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How to Overcome Team Conflicts and Delays in I.T. Projects

Tanya Tan // Last Updated: 12 March 2024

What’s the key to getting a big job done right? Great people working well together. What is one of the biggest issues a project can face? Interpersonal communications breaking down from ideal efficiency and not getting corrected. How do we prevent this from occurring and resolve it when it does?

In the realm of IT project management, the journey from conception to completion is seldom a straight path. It's a multifaceted endeavor that encompasses planning, vigilant progress tracking, and the strategic direction of project resources to ensure timely delivery, budget adherence, and quality compliance.

Project management transcends the simplistic view of individual tasks or objectives, embracing a complex process that involves a collective effort. Addressing the challenges that arise necessitates a comprehensive, multi-angled approach, recognizing that effective solutions are derived from a holistic understanding of the project ecosystem.

Common Roadblocks in Project Management

Projects often encounter obstacles such as unrealistic objectives, shifting requirements, team discord, schedule slippage, and financial collection difficulties. This discussion zeroes in on two prevalent issues: navigating team conflicts and mitigating project delays.


Navigating Team Conflicts

At the heart of every project is its people. The project ensemble—comprising the internal team and the client—brings a diverse array of personalities, work styles, and expectations. This diversity, while a catalyst for innovative solutions, can also be a breeding ground for conflict.

Strategies for Harmonizing Team Dynamics:

  • Early Detection and Resolution:

   The project manager (PM) plays a pivotal role in foreseeing potential conflicts and intervening early. Recognizing the signs of brewing discontent or misalignment among team members or between the team and clients is crucial. Proactivity not only prevents escalation but also fosters a culture of trust and openness. Regular communication and updates to clients about progress can preempt concerns, reinforcing the PM's role as a reliable mediator.

  • Empathetic Listening and Clarification:

   Effective conflict resolution starts with understanding. By actively listening to all parties involved and validating their perspectives, a PM can clarify the core issues at hand. It's essential to articulate feedback and instructions clearly, leveraging specific, objective language to minimize ambiguities. This approach ensures that each team member has a clear understanding of their responsibilities and the project's expectations, paving the way for a more cohesive work environment.

  • Adapting Conflict Resolution Tactics:

   Conflict within a project can be approached through various strategies, such as assertiveness, avoidance, accommodation, compromise, and collaboration. The choice of strategy should be contextually based on the nature of the conflict and the overarching project goals. For instance, in situations where immediate resolution is paramount, adopting a more assertive stance may be necessary. Conversely, some conflicts may benefit from a collaborative approach, fostering a sense of partnership and shared ownership of outcomes.


Tackling Project Delays

Despite meticulous planning, project schedules can often veer off course. Delays can stem from a multitude of factors, including unforeseen challenges, resource constraints, and scope creep.


Solutions for Keeping Projects on Track:

  • Task Segmentation and Delegation:

   Breaking down larger tasks into more manageable segments can enhance the agility of the project team. This approach not only facilitates easier assignment and tracking of tasks but also allows for quicker pivots in response to unexpected challenges. When faced with delays, re-evaluating task assignments and redistributing workloads can help maintain momentum.

  • Resource Management and Oversight:

   A thorough understanding of project resources, including team member workloads and skillsets, is essential for effective project management. Regularly assessing the progress of tasks against the project timeline allows the PM to identify potential bottlenecks early. This proactive oversight enables timely interventions, such as reallocating resources or adjusting deadlines, to keep the project on track.

  • Fostering Transparency and Communication:

   Keeping all stakeholders informed about project progress and challenges promotes a culture of transparency. Sharing relevant information not only aids in setting realistic expectations but also encourages collaboration and problem-solving among team members. Effective use of project management tools and platforms can streamline communication, making it easier to monitor progress and address issues promptly.

  • Leveraging Technology for Project Monitoring:

   Tools such as Trello offer a visual and interactive way to track project milestones, tasks, and responsibilities. These platforms facilitate real-time updates and collaboration, enabling the PM and team members to stay aligned on project objectives and deadlines. Customizing these tools to reflect the specific needs and workflows of the project can significantly enhance efficiency and accountability.


Using Tools to help the Process

According to the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC), the PM needs to subdivide the entire project into corresponding sections and arrange for team members to complete all sub-tasks.



At SEIRIM we use Trello, a flexible and easy-to-use project management and collaboration tool that can meet a variety of project needs such as project management, agile development, personal task planning, scheduling, etc. It is simple and easy to use.

By using Trello, SEIRIM's project manager's promptly update tasks and sub-tasks, and team members' also update their own tasks. These actions keep the views in the tool reflecting project progress accurately and easily.



Users can freely customize indicators suitable for their team in Custom Fields, such as priority, status, assignee, percentage, etc., and can also set automation. Feedback from team members can also be written in comments.

Trello Boards facilitate team members to share information in a timely manner and understand each other's project progress, greatly reducing communication costs and improving work efficiency.



Mastering IT project management requires a blend of strategic foresight, effective communication, and adaptive leadership. Addressing the twin challenges of team conflicts and project delays not only demands technical acumen but also a deep understanding of human dynamics and organizational culture.

By embracing a proactive, empathetic, and collaborative approach, project managers can navigate the complexities of IT projects, driving them to successful completion while fostering a positive and productive work environment. In doing so, they lay the groundwork for sustained success and continuous improvement in the ever-evolving landscape of IT project management.



Tanya is a top project manager at SEIRIM and is enthusiastic about exploring ways to deliver our projects better and faster for increased client and user satisfaction.


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