Project names are often assigned to a new project to bring it to life and give it an identity. From our experience, when picking a name for a project keep the following in mind:
- Do not use complicated acronyms – people will come up with their own clarification – CDA (Customer Delivery Architecture) – soon became Can’t Deliver Anything.
- Do not have a project name that is too long – “Developing Applications That Enable Customers to Book Training Online” is just not catchy.
- Be careful with using existing brands – a “Sunny Delight” project collapsed with the demise of the brand.
- Humour may backfire – what about project Earwax?
- Avoid oversized project titles – “the Most Wonderful Project” is building you up for failure.
- Do not use phrases such as “for all”, “everything”– it is unlikely that you will achieve the right outcome for all and will set an unrealistic expectation.
- Do not muddle the scope – project “Keeping it Local” aimed to close down 50 regional warehouses – also a very poor acronym!
- Do not opt for a negative annotation – project Hades (the god of the underworld) will struggle to get you buy-in from staff.
- Do not name the project after the CEO – Project Dave became a laughing stock and dented the CEO’s reputation.