During my undergrad marketing class I was a part of a group that was assigned to a local coffee shop in order to put together a presentation that would offer marketing material for the coffee shop. This was a learning lesson, a big one. We were able to pull it off but it was full of scope creep.
After our initial meeting our group assigned a leader and tasks for the rest of us. We identified the needs of the client and set up a time table for future meetings to discuss check points. Unfortunately for us we did not discuss or put together a plan for scope creep.
At our next meeting, only four of our members showed up. No one had heard from her and she had not answered e-mail or turned in her tasks. We were forced to assign her task to someone else which meant the rest of us would have to wait since our tasks relied upon hers. We then received a call from the client saying he would have to reschedule our next meeting and shave some time off of our deadline. He also told us that he wanted to add an element to our marketing plan.
After our initial panic we decided to add more meetings, reassign some tasks and make sure that each person of the team could handle other tasks if we had another team member fall off. The leader then decided it would be a good idea to meet with the client via internet since he was out of town. We also had to rework our timeline in order to meet the new deadline and add the new element into the plan.
If I would have been the leader I would have put together a plan in order to combat the issues we ran into. I would have created a questionnaire for the client and the employees in order to gain insight for my plan. This way if he was not able to be at a meeting most of my questions would have already been answered. I would also put together a plan to utilize different forms of communication that way the group and the client could be updated on the timeline, check points etc. without getting together physically. This would have given us more time to concentrate on our tasks. I would have put together a risk management plan in order to be able to deal with the scope creep that presented itself.
All of the scope creep that occurred made this assignment very difficult and it seemed like we were cramming information in at such a fast rate that we often seemed lost. All though we meet our deadline and we were able to provide the marketing material requested, dealing with possible issues ahead of time would have made our job a lot easier.