Consequences of communication failure in Project Execution

Failure to communicate effectively is one of the major causes of failure of a project. A good project manager must learn to effectively communicate with the project team. Having a clear communication plan is important. This will provide a reference for determining the progress of a project for any interested party.



Technology has made it easy across the world to stay connected. This technology can be used by project managers for establishing a successful line of communication. This will ensure that necessary information is readily available and disseminated regularly as needed. Some of this technology are web sites, emails, and conference calls. They all play a part in the creation of a strong project communication plan which is absolutely essential to the successful completion of a project.

An effective communication line has four important elements. The audience, location, frequency, and agenda. A perfect synchronization between all of these elements ensures that the project manager has the necessary time to plan, execute, and control the progress of a project till its end.

However, when there is poor communication during the course of a project, it can have a detrimental effect on the project. The breakdown in communication comes in a number of ways including the use of language, mechanics of communication, personal factors, and workplace factors.

Proper use of language is essential. Error in communication in the sense of mispronunciation, mistranslation, and misunderstanding of words is one of the things that causes the failure of a project.

Also, communication is two-sided. It’s between the initiator and the receiver. The source of the communication must ensure that the information passed is in no way ambiguous so the listening party. It is also the duty of the receiver on the other side to listen and allow the speaker to express his or her mind. When the understanding along the line of communication is wobbly, the project is susceptible to failure.

Another element which is personal factors is equally important. Unfortunately, not bringing our personal issues to work is difficult. Factors such as life at home, personal issues, and traits affect our performance in the workplace, either positively or negatively. It’s simply difficult to keep this two separate.

Last but not the least are the factors at the workplace. As the saying goes, time is money and as a manager, it is essential to realize the importance of investing time into developing effective personal communication skills among the members of the project team. This is important in order to ensure the successful completion of the project.


Every project experiences changes at every step in the process. The response to these changes determines the ultimate outcome of the project. Immediate communication about the change and its impact on time, resources and/or cost will help to keep all stakeholders focused on the eventual outcome. Small changes with seemingly insignificant impact should not be skipped over. There should be no room for uncertainty or doubt at any stage in the project. The key to success in the execution of a project is communication.

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