A while back, our friend Andy Dale at OfficeTalk wrote an interesting post in the Bamboo Nation Forums entitled SharePoint Projects Can Fail. It wasn't the first time I had heard these words of caution, and it wouldn't be the last. Just a few weeks ago, Paul Culmsee at Seven Sigma wrote a voluminous five part blog post entitled, Why Do SharePoint Projects Fail? Paul is a very entertaining writer and I recommend that series in particular. I've also heard this phrase repeatedly at tradeshows and conferences... typically as a scare tactic warm up for a talk on deployment planning or governance.
Ok, I'll buy it. I've seen lots of other unsuccessful IT initiatives. I've seen wholesale organizational rejection of a bad document management platform. I once saw a CFO skewered on stage at a global company all hands in response to the rollout of a poorly executed SAP-based expense management system.
But I'd really like to know what it looks like when a SharePoint project fails. In the spirit of the season, Halloween that is, I thought I would put out a call for SharePoint horror stories. You may wax poetic if you must and enumerate the important lessons learned... but what I really want to hear about are the gory details. What failed? Did people simply not use the new system, or was there actual chaos in the cubes as people struggled with a flawed system. Did operations come to a grinding halt? Were customers or critical data forever lost? Who got fired? And most importantly, how much budget was squandered on the ill-fated project?
So please, take a moment and share your SharePoint horror story. The author of the scariest tale will receive a free Bamboo Nation t-shirt, and a pile of leftover Halloween candy. Comments must be posted before close of business on Election Day. C'mon, scare me, I dare you!
Oct 30 2008, 06:50 PM
My name is Steve Gaitten, I am Director of Online Operations at Bamboo. My primary mission is to make Bamboo Nation the most useful SharePoint community site on the web. I am also focused on ensuring a world class shopping experience for customers who visit the Bamboo Solutions Online Store. Prior to Bamboo, I spent over a decade at America Online. At AOL my most recent roles included Director of Product Management in the Messaging & Social Media division as well as Managing Editor of AOL Money & Finance. I am a patented inventor, a bad golfer, an enthusiastic horticulturalist and a dog lover.