Managing expectations is the practice of communicating information to prevent gaps between stakeholder perceptions and business realities. It is common for stakeholders to develop a set of assumptions that is out-of-touch with goals, strategies, decisions, projects, technologies, processes and practices that have been officially adopted by an organization. In many cases, such assumptions are undocumented and under-communicated. In other cases, assumptions are documented at an early stage of an initiative but are later invalidated by officially excepted changes.
Inaccurate stakeholder assumptions can result in failures and perceptions of failure. As such, it is common for management to invest a great deal of effort in managing expectations by carefully documenting assumptions, constraints, requirements and decisions. Beyond documentation, adequate face-to-face communication is known to reduce invalid assumptions.
|Definition||Communicating information to prevent inaccurate assumptions.|
|Value||Reduces the risk of business failures or perceived failures. In some cases, an initiative that achieves its documented objectives is widely viewed as a failure due to a gap with expectations.|
|Related Concepts||Project Assumptions|
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