The life of a project manager can be fulfilling and exciting. But it can also be extremely stressful if there are too many mistakes or if things don’t go right.
Thankfully, with the right guidance, you can plan a smooth route from start to finish, mitigating any problems before they occur. This does not mean that it will surely be simple: life never is! However, if you are organizing for good and you learn to delegate and to make good decisions, then we will find ourselves on the road to success.
The following four steps in the management of projects critical to obtaining good results.
Start on the right foot
Start your project with a clear vision and set a series of goals that will help you complete your project successfully and on time. A good start will instill enthusiasm in your team, as well as build trust and initiative. A poor start could instead lead to distrust, skepticism and poor involvement. To kick-start your project with vigor, you need to ask yourself the right questions: draw up the “project charter “, A document that encapsulates vision and objectives and that involves all the interested parties necessary to carry out the project.
Delegate and make decisions
Being able to make a decision, often quickly, is a key skill of the project manager. Another crucial skill is the ability to delegate to individuals or teams in order to keep the project going at a good pace. For this to happen, it is necessary to define clearly every activity, which must be completed within a specified interval of time.
The clarity is essential. Clear instructions move quickly, while confusion is destabilizing and can cost you dearly. From the outset, it is necessary to build an “activity map” that details each element of the project, together with who will be responsible for what. It is also recommended that you allow flexibility for change requests. Decide on your approach right away and make sure everyone involved takes appropriate action.
Structuring planning projects
Always with attention to agility, projects must be divided into phases or milestones. We also need to define how we intend to reach these goals and measure the results. It is important to identify the necessary steps and make sure they are realistic and achievable. You should also plan the timing of each step, allowing your team to get the job done, get it right but without leaving room for too much procrastination and delay. There are several tools available that allow you to plan with agility, including Timeboxing and the Gantt chart.
Manage the steering committee
As a project manager, you will be held accountable for the entire life cycle of a project. This means that there is a need to update the Steering Committee on the progress made and to obtain support at crucial moments. For example, you may run into obstacles that you need help with, or you may need extra resources (including a budget increase!). The meeting guidance must be managed with skill and persuasiveness, in order to make the committee an ally.
It takes a diverse set of skills to be a truly effective project manager. In addition to what we have mentioned, it is necessary to show leadership, communication skills and attention to feedback.
All of these skills can be developed over time, but it takes practice, persistence, and commitment.