Project management may seem like a simple work process, but one must be wary of such ideas as project management is a complex process that may optimize or delay your entire project. That being said, if you separate the process into smaller pieces, you might find it a lot easier to finish.
Being a project manager is all about perspective; it is your job to see the big picture of your project, which allows your teammates to focus on more specific tasks.
This problem is obvious when you examine school projects, as they only have a single student working on them. That leads to the student getting overwhelmed by the entire concept of the project while it could have been finished if the student approached it piece by piece. These kinds of situations dissipate when one enters the workforce as they primarily start working in teams, but then it becomes important for the project manager to keep everyone apprised of the work process.
To ensure that each and every step of your project succeeds, here are some effective tips on managing it.
Create concrete milestones
One of the biggest mistakes a project manager can make is creating just one big milestone that marks the end of the project. Instead, a project manager must create multiple smaller milestones for their team as reaching multiple goals is a strong motivational influence. That way your team has reachable stages that they can work on piece by piece.
Creating proper milestones prevents burnout and demotivation as you segment a large goal into more manageable pieces. And if the project is intended for a more extended period, would it not be better to have multiple signs of progress instead of one big project that sits in the incomplete section for months.
A project manager may also be involved with various teams, so creating separate milestones for the same project can help with the organization and general project efficiency.
As the project manager, it is up to you to compile all the resources your team might need for the project. While some laissez-faire teams might prefer to find and use their own resources, generally speaking, it’s always better to have all the information and resources stored in one place.
That way, you can save time and increase your team’s efficiency as they can rely on you instead of wasting time scouring the internet for possible resources they can use. This also includes other resources such as your human potential, funds, and equipment. After all, if your team lacks certain skills for the project, it might be a good idea not to rely too much on those skills. It’s important to note that this doesn’t just apply to resources you can utilize for your project but also to the project itself.
Make sure that everything on the project is compiled, stored, and secured before moving onwards, as that may be your lifeline in case of a logistical catastrophe.
Ensure open communication
A team that does not communicate is a team that does not function. It’s that simple. And that’s where a project manager must step in to ensure all teammates can safely and easily communicate with each other about the project.
This can apply to almost any situation, from uncooperative teammates to simply shy people who can’t properly communicate in big groups. In these situations, it’s up to you to do moderate discussions and engage people with active questions (Active questions are a type of questions that encourage more profound answers from people, as opposed to passive yes, no, and concise answers).
It’s also highly encouraged that you create a project routine such as weekly meetings where your team can check on the project’s progress. This ensures that the project progresses smoothly instead of having last-minute marathons caused by procrastination.
Open communication also provides you as the project manager with powerful insight into your teams’ needs.
This is very important as it allows you to allocate resources to teammates who are running behind schedule and can’t keep up with their activities in the Excel calendar, or are experiencing some issues.
The best way to manage a project is to partition each teammate’s workload. And as the project manager, you must know and understand your teams’ skills so that you can adequately delegate work.
Every individual has their skillset that the project manager must use to total efficiency and to do this, you must recognize what tasks they excel at. That way, you can organize the workload so that everyone has their preferred job that they can do at an optimal pace while avoiding the trappings of forced tasks that impact efficiency and motivation.
Keep track of your project
In the end, the most important tip of them all, which combines the aspects of all previously mentioned tips, is to keep track of your project. A project manager must at all times have a rough idea of how everyone’s progressing with their tasks and keep them appraised of any possible mistakes or alterations they might need to work on. Make sure to utilize organizational tools to properly visualize the stages of your project and provide access to your team to better understand the entire project.
Managing a project may seem like hard work, but if you utilize these tips, you’ll be able to streamline the entire process into an enjoyable work experience.