Project management is either something that you love or hate. As a business owner, you have several things to handle each day. So, whether you are working to manage your own projects right now or looking to hire someone specifically for project management, every person on your team can benefit from a few tips that can help them operate as a skilled project manager.
What is a Project Manager?
A project manager is an individual that takes the day-to-day management of business client needs off of the back of the business owner. The business owner may actually perform the marketing and take on the clients. Once they do, it is the job of the project manager to hammer out the details of meeting the client needs in a timely fashion using the resources available to the company.
A project manager position requires certain skills that other team members may possess in part or in whole. They include, but are not limited to:
- Effective communicator
- Persuasive speaker
- Effective delegator
- Being a “big picture” person
Cultivating these skills within your company makes everyone instrumental in the growth of the business even if “project manager” is not in their job title.
How Team Members Can be a Skilled Project Manager
Here are some tips for anyone who wants to think like and act like a project manager, including the business owner.
- Have a scope for your project – What do you see as the focus of the project? Nail down a focus with the client before setting up the plan for the project. This helps to avoid “scope creep”.
- Set milestones – Setting smaller goals within the scope of the larger project allows you to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Each team member can focus on accomplishing smaller tasks that add up to a larger completed project.
- Document your project – Using some sort of software program for project management facilitates communication with other team members as well as the client.
- Build in a cushion for each phase of the project – Tight timelines are the enemy. Anything can go wrong, as Murphy’s Law states. Give yourself at least a week extra for each phase of the project. It doesn’t relax the job performance but motivates the team. They are less stressed and frustrated when problems arise.
- Have a contingency plan – For each stage of the project, have team members who can fill in if someone is absent or extra work needs to be added on.
- Hold review meetings – Regular meetings keep everyone up to speed on the project, identifies what is expected next, what changes have occurred and any milestone celebrations.
- Get feedback from your customers – Ask clients for feedback once the project has been completed. Take the information back to the team and use it to review performances.