerzner (11th Edition).