Project Post Mortem

Easy but Important Tips for Successful Project Post Mortem

By: Naveen

Evaluating the success of a project’s ability to meet business goals is primarily the need of every business. The process through which the evaluation is done is called a project post-mortem or project retrospective.

In a single sentence, it can be said that the project post-mortem is an examination to determine the correct cause of business success or failure. It can enable you to determine how projects brought you good or bad results.

Usually, a post-mortem meeting starts with a restatement of the project’s scope. It is set up to find the answers to “what worked well for the team and what did not work well for the team.

Below are some helpful tips for successful project post-mortem meeting.

Have a Post-Mortem For Every Project

No matter how small or how big the project is, you should have post-mortem for every project. Even success of the smaller project can give ways to succeed larger projects. It’s all about ‘how the team did and why.’ There is always something to learn from the post-marten of every project.

Scheduling The Post-Mortem

Scheduling the post-mortem directly after the project concludes is the way to go. You will have bonus points.

It is important to know that details of project vanish from the mind according to time. It’s a natural fact that when a project goes well, we usually lose the right to problems due to the job we did well. And, if the project fails to succeed, we lose the shine of success. We remain busy with figuring out where mistakes were made.  If you have your post-mortem, you will have in-depth details about the project plans, and strategies whether a project goes well or poorly.

Set a Clear Agenda

No doubt, there are several details to cover in a short time. Your team members can easily veer off track for post-mortem meetings. It is important to set a clear agenda in advance. Follow the tricks:

Start with a recap – Define the core objectives of a project. Determine the goals and metrics. Don’t spend more than five minutes in this portion. It will be a quick refresher on what your team set out do to.

Review the results – Invest another five minutes in reviewing the project’s final results. It will be an upfront estimation of whether or not the project met your team’s metrics for success. Make sure whether you hit the targets.

Why or why not – Find out why the project ended up the way it did. This may take several rounds of meetings.

Provide Project Post Mortem Training

Since Project Post Mortem has become an essential part of a business, it is important to provide proper training to your staff. Several companies have stepped into providing the training that can enable you to constantly improve projects and project teams before, during and after projects.

Some of the key benefits of the Project Post Mortem enable teams and leaders to:

1. Start projects confidently by setting up in a way to succeed.

2. Handle the current situation and easily clarify project status.

3. Apply project best practices

4. Determine key takeaways and areas for improvement.

5. Identify and manage project risks before, during and after projects.

6. Determine, re-calibrate areas of focus, and classify specific next steps.

7. Implement proven solutions

8. Successfully work on your specific project, culture, and situation.


If you are not sure when to do project post-mortems, it is good to provide training to your employees. It will be useful and your managers and teams to understand the details of any project. They can easily find the cause of success or failure of the project.


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