The Death March refers to a project that has little or no hope of success. It’s already over-budget, over-schedule, and will be dead-on-arrival or cancelled in the near future. But that’s the elephant in the room that management refuses to acknowledge, and so the development team is forced to continue working toward this goal, often being called upon to go to heroic efforts to meet ever more optimistic schedules and deadlines. The sooner everybody acknowledges the reality of the situation, the better it is for everyone in the organization, and especially the development team, who can shift to a less depressing project that might actually solve some problems.
“It’s not a marathon, it’s a death march.” – Anonymous