Almost all industries require managers for various types of projects. These project management professionals coordinate teams, large or small or somewhere in between, to produce deliverables for their particular company. Not only are they responsible for delivering a certain outcome, but they also need to troubleshoot along the way to manage any obstacles that might pop up throughout the process.
A project manager’s role typically necessitates planning, staff management, strategic and innovative thinking, and quality control. To succeed in this role, individuals need to be highly organized and process-driven professionals who enjoy a challenge and are great communicators. The best in the profession know there are a few tips to keep in mind to excel at the job. To find out what these are, keep reading!
Keep Communication Channels Open and Be an Active Listener
Professionals with business management training know that managing a project is primarily about managing the people responsible for doing individual tasks for the project. To do this well, you need to both listen to the members of your team as well as be clear and concise about your expectations as the project manager.
Each individual works and communicates a bit differently and has different motivations and concerns. Learning this about each member of your team through active listening will help you ascertain how to set up a solid communication strategy.
Communication channels should always be kept open and as direct as possible, preferably face to face. Your team should not be afraid to come to you with a concern and they should also be comfortable with giving you feedback in case they feel that something about the communication system can be improved.
Leverage the Skills of Your Team to Achieve Optimal Results
A good communication strategy will assist you with ascertaining the skills and talents of the individual members of your team, which will prove to be one of your greatest assets. Knowing this can help you distribute tasks in such a way that is motivating and challenging for each team member. This will benefit the project because your team will be keen to work on things that will help them grow and develop as professionals themselves.
Being aware of the expertise in your team will also allow you to effectively delegate. Not only will this endow individual team members with a greater sense of ownership of the project, but it will also provide you with space to focus on strategic aspects.
Never Start a Project Without a Plan, and Don’t Forget to Monitor It
Graduates of business administration training know that without a great plan, a project isn’t likely to succeed. That’s why a detailed plan is necessary, as it acts as a solid starting point as well as a guidance tool.
A well-thought-out plan involves a detailed account of all the steps and tasks that need to be completed, in addition to their expected deadlines. Trackable criteria should also be in place in order to measure progress.
Carrying out regular checkups—and planning them—is very important because it allows you to identify potential problems as they arise so you can address them quickly before they balloon into major crises. Checkups also allow you to know if adjustments to the master plan are needed because various factors can change the trajectory of even the best-planned projects.
Use Project Management to Plan in Advance for Risk
Good project managers are aware that any project faces a number of risks and that their plans may need to be changed to compensate for these. That is why you should engage in pre-emptive problem solving before and during the project so that you can identify what risks may possibly arise. Consulting with the members of your team is helpful here because each person may pinpoint risks specific to their areas of expertise.
Based on the identified risks, it can be a good idea to implement risk-management scenarios into your master plan. This prevents you from being caught off guard in case a sudden change is necessary. Of course, there are those risks that no one may identify beforehand, so the best project managers are always ready to improvise.
Are you looking to become a star project manager?
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