The Reach Blog

The Ah-Ha Moments in Project Management

Feb 6, 2013

From mergers, acquisitions, new products launches, tech projects, process improvements to redecorating the bathroom, we know effective project management is crucial to project success. We rely on strong project leaders to act as guides through the muck. In the process of project management, victories come in all sizes and problems strike from left field. A leader must be prepared for the worst, and hold parties accountable.

Know your role as project manager.

Create the project vision: Define success from the gate. What does it look like for each of your stakeholders? What does it look like overall? Make that vision for success tangible.

 

Protect the health of a project:

  • Get yourself an ally and know the key communicators on a project. You need to work with someone who has skin in the game.
  • Figure out a system to hold parties accountable. In most cases, passing a task along or taking ownership is not the resolution to a team member problem. Here at Broadreach PR, only one person is assigned to a task. This eliminates the confusion of who is responsible throughout any collaboration. Good project leaders ask: How do you want me to communicate with you if you are not meeting your deadlines? It will pay off in the end.  And remember: holding people accountable doesn’t have to be a bad thing. In fact, it’s an opportunity for collaboration.
  • Be honest about what you can accomplish and know when your plate is full.
  • Your team members will have different styles of approaching different issues. There are people who will provide input and there are others who will be the decision makers. Know those people. Remember: Everyone’s input is valuable.
  • Prepare with a bold list of “what-ifs.”
  • A dazzling presentation is nothing without a working medium. Check your technology.

 

Manage milestones: Divide the war into battles and calculate your milestones from start to finish. Manage these accomplishments and deadlines. Work smart.

 

Deal with the issues: This is where the what-ifs come in. Here are the pitfalls of project management:

  • Lack of clear vision
  • No support from the top
  • Poor planning
  • Wrong people involved
  • Missing milestones
  • Unrealistic timing, budgets
  • No control over changes
  • No time to work on project

 

Remove roadblocks: Anything disrupting you from performing a task is a roadblock. This could be legislation, a lack of resources, a team member, etc. Think about your road blocks and eliminate them.

 

Get the best resources: Know what you have and think of what you can get. One of the most common mistakes of project management is not considering resources outside of your original scope. Don’t assume that anything is off the table. Ask more questions.

 

Follow up: A good project manager looks back to move forward. Plan a meeting to analyze your successes and failures. Capture the learning after a project.

 

Feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions on project management.

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