Our world is rapidly evolving – continually bursting with new innovative solutions to improve our way of living. As new tools emerge, project teams ride the learning curves before heading towards the beginning of a new project. They diligently embrace these advancements and improve their techniques because they understand that the investment of time in training today will result in greater strengths tomorrow. This is only one of the best practices for successful project management – continue reading for more.
Project Managers should embrace technological upgrades and equip their team with proper project management tools, build concrete plans, determine success criteria and follow detailed timelines. It’s also a common practice to utilize a variety of these tools to track your team’s resources, performance, and progress.
Before working on your next project, a kick-off meeting with every stakeholder is recommended. Knowing how everyone views the project at the very start provides a venue to resolve any possible misconceptions. It also reduces the chance of developing misunderstandings further down the road. Lastly, it gets everyone on the same page.
This is also an excellent time to create a communication style for your team. After all, communication doesn’t end when your kick-off meeting does. This sounds like it’s one of the most basic practices of project management. However, it’s actually one of the most crucial. We relay different messages by choosing our words, manipulating the tone of our voice, and moving our bodies in specific ways, and establish how these are being used to pave the way towards effective collaboration and teamwork. For instance, you can agree on which communication tools to use, how to accomplish tasks and the frequency of submission for progress reports.
Additionally, communication must pair with a certain level of transparency. While it’s given that the amount of information made accessible to the team depends on your project’s confidentiality, it is worth your time to periodically explain where their roles and responsibilities fit in the bigger picture. The difference between a team that operates for the sake of it and one that drives and motivates to support your client is night and day. Empower your team, and you’ll find that their perspectives can shift. Their morale will increase, consequently giving their seemingly repetitive tasks new life and boosting their overall performance.
As the team’s leader, you should know the strengths and weaknesses of your team when individuals work alone or as a group. This information can help you decide how to delegate tasks appropriately to maximize your team’s performance. Moreover, having a general idea of their pacing allows you to set realistic deadlines. Though sometimes, there may be unexpected incidents that slow down your progress and after dealing with them, the team notices that the deadline is closer than expected. With good intentions and an effort to successfully meet it, they might attempt to multitask.
Multitasking happens when we continuously go back and forth from one task to another to accomplish multiple tasks in less time. It sounds nice – but it’s not. Its concept is appealing but implementing it is counterproductive. When shifting from the first to the second task, we recall the latter’s expected deliverables before we work on it. This goes vice versa as well. Pair this frequent delay with having to adjust your focus constantly and not only will you have wasted time. However, you’ll also end up with an exhausted brain before you’ve even begun on the bulk of the work. Stop your team from multitasking and as an alternative, explicitly rank and state the order of tasks according to priority.
As you prioritize tasks, you’re reducing a number of the team’s stressors, decreasing their risk of burning out. Plus, by doing so, new tasks can insert in a particular spot in your hierarchy of priorities. Having this order allows you to focus on the task at hand because you know that it’s currently the most significant to further the project’s progress. It constructs a clear path towards the common end goal: satisfying your client.
The project technically ends after clients have received all your deliverables and declared closed. Nevertheless, it’s important to note that learning doesn’t stop at any point in the project. In reality, it doesn’t stop at all. Similar to how you started with a kick-off meeting, end it with a project wrap-up meeting. Consider this an opportunity for growth. Set aside some time for the team to evaluate the project, review its highlights, and identify areas for improvement. Ask feedback from your team how you can help them in future situations and take necessary measures to improve.