Project management accounts for over fifty percent of an organization’s success. With advancements in technology and increased access to information, project management has become easy and less demanding, allowing more people to practice as project managers.

Yet, there are reasons why more people leave the profession faster than they get in. These reasons are dreaded challenges inherent in managing a project through its various complex stages, from conception to completion.

This article provides insight into the challenges project managers face in project management and how to tackle them effectively. 

The following are the ten most dreaded challenges of project management:

  1. Continuously evolving project scope.
  2. Wide communication Gap.
  3. Sudden price rise (inflationary trends).
  4. Unrealistic deadlines.
  5. Inadequately skilled personnel/team members.
  6. The complexity of contractual obligations.
  7. Inaccurate progress measurements.
  8. Internal organizational disagreements.
  9. Unnecessary influence from contractee.
  10. Ineffective control structures.


  1. Continuously evolving Project scope: like Oliver twist, project owners want more. They are ambitious and want to hit a milestone in their various careers; this is why they began the project in the first place. Therefore with every progress in the project execution process, project owners tend to want to broaden the project’s scope. This usually occurs when the project’s scope is not adequately defined and documented before the commencement of the project. The fault is sometimes from the project manager. In trying to impress the Client, they might decide to make new changes to the entire project, deviating from the initial scope.
  2. Wide communication gap: this is a challenge to the entire project management process because communication is essential at every stage in the project execution. A Communication gap occurs when the team members involved in project execution do not understand the project’s intent, goals, and objective. The existence of a Communication gap in a project means that team members are not performing maximally. It also means the team cannot achieve the goals of the project.
  3. Sudden price rise: prices are influenced by the forces of demand and supply. A sudden price increase is similar to a cost overrun. It is an unexpected rise in estimated cost due to underbudgeting, inflationary trend, escalation of commitment and national policies. Project managers are constantly faced with an increase in the project’s cost; this affects the quality of the output and the satisfaction of both the project manager and job owner.
  4. Unrealistic deadlines: a critical quality of a good project manager is making accurate time forecasts. Too much time and too little time on a project result in poor output and loss of resources. Unrealistic deadlines are timeframes set for project execution that do not align with the cost and scope of the project. An example is setting a 3-month deadline to complete a bridge construction. It is too short and unrealistic. Unrealistic deadlines keep the project manager and the entire project team members stressed, and maximum output is never achieved in stressed conditions. Managers, who are faced with the challenge of unrealistic deadlines, tend to underperform and ultimately turn in disastrously executed projects.
  5. Inadequately skilled personnel/team members: executing a project demands technical know-how. Therefore, team members involved in projects should have a wide range of skill sets. Where team members are deficient in specific essential skills, the project execution suffers. In the absence of Skilled personnel, the project manager has to outsource, or the entire project has to be terminated; both options function to increase the cost of project execution and hamper project completion.

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